Not as much of a given as the other guys I’ve listed, but Colon will probably have to pitch his way out of a job. Before 2003, Colon was just another guy, a righthanded starter with mediocre minor league numbers. Converted to the pen in 2003, he had a pretty good year in Greenville, mostly in middle relief. In 2004, he jumped to Richmond, where he put up a career-best strikeout rate and a decent ERA, still in middle relief, and got promoted to the big club late in the season. He continued to pitch well, nothing spectacular, but plenty good for a rookie, posting a 3.32 ERA. (Though he gave up two unearned runs. There, happy?)
Colon, since moving to the pen, has struck out about seven men per nine innings. If it were a little better I’d be a little more excited, but it’s pretty good, about the same as Reitsma and better than anyone else in the pen. If they have a power arm, Colon is it… Had some wicked splits last season in the majors. Lefties hit .344/.382/.438 against him, righties just .179/.277/.205. I don’t have minor league splits (anyone know where I can get them?) and the major league numbers are in a very small sample. Didn’t allow a home run in the majors last season, only four in the minors, and generally his home runs allowed numbers look good. Between that and the splits, he’s starting to look like an improved Gryboski. His control is in about Gryboski’s range as well, maybe a little better judging from his minor league stats.