On Intentional Talk, they bring up Matt Harvey. Who hasn't pitched in year-and-a-half, of course. Rose axs, "What's a successful year for him?!" Millar goes, "32 starts. If he gets 34, that's awesomeness. Let's just get to 32."
:: blinks :: Why isn't he shooting for 2016 or 2017? Do I hear 2018, just to be conservative?
Ah, you say, but Hultzen had a shoulder. Okay, let's tick off those precedents, starting with Erikkkk, Chris Carpenter, Gil Meche, and the other 9,000 of them.
It's a funny thing. You would never see this in football, where everybody pro and amateur just totally spaces out that precedents have occurred. "Let's see, Marshawn ran for 2 yards on the opening play. 2nd-and-8. What's the correct play here? Hmmmm.... (X-Y)2 * 16 / pi = obviously the proper decision here is a power sweep.
Wait. ... ? has 2nd-and-8 been played before?" [Dr. D rolls eyes, hands over 2-8 tendency chart]
When somebody tells you that Danny Hultzen needs to aim for 2016 "because he's been off a year," know that they are grovelling in ignorance. We mean it in a good way.
Something was different about Hultzen's delivery, "different" in the Japanese sense. "Different" as a euphemism for "retarded." What was it?
Ah! Every other pitcher "stands tall" to start the windup. This straightens his spine, puts him on the centerline, organizes his arms and legs, and floats his weight as a tempo into the weight sink. By "every other pitcher" Dr. D means, he cannot think of one specific pitcher who is an exception. You?
But Hultzen takes his sign and then CRROUUUCHES with a nose-lock as if he were preparing to take down a fawn. To begin a 5-stage (centrifugal) sports motion with tension is kind of weird. Imagine if Mo' Dawg were coaching you to swing a 1-wood, you addressed, and then TENSE EVERYTHING AS HARD AS YOU CAN!!
Works for him, though. His CG stays low. The anti-Matt Thornton.
He did step more down the centerline. Except for that, no change. He said as much.
:: draws martyred sigh :: I know, I know. The point is they don't need him this year. So why can't you say that? At least obliquely? "As long as he's been off, and with our depth chart, Danny has got the luxury of taking things at his pace."
I thought this guy was supposed to have a Cole Hamels changeup. He threw one or two. It/they broke HIGH. Way high. He cut under them with his hand. No, this isn't an innocent Spectator typo, so no essays there Matty.
That's not a changeup. Oh! Wait. Taijuan's spikeball is a changeup. Felix' dry spitter is a changeup. WBC-san's shuuto is a changeup. Of COURSE Hultzen's cutter is a changeup.
I took one look at this abomination and lunged for my post-op sublingual Zofran. I'm here to tell you it was just in time to prevent a big mess. Well, maybe G and Grumpy will smile at the reference. Bah humbug. :- P
Forget the Hamels template. Until such time as Deuce shows this legendary Cavaliers cambio.
You mooks seemed to have noticed that, "not having pitched in two years" notwithstanding, Danny Hultzen wandered onto the mound and threw 96.1 MPH like he was having a catch with his sister (or with Will Ferrell, whichever has worse shoulder action).
One of 'em, he came Laredo and up in the zone, and the lefty batter swung with his eyes closed. Well, once every few games you see that, where the hitter effectively can't see the ball. He continues on with his business afterward, hoping nobody will notice, but you can tell he never saw it. Like me trying to spar with a legit UFC guy. You feel it but your eyes didn't catch it.
Once every three pitches, you "re-set" with a heavy breath if you're nervous. (The human "sigh" mechanism reboots the brain mildly, dissipating minor pain and fear. You could look it up.) Hultzen decided to go with three re-boots per pitch.
Superb presence of mind. Really. He chose his re-boots. He was thinking.
He threw two hooks that I saw. The arm action popped my eyes WIIIIIDE open. Hultzen's back foot snapped way up behind the ball. The Rockies' eyes popped open no less. We are talking Barry Zito-class yo yo action here.
Ain't just me. The first hook came in 78 MPH, and somehow the RH hitter tipped it foul behind him. Blowers: "Wow. THAT one fooled him!" Barry Zito, I tell ya.
I'm pulling off the Cole Hamels shtick. Shall we go with Barry Zito 94 MPH? Jury's out.
Image: "Mark," creative commons flickr. MAN I dig that photo :- )