The feel-good story of the 2012 baseball season appears to be over, and for all the new ground Jamie Moyer broke in his quest fighting Father Time, ironically what may be the end of the road set yet another milestone, On Wednesday, Moyer became the oldest player to be designated for assignment.
We here at Dubsism have been following Jamie Moyer since before his nearly-miraculous recovery from Tommy John surgery at age 49; we’ve been trumpeting the Moyer story for two years now, when Moyer was still an effective fifth starter for the Philadelphia Phillies. Check out this graphic from 2010 when there was a point in time when a legitimate case could be made that Moyer was as valuable pitcher as two-time defending Cy Young winner Tim Lincecum.
Even today, the day Moyer was designated for assignment, Moyer’s ERA is 5.70; Lincecum’ s is 6.41.
Over the last few months we’ve watched the “johnny-come-latelies” descend on this story, and why shouldn’t they? It was a fun, if not inspirational story; as a guy closer to 45 than 35, I was pulling for Moyer. It wasn’t just because he’s six years my senior and still pitching in the major leagues. It wasn’t just because Moyer seemed to set a record every time he took the mound. He was the oldest player to record a win. He was the oldest player to drive in a run. He was the oldest player to score a run. Moyer just seemed like a guy who kept going out there because he loves the game.
The trouble is that Moyer had a 5.70 ERA in 10 starts with the Rockies, and he allowed a league-high 75 hits in 53 innings. He also gave up 11 home runs, which would be a lot even by Coors Field standards, but five of them came in his last two starts on the road in Miami and Cincinnati.
It’s not like we didn’t see this coming; our Jamie Moyer Update most previous to this one bore that out. Moyer’s ERA and WHIP were both trending in the wrong direction, and with the Rockies looking to build for the future and looking to get their young pitchers some innings, it was clear Moyer was the odd man out. To replace Moyer in the rotation, the Rockies called up Carlos Torres, a 29-year-old right-hander who had a 2.45 ERA and 32/12 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 33 innings at Colorado Springs.
Rather than bemoaning the probable end, let’s look at what Moyer has accomplished.
Check out how many Hall-of-Famers are listed on that chart. Check out how many Hall-of-Famers Moyer outpaces. Check out this sample of ex-big leaguers with whom Moyer shares his birth year (1962): Oddibe McDowell, Danny Tartabull, Wally Joyner, Kevin Seitzer, Darren Daulton, and Darryl Strawberry. Moyer is 12 days older than Bo Jackson.
OK, enough of pointing out the age thing. The real truth is Moyer was only designated for assignment; he wasn’t executed. Jamie Moyer will land somewhere in baseball again. If the role he snags with another team happens to be on the field, then Your Jamie Moyer Update will continue as you have come to know it. I hope that is the case, if for no other reason the man has been a great source of content for us here at Dubsism. After all, we’ve made a lot of blog hay off Jamie Moyer.
If not, it isn’t hard to picture Moyer as a pitching coach. Now, we just wait to see what the next chapter in the Moyer saga brings.