J.T. Chargois could be a diamond in the rough
I don’t know what the Twin front office was thinking or the 28 teams that passed on J.T. Chargois but I do like that the Dodgers scooped him on waivers from the Twins. The Twins took a chance on putting Chargois on waivers and it almost paid off as 28 other teams passed on him but ultimately they lost the gamble and an arm that you would normally want to keep within your organization even if it has been through the ringer.
The once highly regarded Chargois may never pitch for the Dodgers but this is the right kind of arm to take a chance on. It was just July of 2016 that he represented the Twins in the Futures game after being their 2nd round pick in 2012. The Twins had three first round picks in 2012 and two second-round picks. The first two picks were Byron Buxton and Jose Berrios who are expected to be part of the core of this year’s Twin roster.
Chargois was made available because of his arm problems including a bizarre stint last summer but if he can healthy (can any Rice pitcher get healthy?) he could be exactly what every team is looking for these days, a hard-throwing setup man who can dominate a lineup one time through. The Dodgers could take the chance because he still has an option left, I’m just shocked the Padres or Marines or Angels weren’t able to figure out a way to do the same.
The final damage for Chargois in September was a 2.84 ERA and 13-3 K/BB ratio in 12.2 innings. Opposing batters hit just .205/.255/.273 against Chargois, while his swinging strike rate jumped to a much more stomachable 12 percent. In fact, if we lop off Chargois’ brutal first outing of September, he closed the season by allowing one earned run over his final 11.1 innings (0.79 ERA) with a 10-2 K/BB ratio and a .421 OPS against. He told me in September that it basically boiled down to him getting his legs underneath him and finally feeling comfortable on the big-league mound.
Course they were talking about 2016 and 2017 was a lost year for Chargois. Sometimes that lost year becomes someone else’s lost treasure.
“This place is crazy, man. This is awesome. It’s like Disney World or something,” he said, sitting at his locker Monday morning in the clubhouse at Camelback Ranch.
“Look at this place – it’s so bright and merry. Even when I was playing catch yesterday I was like, ‘The ball is so light. Why is everything so light and fluffy here?’”