Fausto Carmona

A photo of Fausto Carmona.

Fausto J. Carmona (born December 7, 1983 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic) is a right-handed pitcher for the Cleveland Indians of Major League Baseball. Carmona made his major league debut with the Indians on April 15, 2006. He was initially used as a starting pitcher but later in the season was turned into a reliever, and now is a starting pitcher again.

He is known for his hard sinker and exhibiting good control of his pitches. He did not throw exceptionally hard when he first debuted in the minor leagues at age 18, but has since developed a fastball that can reach 97 mph. He also throws a slider and a changeup, but he only occasionally uses those pitches because he chooses to rely on his sinker to get quick ground ball outs.

Carmona was the first non-rehab start player and full-time roster member of the Lake County Captains to play a game in the big leagues.

On April 9, 2008, The Cleveland Indians signed Carmona to a four-year contract extension through 2011 with three individual club options through 2014. The deal is the most expensive ever for a pre-arbitration starting pitcher.

2006 seasonEdit

On April 15, 2006, Carmona made his debut when he started the game against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. He pitched 6 innings giving up one earned run and striking out four. He would go on to win the game, his only win of the season.

On July 20, 2006, the Indians all-time saves leader Bob Wickman was traded to the Atlanta Braves and Carmona was forced into the role of the team closer despite never recording a major league save.

In the span of seven days (from July 30 through August 5), Carmona recorded four losses and three blown saves for the Indians, including walk-off home runs surrendered to Boston's David Ortiz and Detroit's Iván Rodríguez. Carmona lost the closer's role to Tom Mastny soon thereafter.

After the disastrous closer experiment, Carmona was demoted to the Buffalo Bisons, the Indians' Class AAA affiliate, where he was placed back in a starter's role. He was promoted to Cleveland again in September, and finished the season as a starter. Carmona ended the 2006 season with a record of 1-10 and a 5.42 ERA.

2007 seasonEdit

In 2007, Carmona was originally slated to be the Indians' spot starter and to start the season at the team's minor league affiliate, AAA Buffalo. However, after Cliff Lee went down with an abdominal strain injury in Spring Training that would force him to miss at least the first three weeks of the season, the Indians gave Carmona the opportunity to start in Lee's place. In his first start of the season on April 13, the Chicago White Sox battered him for six earned runs in 4 1/3 innings.

However, Carmona quickly rebounded, holding the New York Yankees' potent offense to just 2 ER in 6 IP in his next start, but he received a no decision. Carmona settled into a groove and won his next five starts, allowing just 5 ER over 39 IP. In the streak, Carmona beat two-time American League Cy Young Award winner Johan Santana of the Minnesota Twins twice and in one of his starts against the Twins, center fielder Torii Hunter was quoted saying, "I can't wait until we face normal pitchers. This guy's sinker is practically unhittable." The first victory came on April 24 in Minnesota, when Carmona allowed just 2 ER over 7 2/3 IP. The second start came at home on May 17, when Carmona tossed his first career complete game shutout, scattering just four hits along the way.

On July 25, Carmona tossed eight shutout innings against the Boston Red Sox in a 1-0 Indians win. The victory capped a 5-0 July for Carmona as he moved into a three-way tie with teammate C. C. Sabathia and Boston's Josh Beckett for the American League lead in wins with 13.

Carmona received serious consideration for the AL Cy Young award, along with teammate C.C. Sabathia, Boston's Josh Beckett and the Angels' John Lackey. True to his dominant 2007 regular season form, Carmona, in his 1st career postseason game in Game 2 of the 2007 ALDS against the New York Yankees and Andy Pettitte, allowed 1 earned run on 3 hits over 9 innings in an extra-inning win for Cleveland. He went on to finish fourth in the 2007 Cy Young vote.

On October 20, Carmona was battered by the Boston Red Sox in Game 6 of the 2007 ALCS, surrendering seven runs in two plus innings. He was knocked out of the game in the third inning of the Indians' 12-2 loss to the Sox at Fenway Park, forcing a seventh game at Fenway the following day. The Red Sox would later go on to win that decisive game en route to their seventh World Series title.

2008 SeasonEdit

The Indians signed Carmona to a four-year, $15 million contract with club options for 2012, 2013 and 2014.

Carmona gets a $750,000 signing bonus and guaranteed salaries of $500,000 this year, $2.75 million in 2009, $4.9 million in 2010 and $6.1 million in 2011. The Indians have options for $7 million in 2012, $9 million in 2013 and $14 million in 2014. The price of the first option could escalate by $1 million and the price on the other two by $2 million each, meaning Carmona could earn up to $48 million. If the options aren't exercised, Carmona will be a free agent for the first time after the 2012 season. The deal matches the highest guaranteed to a pre-arbitration starting pitcher the other was the Cardinals' Adam Wainwright, and it's the highest guaranteed deal for a starting pitcher with only one-plus years of service time.[1] Carmona went on the disabled list on May 24, 2008, after he strained his left hip. He injured it as he ran to cover first base in the third inning of Cleveland's 13-9 loss to the Texas Rangers. He threw one pitch to the next batter, then left the game. He is expected to miss four weeks after MRI results were revealed. [2]

Career StatisticsEdit

2006 Cleveland MLB 38 7 0 0 74.2 88 46 45 31 58 1 10 0 5.42 .298
2007 Cleveland MLB 32 32 2 1 215.0 199 78 73 61 137 19 8 0 3.06 .248
2008 Cleveland MLB 10 10 1 1 58.0 54 22 20 38 23 4 2 0 3.10 .254
Major League Totals 80 49 3 2 347.2 341 146 138 130 218 24 20 0 3.57 .261

Stats as of June 16, 2008


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