Sunday, July 21, 2013

Howdy Kameron!

Before today's game with the Chicago White Sox, the Atlanta Braves announced they had purchased the contract of Kameron Loe and Tyler Pastornicky is headed back to Gwinnett to be...ya know...Pastornickyish.  So, it's time to welcome Mr. Loe to the team and introduce ourselves to this new Brave.

Loe has been in the system since May 11th, a day after being released by the Chicago Cubs.  The Cubs were already his second team of the year as Loe began the season with the Seattle Mariners.  Usually, it is a bad sign when we are just passed the All-Star Break and you are wearing your third different major league uniform of the season.

After being selected with a 20th rounder in 2002, Loe joined the Texas Rangers system.  The Cal-State pitcher was a quick riser through the Rangers system, making his debut with Texas on September 26th, 2004.  He was a fixture for some bad Rangers staffs, appearing in 105 games over the next four seasons, including 47 starts.  One highlight for him came on May 12th, 2006, when he was credited with a shutout, the only complete game of his career.  However, it should be noted that it was a five-inning, weather-shorten shutout.  Still counts, right?

Texas, done with the right-hander, released him after the 2008 season and Loe tried his luck in Japan, starting five games with Softbank.  The results were not pretty.  Not sure if he was hurt or his suckage forced them to kick him to the curb.

Coming back state-side, Loe signed with the Brewers before the 2010 season and was a pleasant surprise for them.  Relying on a breaking ball he threw nearly 20% of the time, Loe posted a 3.71 FIP in 53 games out of the bullpen.  He kept the ball on the ground for the most part with a 59.4 GB%, but did suffer from the homer ball, likely a product of the occasional hanging curve/slider.  Still, he had good control and with his groundball tendencies, the Brewers brought back Loe in his first year of arbitration in 2011.  He was ridiculously good for the Brewers that season, upping his GB% to 63.3% and lowering his FIP to 2.80 while avoiding the big flies that got him in trouble the previous year.

Loe was counted on to be an integral piece of the Brewers pen in 2012, but his numbers took a tumble.  Again, balls were leaving the yard with unacceptable frequency (1.2 HR/9) and his WHIP exploded to 1.43.  The Brewers, who pitched Loe seventy times in 2012 and a mind-boggling 195 times in three seasons, non-tendered Loe after 2012 rather than go a third year in arbitration.

That brings us to 2013.  Loe hooked on with the Mariners for a shade over a million dollars, but after four games, Seattle waived Loe and the Cubs claimed him in mid-April.  He lasted a few more weeks with the Cubs, but Chicago released him in early May after seven appearances.  Since May 11th, Loe has pitched for Gwinnett, posting a respectful 1.13 WHIP and 3.39 FIP in 21 games, four starts.

With Loe, the Braves have a guy who pitches almost exclusively off his sinker as about three of every four pitches will be a sinking fastball.  He compliments that with a breaking ball that some call a curve, some call a slider, others call a slurve.  Either way, he drops about 10 mph off his 89 mph sinker and when he doesn't locate the breaking pitch, balls tend to leave the yard far too often.  Loe is the kind of guy you take a chance on and hope he is able to spot his pitches at an unsustainable rate and get lucky the hangers don't get pulverized.

Don't expect him to stick around for long, though.

No comments:

Post a Comment