Stephen Pryor Scouting Report 6.2.12 - Pitch Mix

 .......................................................................................

Q.  This 85% fastball challenge prescription ... does this contradict your complaint about Brandon League "not thinking out there"?  Thought you didn't like predictable 1-0 fastballs.

A.  It doesn't, thanks for asking.  Contradict anything, that is.

Stephen Pryor's fastball passes a point of critical mass.  It's a Goose Gossage, an Armando Benitez fastball.  Pryor's fastball is overwhelming; Brandon League's is most definitely not.  

.

Q.  Why?  Both fastballs are around 97 MPH.

A.  League's fastball reads 97 sometimes, but it's thrown from a low arm slot, it's thrown EVERY BLINKIN' PITCH at knee level, and it sinks.  The result is a flat sidearm fastball that "keeps the bat in the zone a long time."  The hitter dips his back knee and then the bat is on a plane with the pitch the entire time it's in the air.

Pryor's fastball comes over the top, runs downhill and then WHOOOOP shoots back up off the BMX jump.  It's more reliably fast.  It's a different conversation.

"Thinking" for Pryor involves this:  (1) moving the fastball around the zone the best he can.  (2) Throwing as hard as he possibly can.  (3) Making sure he gets strike one.  (4) Throwing 3-4 sliders an inning, total, all right on the black or preferably off the black.  Like the first two sliders he threw to Viciedo.

.

Q.  Will batters swing at a slider even though the advance scouting says he likes to throw it outside the zone?

A.  The strikeout of Konerko, how far was that off the plate?  About two first downs' worth?

If an Aroldis Chapman throws a ball 100 MPH, remember, that adds seven feet to the "length" of the pitch.  Ever been to a batting cage?  Even a broken-down old pug like me can hit 90, 95 MPH if the speed is the same.  

You hear the pop and you swing your bat in rhythm and the ball's there.  That's what they mean by "cheating," simply swinging in time to the release of the ball.  ... now picture yourself swinging in time to 90 MPH, pop, swing ... except this one was 100 MPH.  You know how far it was past your bat?  7 feet!

Now remember, also, the hitter doesn't get to decide to swing when the ball's 10 feet away.  Even if he can swing in 0.20 seconds -- one eyeblink to get your bat into the strike zone!! -- he's got to decide whether to swing when the ball is 30-40 feet away from him.

............

Ever watch the final strikeout of Randy Johnson's no-hitter?  The ball was like 7 feet off the ground.  Joe Morgan, commenting on Randy Johnson in the playoffs in 1995, remarked sadly "You just don't have enough time to decide whether to swing.  You. Just. Don't. Have. Enough. Time.

.

Q.  Don't get beat with your second-best pitch, eh...

A.  The above is a baseball cliche that, a lot of the time, sends Dr. D screaming out into the night... Tom Wilhelmsen will crack off a 12-6 curve and somebody will line a GWRBI.  You'll hear somebody say "you need to throw your best pitch there" ... what is TW supposed to do, throw the same pitch every time?

............

But every cliche has a grounding in truth, and Stephen Pryor is the guy they were thinking of here.  His fastball is amazing, just amazing, and the other pitches need to run with ribbons around the maypole of his fastball.

Pryor don' have a Daniel Bard slider, and he don' have no bidness throwing waist-high sliders down the middle ... or at the very least, he's got no business "showing" a batter his slider twice in one AB.  Not for strikes.  One called strike, first pitch, MAYbe... any further sliders gotta be where they can't hurt him.  Make them beat him on the fastball.  Don't worry, they won't.

Slap me silly, once Pryor goes to the 12 fastball, 3 slider pitch mix, all the sliders on the black or off the black, they're going to make new rules.

.

BABVA,

Dr D

Klat Categories: 

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <ul> <ol> <li> <i> <b> <img> <table> <tr> <td> <th> <div> <strong> <p> <br> <u>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.

