Sunday, April 13, 2008

Dice vs. Lizard

I love watching Daisuke Matsuzaka pitch. The guy has a hilarious delivery, like a combination of pitching and belly dancing. Plus, it's Daisuke vs. Matsui, Godzilla vs. Mothra (or something along those lines). Both pitchers have shown control problems early in the game; Daisuke wiggled out of it but Hughes let up three runs. Suck.

One things I've noticed about Hughes is that he seems wary to throw his change-up or slider. While his fastball and curveball are plus, a starter must have more weapons. He did throw an ok change-up to Varitek but Molina had to talk him into it. It's obvious that Hughes is going to be a very good pitcher; his fastball has good life and his curveball can be downright nasty. But unless he refines his control AND starts mixing in more pitches, even as show pitches, he's going to struggle.

Another note: Hughes has trouble throwing his curveball to his glove side. It might be a mechanical issue. Some have postulated that he changed his mechanics after his knee injury last year, causing his arm to lag slightly behind his body. That could explain his loss of fastball command and tendency to throw the curveball to his arm side. I have no idea how hard it would be to fix his mechanics or even if it would be necessary. But it might help his development in the long run even if it takes a little time in the minors.

7 comments:

Adam said...

Totally agree about the Hughes issue. If the mechanic is determined to be the cause of the weakness in his curveball, and also his lack of faith in his other pitches, it must be corrected. Hughes is the future Ace of the Yankees and everything must be done to keep him on track. Ian Kennedy is NOT the future of anything, in my book, he blows.

sanstodo said...

Eh, I wouldn't be so hard on Kennedy. He's learning to trust his stuff in the big leagues which can be intimidating. He's not overpowering by any means but he should give himself more credit. If he attacks hitters and gets himself in better counts, he'll be able to expand the zone with his pinpoint command much more easily.

It's going to be tough to sort out Hughes' mechanics (possibly an offseason project) but it will be worth it.......if that's actually the issue. I'm not an expert on mechanics by any means.

Adam said...

Where was Kennedy's pinpoint command his last start when he threw like 50% balls?

I'm not sold on him being anywhere what the Yankee rotation needs.

Mooch said...

see if KC will continue it's rash of stupidity in contract signings (Guillen, Meche) and extend it to trades: Kennedy for Bannister? I'd love that :) The praise is out there, numerous articles have been written, but Bannister is the next Greg Maddux so he will be around for years.

Adam said...

I like your thinking Smoochie. Even further out of left field...Kennedy for Hamels?

:)

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