Bartolo Colon is a celebrated starting pitcher, who helped Oakland Athletics make another playoff appearance, despite the fact that the team didn’t change much in the last couple of years. Billy Beane is still trying to make the most of his unimpressive roster and those who watched the movie “Moneyball” will find that very little has changed.
Young pitchers, equally inexperienced relievers and plenty of promising yet untested hitters are the team that the A’s are counting on every season. Somehow, the general manager found a way to motivate them and keep them playing their a-game, despite offering below average salaries. 2013 can be regarded as a successful year for Oakland, even though they failed to advance to the ALCS at the expense of Detroit Tigers. Such a performance would’ve been tremendous, given the fact that the central division winners invested hundreds of millions in acquiring new players or extending the contract of existing ones.
One of the few bright spots in their own rotation is Bartolo Colon, a starting pitcher with loads of experience but also one that spent some time in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. Following his performance enhancement drugs scandal, he spent the entire season on the bench, yet returned in 2013 and exceeded expectations. Beane told the media that he was pleasantly surprised with his starting pitcher’s performance this season and that he intends to keep him in his rotation.
The veteran has started for 30 times and kept his earned run average at a remarkable 2.65, making a major contribution to his team success in the regular season. Hadn’t it been for Bartolo Colon, Oakland would’ve probably missed the playoffs so it makes perfect sense to re-sign him now when he becomes a free agent. The only problem about him is that he has recently set another milestone as he turned 40 this year, an age at which most starting pitchers retire.
Oakland paid him $2 million in 2012 and increased that amount to $3 million in 2013, but it is hard to believe that the starting pitcher will accept the same salary. On one hand, he was stellar this season and both his team and other clubs in Major League Baseball realize that, so he can afford to ask for a little extra. On the other, not many are willing to spend $4 million or more on a 40 years old starting pitcher knowing that he’s prone to injuries and could spend most of the time on the bench.
http://www.sbnation.com/mlb/2013/10/30/5046368/bartolo-colon-athletics-mlb-free-agent-rumors makes a convincing case and the article suggests that Oakland general manager is going to re-sign Bartolo. On the off chance that the A’s will decide that his financial requests are unaffordable, the team will have to rely on its younger starting pitchers. Luckily for them, there is no shortage of talent in Oakland and names such as AJ Griffith, Dan Straley, Tommy Milone and Jarrod Parker sound promising enough, not to mention that Sonny Gray would also return in 2014.