Shoutbox

Please log in or create an account to post shouts.
moethedogI figured young at $5-$6M. But he may want more than a year and he's no lock to eat up innings. That's why I like Dickey. The way he lobs the ball up there he's not going to have arm problems. If you could get $3M from the Jays, and if you weren't giving up more too much prospect..... I would love to have him. Way more than Young. Even if Walker develops, what are the chances you go through a year with no loss of your other 4 starters? Kuma and Paxton have 29 starts between them: Felix 27.3 hours 9 min ago
SABR MattDickey is too feast or famine for my taste. I like Chris Young just fine. He won't cost more than 6-7 mil/year I think.3 hours 28 min ago
rick82Yeah, not sure about RJ. When Dickey takes a lickin, he tastes like chickin.6 hours 20 min ago
mojicianHere's how the world's best clock works: "Within the clock, lasers push together a ball of 10 million cesium atoms and cool them to near absolute zero (which helps reduce noise). The ball is tossed up in a 3-foot chamber, passing through a microwave beam. The microwave beam kicks some of the cesium atoms up into a higher energy state, which causes them to emit light." This is the inverse principle of how Felix's changeup (the world's best pitch) works. the ball jump drops its energy state mid flight causing it to absorb light and temporarily dissapear. You heard it on SSI.6 hours 41 min ago
Tacoma RainWhat about Walker?... I'd rather go with Young, having Taijuan as a fall back, and then a couple guys like Wade Leblanc or Jack's reclamation projects waiting in Tacoma than spending our limited budget on a pitcher who may not be needed.7 hours 12 min ago
mojicianOr maybe Dickey is like my dad's temperamental Omega watch. It looks great but stops telling time accurately when it doesn't receive a $600 servicing every few years, or it gets too much or too little oil in its many, many moving parts.7 hours 12 min ago
mojicianI dunno Moe, Dickey seems like a good guy to take a flier on, but at $12 million bucks, he'd be the key off season add. In 2015, he could be Cy Young, or he could be a meatball, and that sort of stuff depends on the air pressure and humidity that day, and how he files his fingernails (saw the R.A. Dickey movie on Netflix. He has a set of emery boards). As fine as a Timex is, if you're going to pay top dollar, the watch should have a sapphire face, a sweeping second hand, and be waterproof to a 1000 feet or so.7 hours 36 min ago
moethedogoops8 hours 19 min ago
moethedogRamirez may have been given his last start. Walker is still a '14 work in progress who will probably get his chance to prove something in 2-3 more Seattle starts. Chris Young gets more expensive and is a bit of a gamble beyond this year. Wilhelmsen is a possibility. I mention all that in regards to this: Toronto is evidently dangling RA Dickey. He's good for 200+ innings, 33 starts and a 100 ERA+. But at $12M he's expensive for a #5. I hated it when Seattle let him go years ago because I love the way knuckleballers take the pressure off your bullpen and the rest of your rotation. They are the Timex watches of MLB staffs.8 hours 20 min ago
moethedogWe know we've got a rotation with #'s 1-4 for next year that looks to be Felix, Kuma, Paxton & Elias. That's strong stuff. It is safe to say that Hultzen starts no higher than AA and is on a short inning count next year. Seattle in September for a start or two may be all we can hope for. Ramirez may have been given his last start. Walker is still a '14 work in progress who will probably get his chance to prove something in 2-3 more Seattle starts. Chris Young gets more expensive and is a bit of a gamble beyond this year. Wilhelmsen is a possibility. I mention all that in regards to this: Toronto is evidently dangling RA Dickey. He's good for 200+ innings, 33 starts and a 100 ERA+. But at $12M he's expensive for a #5. I hated it when Seattle let him go years ago because I love the way knuckleballers take the pressure off your bullpen and the rest of your rotation. They are the Timex watches of MLB staffs.8 hours 24 min ago
moethedogIf the trade was right and Toronto paid down his salary a bit, would you be interested in adding a Dickey for '15? Is he a better get than signing Young at, say $5M, or so? If the trade was right and you got $3M in Toronto loonies, I would be in. He's a heck of a security blanket. Way more so than Young. Of course there's the FA market or a guy like Colon..but the sure bet 200 innings are sure nice to think about.8 hours 25 min ago
MtGrizzlyYeah - two things I doubt we see again this year: Erasmo in the rotation and Morrison in RF.1 day 2 hours ago
SABR MattI'm guessing Ramirez never starts for the Mariners again unless out of absolute necessity...I'm guessing McClendon is EXTREMELY ticked. If for no other reason than that Ramirez made ZERO attempt to adjust to the Rangers' aggressive approach on first pitches. Goldschmidt pointed out in the 4th inning that he'd giving up something like 6 or 7 hits on first pitches and refused to change his approach.1 day 2 hours ago
SABR Mattyeah...we also learned today that Morrison RF in a pennant race = VERY BAD. He cost the Ms at least 3 runs...maybe 4.1 day 2 hours ago
Tacoma RainI just have a hard time believing this coaching staff believes it is a good idea to have Miller try to learn a new position in the middle of his hitting slump and a pennant race.1 day 3 hours ago
moethedogOver on USSM they are suggesting that Lloyd was very close to playing Miller in RF today (with Van Slyke's approval), which seems not to make much sense since the alternative was to rest Cano, evidently. If you played Miller in RF then Cano had to play 2B. A Ty Kelly would fit into a multi-positional role for this team. BTW, Denorfia is a career .801 guy vL. He's at .623 this year, slugging .320. Will be interesting to see who gets the Sept. 1st call ups. Romero and Smoak, certainly. After that?1 day 3 hours ago
MtGrizzlyErasmo Snell returns1 day 4 hours ago
Tacoma RainWell the streak is over... The Mariners had gone 200+ game of not giving up 10 runs or more.1 day 4 hours ago
IcebreakerXLooking at the scoring summary, I wonder why McLendon didn't pull Erasmo in like the 3rd and switch to The Bartender or something. I guess we can look forward to a sweep by the Astros too... The M's really enjoy playing down to horrid teams, don't they?1 day 4 hours ago
IcebreakerXCan someone fill me in on how bad Erasmo was today? I don't feel like watching a dirge performed by tone deaf cats.1 day 4 hours ago