When Jake Buchanan was called up from Oklahoma City to start Saturday’s game in place of Brad Peacock, all indications were that Jake would be immediately returned to AAA. Well, a few days have passed and Buchanan is still on the Astros active roster. Now, the word is Buchanan will be working out of the Astros bullpen. Peacock, who missed Saturday’s start due to a bout with food poisoning, is scheduled to return to the rotation Friday against Detroit.
When Buchanan was called up and we were led to believe that it would be one start and then back to the minors (like Rudy Owens earlier in the season and Jarred Cosart last year) I thought we might see Peacock sent to the bullpen, paving the way for the return of Brett Oberholtzer. So much for that idea.
After taking a look at some of Peacock’s splits, maybe this is for the best. Peacock started the season in the bullpen and posted a 7.45 ERA in 9 & 2/3 innings of work, allowing 12 hits and 8 walks along the way. Peacock was then moved to the rotation and has been there ever since. Although the walks have still been an issue, his ERA is a much more palatable 3.99 as a starter.
But wait… there’s more. Peacock has allowed a .316 batting average on his first 15 pitches of all outings. Comparing that to .194 on pitches 16 through 30 — .220 on offerings 31 through 45 — .233 on pitches 46 through 60 — and .225 on pitches 61 through 75, it’s easy to see why the Astros prefer to keep him in the rotation.