Sep 20, 2012; Bronx, NY, USA; Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Joel Carreno (34) pitches during the seventh inning against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Yankees won 10-7. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE
Carreno is definitely worthy of a pickup and is the type of move a team makes that could have some measure of impact on their roster. Carreno struggled mightily in Toronto last season in 11 appearances, however, he was really good the previous year in 11 appearances. His struggles in 2012 came from walking too many hitters, something that Carreno in general wasn’t terrible with in years prior to last. Without knowing the particulars, I would assume there was something that happened that threw off his control, or maybe it was just one of those seasons. For his career, Carreno only walks about three batters per nine innings.
Carreno turns 26 in March and has experience both starting and relieving. He does work better in the bullpen because his change up has never truly become more than a true show me pitch. Out of the bullpen, which the Tigers could potentially use, Carreno can work his low to mid 90’s fastball, along with a plus slider that he owns. His fastball command gets away from him from time to time, and that is where he can tend to get hit. Carreno tends to be a fly ball pitcher. That might not work in Toronto, but shouldn’t kill him if he was in Detroit.
Carreno to me is kind of a poor mans version of Al Alburquerque in the sense that he lacks the upper 90’s fastball and really owns two quality pitches. His slider though is a definite swing and miss offering like Alburquerque however. Carreno in contrast to A.A. has been durable thus far in his career.
I’m not saying Carreno is the second coming, otherwise the Jays likely would’ve found a way to keep him, but he is exactly the kind of pick up teams can make now on the cheap that could have real value.
Only problem is, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him picked off early in the waivers process. So he likely won’t even make it to the Tigers.