Fantasy Baseball: Will Ubaldo Jimenez Dominate for the Cleveland Indians?

Ryan Lester@LestersLegendsSenior Writer IAugust 1, 2011

SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 30: Ubaldo Jimenez #38 of the Colorado Rockies pitches during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park on July 30, 2011 in San Diego, California. In a recent announcement Jimenez has been traded to the Cleveland Indians.  (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
Denis Poroy/Getty Images

The Cleveland Indians made a big splash prior to the trade deadline to acquire Colorado Rockies ace Ubaldo Jimenez. Or should I say last year’s Rockies ace?

Ubaldo is 6-9 on the year with a 4.46 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP, a far cry from the 19-8, 2.88, 1.15 mark that he set last year. Heck, those numbers aren’t even what Jorge de la Rosa did for the Rockies last year (8-7, 4.22, 1.32). Plus, he’s not even coming over on a strong note.

After a 3-2, 2.45, 1.14 June, it looked like Jimenez was turning things around. While he hasn’t been as bad as he had been in the first two months of the season, it’s hard to get excited about a 3-2, 4.78, 1.44 month.

Especially when he tailed off big time last year.

In his first 18 starts, Ubaldo was 15-1 with a 2.20 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. In his last 15, he was 4-7 with a 3.80 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP.

One benefit will clearly be Jimenez’s escape from Coors Field. He was 3-5 at home with a 5.93 ERA and 3-4 with a 3.65 ERA on the road. Even in his impressive 2010 campaign he was dramatically better on the road (10-6, 2.63 ERA, 1.08 WHIP) than at home (9-2, 3.19, 1.24).

By landing in the AL Central, he avoids the big bats that he would have faced if he went to the Bronx. He was 1-0 with a 3.75 in two earlier starts against the White Sox and Tigers. Last year, he held the Twins to one run over eight innings.

Cleveland isn’t getting the pitcher that tore up the league last year. There just isn’t as much bite on his fastball. That doesn’t mean that the trade wasn’t good for the Tribe or for his fantasy owners, though.

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