10 September 2010
The Diamondbacks have acquired right-handed pitcher Matt Gorgen, 23, from the Tampa Bay Rays as the Player to be Named Later in the Chad Qualls trade. Gorgen is coming off an all-star season for the AA Montgomery Biscuits, finishing 3-2 with a sparkling 1.65 ERA and 22 Saves. Gorgen struck out a solid number of AA batters (8.6K/9) and did an excellent job of limiting home runs (0.4 HR/9), but did struggle with the base on balls (3.9 BB/9). These numbers combine to give Gergen a 3.40 Fielding-Independent ERA.
Although Gorgen's raw stats are excellent, there are a few things to be worried about. In addition to the high walk totals, Gorgen allowed a lot of fly balls in 2010, finishing with a GB/FB ratio of 0.66. Somehow only 2 of those many fly balls turned into home runs. Gorgen also showed extreme splits between right and left-handed batters. He dominated righties, allowing only 13 hits in 94 ABs (.138 AVG), but left-handers hit .260 against Gorgen and drew 13 walks in 92 plate appearances.
Matt Gorgen was drafted in the 16th round of the 2008 draft out of the University of California-Berkeley. His twin brother Scott, a 4th round pick in 2008 for the Cardinals, pitched in AA last year, and is also a good prospect. Gorgen was generally rated to be around the 15th-20th best prospect in the Rays' organization, which is one of the best systems in the Majors. He throws a fastball in the low 90s, and has a good change-up and has a decent breaking pitch. The key for Gorgen is throwing strikes - he walked too many batters in AA, and also in last year's Arizona Fall League. Still, he has been quite successful overall, and AAA Reno should be a good test for him in 2011. Getting him for Chad Qualls is a nice trade, since Qualls was expensive and doing nothing with the Diamondbacks. With the Rays, Qualls has a 6.57 ERA, but has turned in 11 scoreless outings out of 16 appearances.