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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Scouting Report, RHP Dan Haren

The 29-year old Haren (turns 30 in September), was drafted in the 2nd round out of Pepperdine in 2001, and made his debut with the Cardinals in 2003, and was traded to the A's in 2004 for Mark Mulder. The Three-time all-star (2007-2009), was then traded to Arizona for Brett Anderson, Carlos Gonzalez, and top-prospect Chris Carter among others. I think that Billy Beane wound up winning that trade, as the Diamondbacks haven't made the post-season since acquiring Haren. Haren is extremely durable (hasn't missed a start in 4+ years), and has made 33+ starts and 216+ innings with an ERA under 3.75 in 4 of the 5 years. One statistic of note, since 2006, he has made 34 August and September starts, and his ERA is 5.18 while allowing 263 hits and 33 home runs in 217 1/ 3 innings. In his career, he's 1-0 in five appearances (four starts), with a 3.77 ERA, and 0.97 WHIP. Last year he faced the Mets and got the win, but he didn't throw well: 7 innings, 5 earned runs.

Haren knows how to pitch and isn't afraid to throw any pitch in any count. He hasn't look at video or scouting report of opposing hitters in two years, and wants the hitters to have to adjust to him. He has a deliberate delivery and throws from a high 3/4s arm slot with a riding 89-92 mph fastball, a sharp cutter, a curve and a late-diving split. He uses his split as his strike out pitch in 0-2 and 1-2 counts. His best pitch this year has been his curve, with his split and cutter the best pitches over his career. This year he's getting an outstanding 36% of swings at balls out of the strike zone, and 11% swing and miss rate. Throws 1st pitch strike 67% of the time, so be ready to swing. He's striking out close to 9 K/9, and walks < 2 W/9, which is outstanding.

This year Haren is 7-8 with a 4.6 ERA and 1.35 WHIP, mainly due to an inflated BAPIP of .351. His FIP is 3.82, which is in-line with his career ERA (3.71). He's averaging close to 7 innings per start, although his last outing was poor versus the Padres: 5 innings, 8 hits, 6 runs and 2 home runs.

He's a front-line starter, who is owed $25.5 million in 2011-2012, with a $15.5 million option ($3.5 million buyout) in 2013.The Diamondbacks are not actively trying to move him as they still feel they have a core of players that can win within the next few years, but he can be had for the right price (two future aces and...).

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