Tahlequah Daily Press


June 6, 2014

Tulsa hurler getting called up to start for Rockies

DENVER — Eddie Butler controls his emotions about as well as he does his pinpoint fastball.

At least outwardly, anyway.

On the eve of his major league debut, the Colorado Rockies' prized pitching prospect hardly showed any traces of tension. The team is bringing Butler up from Double-A Tulsa to pitch against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday and hoping he adds a spark to a scuffling starting rotation.

The 22-year-old is taking it all in stride.

"If I go out there and pitch six innings and have us in the ball game, that's going to be a great day," said Butler, who was 4-4 with a 2.49 ERA with the Drillers this season.

The Rockies made one thing abundantly clear — they're not counting on Butler to swoop in to rescue their season, only to keep them in games.

"He's unflappable," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "Probably already pitched his major league debut in his mind."

Butler sounded more like a veteran than a rookie as he addressed a room full of reporters. Sure, the original call that he was coming up was "a little nerve-wracking," but once he steps onto the mound, he insisted he will be in his comfort zone. He's hardly intimidated by being at hitter friendly Coors Field or throwing against a Dodgers lineup that features hitters such as Yasiel Puig and Hanley Ramirez.

"It's another team. It's another guy in the box," Butler said. "I'm going to attack them and give the guys a chance to win."

Butler made it to the big leagues almost two years to the day since he was taken with the 46th overall pick. That was the timetable in his mind, too.

Right on schedule — and in the nick of time, especially with the rotation banged up. The Rockies placed Jordan Lyles on the 15-day disabled list Thursday with a fractured left hand. They're already missing starters Tyler Chatwood (strained elbow) and Brett Anderson (fractured left index finger).

"I just want to get out here and help the guys win," Butler said.

Expect to control his nerves?

"We're going to find out," he said. "Definitely try to suppress them to an extent, funnel them and make them be a beneficial thing for me."

There's been a lot of hype surrounding Butler as he's risen through the Rockies' farm system. He was 7-1 with a 2.13 ERA at short-season Grand Junction in 2012 and was stellar during stops at three different levels last season, going a combined 9-5 with an organization-best 1.80 ERA.

After a solid spring training, Butler was sent back to Tulsa for more experience.

"It's really come around and that's what's given me the opportunity to be here," he said.

Butler has already glanced ahead at the schedule, to see which team he will face after the Dodgers. Turns out, it's the team he grew up watching — the Atlanta Braves. He counts Greg Maddux and John Smoltz as his boyhood idols.

The low-key Butler pitches more like Maddux, relying on control rather than overpowering stuff.

"He'll take the mound on Friday and expect to do well — that's more than half the battle," Weiss said.

Text Only
  • Yurcich ready for second season

    With the 2014 season on the brink, Mike Yurcich, Oklahoma State University football offensive coordinator, is ready for his second year at the helm after coaching a powerful offensive squad a year ago.

    July 28, 2014

  • James_Ethan-(12)-vs.#2CC63C.jpg Back on the line

    RiverHawks’ Ethan James returns to the line healthy and ready for 2014

    RiverHawks offensive lineman Ethan James will enter the 2014 season healthy – something the team, and James, were not in 2013.

    July 25, 2014 2 Photos

  • Sooners shifting several positions

    Experience comes from encountering the same things in the same ways over and over again. Oklahoma’s Geneo Grissom and Julian Wilson have that at defensive end and nickleback in bunches.
    However, both will be seeing new things when practice begins. Grissom is moving to outside linebacker. Wilson will be getting a look at cornerback as his senior season begins

    July 25, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Better police needed for college teams enticed to cheat

    The NCAA once cracked down on colleges that went too far luring top prospects, then it targeted teams that lathered players with special treatment. That was until the NCAA's get-tough approach backfired, rendering it ineffective and creating an opportunity for those who want to play dirty.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • BobBowlsby.jpg Media Week: Change is coming

    Changes are coming to college athletics.
    That was the theme of the state of the conference speech by Big 12 Conference commissioner Bob Bowlsby on the first day of Big 12 Football Media Days.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Peterson.jpg Cowboy quandary: OSU defense trying to replace seven starters

    A year after the best defensive team in the Mike Gundy era, the questions now surround how those few returning starters and second-year defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer can maintain that high level of efficiency.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Really one true champion?

    I decided to spare the colleagues in front of me – and myself from making a scene – by holding back flipping my table at the Big 12 Conference Football Media Days in Dallas.
    I had become exhausted by the constant use and misrepresentation by the Big 12 with their moniker of “One True Champion.” If they are going to live with the slogan, then they need to abide by that slogan.
    Perhaps its a simple case that they are keeping constant with the poor math of the 10-team Big 12 Conference.

    July 23, 2014

  • Hill expected to be used in multiple facets

    The picture became a little clearer recently of how Big 12 Conference Newcomer of the Year Tyreek Hill will be utilized in the Oklahoma State offense.
    And the picture is rather wide.

    July 23, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Expectations too high for a rehabbing Woods

    Tiger Woods finished near bottom last weekend at Royal Liverpool, drawing out his drought of major tournament wins. Despite the disappointing showing, Woods' return to form remains a matter of when, not if.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • shock pic.jpg Time to rest

    Shock beats San Antonio before entering All-Star break

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo


Do you believe school administrators and college presidents in Oklahoma are paid too much?

Strongly agree.
Somewhat agree.
Somewhat disagree.
Strongly disagree.
     View Results
Press Sports Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow