Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Tanaka not worried about diminished velocity

Think it's a big deal Masahiro Tanaka isn't throwing as hard anymore? Don't.

That seems to be the message Tanaka is sending as he prepares to face the Nationals Tuesday night, with the right-hander recently telling The LoHud Yankees Blog his diminished velocity isn't an issue.

"I guess velocity is important in some aspects, but for me, I look at more of my command of the pitches since I'm being able to locate the ball where I want to," Tanaka said. "So for me I think that's more important."
Tanaka's fastball reportedly averaged 93 mph in his most recent start against the Mariners, a few steps up from the 91 it did in his four previous outings. Still, Tanaka was often able to get outs with pitches in the 89-90 range as well -- a good sign for the team given his partially torn UCL.
New York manager Joe Girardi expressed no concern over Tanaka's velocity, noting that it actually isn't much lower than it was last year.
"His average velocity has been the same," Girardi said. "It's just maybe he hasn't hit the 95, 96. I'm sure he feels good about it, and he feels better that he knows it's there, but his average velocity was pretty similar."
And so far this season, so have Tanaka's results. In five starts surrounding a month-long DL stint, the Yankees' ace is 3-1 with a 2.76 ERA -- having allowed just two earned runs in his last 20 1/3 innings.
Indeed, the Yankees have reason for confidence in the veteran right now, even if the radar gun sometimes treats him differently.
"We've seen a lot of pitchers be extremely successful throwing 87, 88 -- we saw Mike Mussina (who) threw 88 and won 20 games -- but it does allow him to do some different things," Girardi said.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)