Wednesday, June 17, 2009

132 pitches? So what?

Meche followed up his best game as a Royal with his best game as a Royal. Last nights complete game shutout produced a game score of 84 but because it took him 132 pitches there will probably be some that  second guess Trey's decision to let Meche pitch the ninth inning. I personally had no problem with it. This was just the fifth time that he threw 120+ pitches as a Royal so it's not like it's an every fifth day occurrence. Looking at the previous four times we see that there haven't been any long term side effects.

7/25/07 - 120 pitches. Meche wasn't particularly sharp giving up five runs in seven innings.  His next start he gave up just two runs in seven innings (of course it wasn't enough as he took the loss in this one too). The start after that he got rocked but then he ended the '07 season with ten straight starts where he gave up three runs or less.

9/24/07 - 124 pitches.  Eight inning gem in which he only gave up three runs. Next and final start of '07 he went six innings giving up just two runs and striking out seven.

4/27/08 - 129 pitches. This is the game that turned his '08 season around. He entered with an 8.00 ERA but gave up three runs in 6.2 innings. Next start he pitched seven scoreless innings. He gave up five runs in the start after that but then pitched four straight games where he gave up three or less.

5/08/09 - 120 pitches. He only went 5.2 innings in this one - it wasn't a great start at all. Next start was even worse when he gave up five runs in 4.1 innings. He has had only one bad start since then though and has given up just seven earned runs in his last six starts. Sam has suggested that Meche's next three starts were disasters but that's not really true. His second start after the 120 pitch outing he gave up just two runs in six innings.

I think he'll be okay.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

The problem is it becomes systemic. Trey thinks he can leave starters in well past 100, and then he gets burned. See Greinke last night.

thebaseballfish said...

I read somewhere a while back (I think it was in an Edition of Baseball Prospectus) that it isn't the next start but the start after that when a pitcher feels the effects from a high PC outing. Your post regarding Meche, lends additional evidence to that position.

I am far more comfortable with Meche throwing that many pitches than Greinke or Davies. Meche is older, has logged more innings, and is more conditioned to the year-in and year-out rigors of pitching in the majors.

IMO PC is typically too overblown with veteran pitchers, but has value when trying to protect younger guys as they accrue innings on their arms.

Jeff Parker said...

I am far more comfortable with Meche throwing that many pitches than Greinke or Davies. Meche is older, has logged more innings, and is more conditioned to the year-in and year-out rigors of pitching in the majors.


Yep, I agree. I wouldn't want him to do it on a regular basis but once or twice a year isn't going to hurt him.