Q: Now that the Rangers are running out of starting pitchers due to season-ending injuries, do you think it has anything to do with Nolan Ryan’s emphasis on starting pitchers going deep into every game?
A: The injuries to which you refer are to Colby Lewis (torn flexor tendon in right elbow) and Neftali Feliz (Tommy John surgery). And I’m not willing at this point to make any connection whatsoever between them and what in my mind is a sound strategy to train starting pitchers to go deeper into games.
...Personally, I’m all for what the Rangers are doing with starting pitchers throughout their organization. It’s about time starting pitchers be trained to throw seven-plus innings and 120-plus pitches per start.
When it comes to younger (25-under) arms, you do have to watch increasing work loads by too much from one year to the next. That’s why you see the trend toward innings limitations — most notably on Stephen Strasburg. That’s sound strategy, too.
But you can’t tell me that this generation of pitchers — who are bigger and better-conditioned than their predecessors — can’t pitch 245 innings per season (7 innings x 35 starts) without risk once they become established big-league starters.
...Injuries happen; they are part of the game — especially for pitchers. But training starting pitchers to only throw six innings and 100 pitches, then look into the dugout for the manager to come get them, just isn’t right, either.
Posted: August 08, 2012 at 09:07 PM | 19 comment(s)
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