Over the weekend, the Cubs claimed reliever Ryan Cook off waivers from the Red Sox. A few days before that, he’d been profiled for BP Boston’s “Rebuilding the Red Sox” series by BP’s Ryan P. Morrison. Given that Cook is now a Cub, we thought you’d enjoy reading that brief profile here at Wrigleyville.
Ryan Cook didn’t make the best impression in a Red Sox uniform this year. Maybe a mere five games and 4.1 innings shouldn’t do a whole lot to make us certain about a player, but as Addison Reed might tell you, there’s struggling, and then there’s bleeding all over everyone and staining their favorite shirts. Cook’s 13 earned runs surrendered during his 4.1-inning span gave him a career ERA with Boston of 27.00. Ichiro Suzuki’s career ERA with Miami is 9.00.
It’s no guarantee, though, that Super-GM Dave Dombrowski and GM Mike Hazen will opt to not offer Cook a contract for 2016 by the non-tender deadline a month from now. As evaluation goes, ERA doesn’t always offer all of the answers, small samples are almost necessarily misleading, and an ERA from a small sample only has value as, say, a hook for a piece about Ryan Cook. Relievers are weird. But it wasn’t so long ago that Cook was one of the AL’s most dominant relievers for two years running, and at $1.4M for a projected arbitration salary (plus the value of club control for 2017), Cook is not a pricey gamble if a return to dominance seems possible.
2015 looks a lot worse than it should, with just 8.2 innings pitched — Cook pitched 42.2 innings at the Triple-A level this season. There, he looked a lot like the 2014 MLB version of himself, with a 3.16 ERA, a 7.6 K/9, and a 3.4 BB/9. His BABIP was way down: .299 while in the Oakland organization and a laughably low .100 BABIP in his 9.1 innings with Pawtucket.
To read the entire piece, be sure to visit BP Boston here.
Lead photo courtesy Greg M. Cooper—USA Today Sports.