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August 15, 2014

Pebble Hunting

Arizona's Pitching Problems

by Sam Miller


I remember on Opening Day, when Brandon McCarthy was facing the Giants, and it seemed like he might just be the Cy Young front-runner. He struck out all three batters in the first. He got the Giants in order on seven pitches in the second. His curveball was lethal, and his fastball

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5 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

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BPKevin

Love the article, but beyond breaking down all the numbers, I recalled reading somewhere that the Diamondbacks changed McCarthy's pitch selection (perhaps to save his arm) and that the Yankees staff encouraged him to throw his cutter again, a pitch the Diamondbacks wanted him to move away from. As a Yankee, he’s thrown more cutters and four-seamers thus reducing his sinker & curveball usage.
If pitch selection was instrumental in success, this would be reflective of coaching, no?

Aug 15, 2014 04:46 AM
rating: 5
 
Bryan Cole

Here's one place:
http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/harper-brandon-mccarthy-real-deal-yankees-bringing-back-cutter-article-1.1873280

Brooks Baseball says that McCarthy threw 15 splitters in his last five starts with Arizona, and then the same number in his very first start with the Yankees. He's now up around 25/start, still far below the 40-something per game he was averaging in Oakland.

(source: http://www.brooksbaseball.net/outcome.php?player=435221&b_hand=-1&gFilt=&pFilt=FA|SI|FC|CU|SL|CS|KN|CH|FS|SB&time=game&minmax=ci&var=count&s_type=2&startDate=01/01/2012&endDate=08/15/2014)

Aug 15, 2014 06:32 AM
rating: 3
 
Pat Folz

Why on earth would you acquire a veteran pitcher who's been successful and then change his approach so drastically? Not sure if that's a coaching problem or a front office problem, but either way it's a problem.

Aug 16, 2014 16:52 PM
rating: 0
 
Pat Folz

(referring to Arizona)

Aug 16, 2014 16:52 PM
rating: 0
 
John Carter

Well, I guess I should go back to the sources, but since you brought it up here and there's probably not much discussion going on there: how do they separate Tony LaRussa's success from Dave Duncan's or Leo Mazzone's from Bobby Cox's? Based on the success Duncan has had without LaRussa and the success Cox had without Mazzone - and the lack of success Mazzone had without Cox (granted, all small Ns), it seems that, if anything, they are crediting the wrong guy in both those cases.

Aug 15, 2014 12:11 PM
rating: 1
 
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The Prospectus Hit Lis... (08/15)
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Premium Article Pebble Hunting: The Un... (08/12)
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