Pitchers, catchers, insights

Posted on February 18th, 2007 – 2:50 PM
By Howard

Chatter about sports got more interesting today with pitchers and catchers reporting. There’s an interesting story from LaVelle about this season being pitching coach Rick Anderson‘s biggest challenge since he took the job in 2002, finding the arms to fill the bottom 2 spots in the rotation (assuming Santana, Bonser and Silva fill the first 3) from among the assorted candidates young and old. I’m especially interested in Kevin Slowey, who hasn’t seen any big-league time but is talked about as Radke 2.0, in terms of being a right-handed control pitcher.

People ask what makes one coach better than others and it’s not too often when insider glimpses can be pried form the lips of those who don’t want to speak ill of the departed. However, Juan Rincon gave this up in the Anderson story:

When I had some issues with my mechanics, the other guy [former pitching coach Dick Such] wasn’t able to tell me anything. ‘Andy’ picked it up right there. He’s very good. And I can tell how he’s helped the other guys. The younger guys especially. If I’m tipping [my pitches] or jumping out [on my delivery], he’s able to tell me right away.

Players who provide such insights are worth their weight in inside fastballs and line drives to the writers who cover them and, by extension, to the fans who care. Thanks, Juan and LaVelle.

One more note: I set the radio in the 220mobile (a Scion xB with XM add-on) to KSTP this morning. How many times will I turn to the Good Neighbor by mistake before getting used to the fact that the Twins have gone down the dial? Guess I’ll be listening to a bit less techno.


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