Sep
28

Kuroda still undecided about 2014, hasn’t ruled out retirement

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Via Anthony Rieber: Hiroki Kuroda is still unsure if he wants to pitch in 2014, either in Japan or with an MLB team. He hasn’t ruled out retirement. “It all depends on how I feel after the season and think about things. Right now all I can say is I don’t know,” said the right-hander.

Assuming he doesn’t start tomorrow — he lines up for that game but the team has the starter listed as TBA — the 38-year-old Kuroda ends the season with a 3.31 ERA and 3.56 FIP in 201.1 innings. He hit a real big wall in mid-August and was just brutal down the stretch. The Yankees will surely make Kuroda the $14M-ish qualifying offer to ensure they get a draft pick if he signs with another MLB team, but they don’t get anything if he retires or heads back to Japan.

I would like to have Kuroda back next season at a reasonable price, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t worried about an older pitcher who’s hit a wall in August two straight years. He earned $15M this season and I would be uncomfortable giving him more. It’s a very fair price.

Categories : Asides, Hot Stove League
  • Kosmo

    If NY is fortunate enough Kuroda would be willing to give it another year pitching for NY then maybe they could take a slightly different approach to how they use Kuroda, let´s say post AS game to decrease his innings/pitch counts then perhaps they could spare him the late season meltdowns. He´s 38 and it appears that he´s not physically up to it.
    It´s uncanny how he managed to pitch to his career norms in 2013. He also is now a lifetime below .500 pitcher.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Yeah. Since it’s happened twice now, you have to think they’ll adjust accordingly next year, if he’s back.

      I want him back.

      • forensic

        I don’t think I’d have a problem if he came back, though a little pay cut would be nice.

        But, it is concerning that it’s not two straight years, and especially that this year started earlier than last year. Does that mean next year will start even earlier than this year? I don’t know, but it does concern me that they’ll pay him for the whole year but only get 2/3rd’s of a year’s worth of production.

        • forensic

          *it’s now two straight years…

    • Bo Knows

      W/L does not matter and shouldn’t even be in the discussion

  • sojuyankee

    It’s possible he may not “hit a wall” in the second halves if the bats came to his games like they do to CC’s, and maybe a little defense also. every time he pitched he had the B team (not even this years A team), and he usually faced the opponents Ace. Our “ace” usually faced a 4th or 5th starter and had this years A-team behind him.

  • RetroRob

    Understanding he seemed to “hit the wall” two years in a row should cause the Yankees to alter his pitching, reducing the total number of innings and pitches thrown. They did ride him hard during the summer months because he’s pretty much all they had, yet a better supporting cast next year might help reduce his innings so he can remain effective.

    Yet less innings means even if he pitches well he’ll be providing less value. I’d still take him on a one-year deal for $15M and if they offer him a QO it’s pretty much the Yankees or back to Japan. It’s not that I can’t see other teams matching that offer, but they would also have to give up a #1 draft pick for a one-year rental on top of the money. Don’t see that happening.

  • mikelf

    You know, Kuroda was not bad at the end of 2012, your recollection notwithstanding.

    http://www.baseball-reference......2&t=p

    • Kosmo

      Kuroda pitched to an ERA of 4.71 in Sept 2012. Not bad ?

      • forensic

        Yup, and even in the last start of August he gave distance, but allowed 2 homers and 4 ER.

      • mikelf

        The premise was that he has hit the wall in August for two straight years. He pitched to a 2.35 ERA in August 2012 and his second half last year was better than his first half. In short, the premise is wrong with regard to 2012.

  • mt

    HK definitely deserves a Qualifying Offer but, if he does come back, hopefully Yanks do go in with a strategy next year post AS break to slow his innings down. QO may be moot since I feel he will retire or go back to Japan (I agree that another team will not want to give up a first round draft pick for him.)

    Those also were tough, pressure innings he pitched because as I recall his run support was lower when compared to other starters, especially Sabathia and anecdotally I rember defense being worse than usual in many of his games.

    Part of me says I hope he doesn’t come back because we need to get where we are eventually going (a world where Jeter may play but not as major force that is post Mo/Pettite and not held together by plugging in older players) sooner rather than later. Our record may be worse without Kuroda next year but at some point we have to get younger players in here (especially when we know, absent a Dodgers situation with the Red Sox or expensive buy-outs, we will already have key old or relatively old players (CC, Teix, Sabathia, Arod(?), Jeter on his last legs) over next two-three years.

  • http://www.draftstreet.com/register.aspx?r=Jedile Jedile

    I say 1yr 15m offer.

    Switch(options):
    case 1: We either start him later in the season (month late, give him time to not be so worn out come post season).

    case 2: “Kur-adjusted Rotation!”
    CC, Kuroda, Nova, S4, CC, S5, Nova, Kuroda, S4, CC, S5, Nova, Kuroda.. etc.

    case 3: CC, Kuroda, Nova, S4, S5

    case 4: Six man rotation

    case 5: Kuroda doesn’t sign with us.

  • Andrew Brotherton

    Next year the team should have far more options in the rotation then this year so he won’t have to be counted on as much. Later on in the year you can piggy-back him. If he retires I’d love to see us go after Josh Johnson. I think you could get him pretty cheap on a bounce back 1yr deal with incentives.