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Too-late idea for stretching out Berrios

Posted by Hosken Bombo Disco , 26 March 2017 · 892 views

jose berrios paul molitor world baseball classic
On Saturday, the Twins announced that young pitcher Jose Berrios would be demoted to Rochester to start the season. The reason, according to manager Paul Molitor, was "that the lack of work and consistency of work ... to try and rush the buildup here in the last ten days to try and get him ready to try and be in that spot didn’t make a lot of sense to me.”

Does this explanation pass muster?

Consider Phil Hughes is a given for the rotation, and that Berrios and Hughes have been on roughly the same pitching schedule this spring:

Feb 25, Hughes: 2.0 innings
Feb 26, Berrios: 2.0 innings

March 2, Hughes: 2.0 innings
March 3, Berrios: 2.0 innings

It was at this point that Berrios went to play for Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic. Meanwhile, Hughes pitched in an intra-squad game on March 7. I will assume Berrios stayed loose or played some catch during that same time.

Berrios and Hughes then made starts on the same day:

March 12, Hughes: 5.0 innings
March 12, Berrios: 5.0 innings

After this, Berrios did not pitch again until the final, while Hughes made a start on March 17 for 5.0 more innings. However, Hector Santiago, teammate of Berrios on Puerto Rico, did say that Berrios threw a 55-pitch session of live batting practice during this time.

Interestingly, both pitchers pitched again on the 22nd:

March 22, Hughes: 2.0 innings
March 22, Berrios: 1.2 innings

This was the game Berrios struck out Giancarlo Stanton and Jonathan Lucroy with the nasty slurve-curve he throws:



And here we sit, heading into Monday March 27. Both Berrios and Hughes would figure to pitch again in a day or two. In my opinion, if anyone needs to be stretched out, it's Hughes, who reported tingling in his fingers between innings last season, then had shoulder surgery.

Obviously we are not privy to some of the things that goes on within the clubhouse and in private. I am also no pitching coach and do not know how pitchers prepare except for what I read on the Internets. However, the explanation that Berrios can't get "stretched out" does not hold up, in my opinion. Will Molitor and the Twins name a date for Berrios's return or the number of starts they plan to give him, or when the expect him to finally be stretched out?

Berrios threw 40 pitches in his last outing the 22nd. How much more stretching out would Berrios need?

How about something like this:
  • March 22, 40 pitches (already complete)
  • Tues. March 28, starting pitcher vs. Tampa Bay (50 or so pitches)
  • Sun. April 2, no game, but a vigorous bullpen session (50-75 pitches - continue scaling upwards)
  • Regular season: Sat. April 8, makes start against the White Sox, with a limit of 5 innings or 75 pitches
That April 8 start is the turn of the fifth starter in the rotation. After that point, wouldn't Berrios be stretched out and ready to take his regular turn in the rotation? Yes? No? Thoughts?

  • Vanimal46 and David HK like this



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HitInAPinch
Mar 27 2017 01:55 AM

1.Hughes:the contract.

2.After having Allen working with Berrios on his windup IN the MLB at the end of last season, I think being with the Twins and Allen in Spring Training is more important to Berrios career than playing in the WBC.

 

Then again, I can't hardly criticizes Berrios too much for wanting to play in the WBC.The excitement in that series is intoxicating!   

 

 

    • Oldgoat_MN and Platoon like this

1.Hughes:the contract.
2.After having Allen working with Berrios on his windup IN the MLB at the end of last season, I think being with the Twins and Allen in Spring Training is more important to Berrios career than playing in the WBC.
 
Then again, I can't hardly criticizes Berrios too much for wanting to play in the WBC.The excitement in that series is intoxicating!

Good post, but you forgot #3. The Contract.
    • Oldgoat_MN and Hosken Bombo Disco like this
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Hosken Bombo Disco
Mar 27 2017 01:52 PM

Other possibilities and variables include: 

  • Berrios is making progress on his change-up delivery but is not there yet
  • Berrios has seemed to run up high pitch counts in the past, and maybe a 75-80 pitch limit for a couple of games only gets him four innings
  • With that fifth spot in the rotation his first two opponents would be the White Sox and maybe he doesn't match up well

 

 

 

Other possibilities and variables include: 

  • Berrios is making progress on his change-up delivery but is not there yet
  • Berrios has seemed to run up high pitch counts in the past, and maybe a 75-80 pitch limit for a couple of games only gets him four innings
  • With that fifth spot in the rotation his first two opponents would be the White Sox and maybe he doesn't match up well

 

I hear what you're saying on those first 2 points-  but I'm chuckling to myself thinking of anyone who wouldn't match up well with the White Sox this year...  5th place for them in '17, book it.  (at least I dearly hope so!)

    • Hosken Bombo Disco likes this
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tarheeltwinsfan
Mar 28 2017 06:43 AM
What effect, if any, would this demotion have on Berrios' future salary and arbitration, and future contracts down the road?