Drayer reports on the game plan for Felix

DMZ · March 12, 2008 at 8:12 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

(ht to msb for the link)

Drayer gets some nice, in-depth comments on how Felix wants to pitch this year.

I talked to Johjima about this and he told me that the game plan is solidly in place for this year relaying this through interpreter Antony Suzuki:

“I think there are two game plans with Felix. If his sinker is working, great we can use the sinker early in the game and get the strikeouts with his breaking ball because the sinker will make the breaking ball very effective. But if the sinker is not working we will have to use the breaking ball more often and get that sinker as the strikeout pitch. So there are two ways in his game plan, since he has got a great breaking ball and great command he can come up with any kind of sequence as well.”

Good, good. Like the “any kind of sequence”.

I talked to Felix about this after his last start and here is what he had to say.

“That’s true. You know if I have my two seamer working then I am going to throw it a lot. You saw me a couple years ago throw a lot of two seamers, a lot of fastball and I got a lot of success. When my two seamer works I am going to get a lot of groundballs and a lot of quick outs and that’s what I want. If it doesn’t work I will figure out something else, throw the breaking ball, choke the fastball and throw the breaking ball, that’s all. But if I have the fastball in command it’s going to be easier for my breaking ball to work better.”

I love, love, love hearing Felix talk about getting quick ground outs, even more than Kenji discussing a reasonable approach to strikeouts. Felix concentrating on groundballs will still get his strikeouts, and then he’s ridiculously effective.

And I love this kind of wonk-tastic coverage, too. Thanks, Drayer!


7 Responses to “Drayer reports on the game plan for Felix”

  1. lailaihei on March 12th, 2008 8:40 pm

    This is pretty cool, I love this kind of coverage. Much better than “Stop the presses! Ichiro is 0-21!” or “The Mariners released oft-injured and ineffective LHP Horacio Ramirez.” Oh wait, I actually liked the [latter] of those.

    And wait… Felix is throwing a sinker now? Awesome.

  2. Dave on March 12th, 2008 9:28 pm

    Yea – he’s saying the right things here. This isn’t typical “establish the fastball” and “pitch inside like a man” crap. Felix is exactly right – when he’s commanding his fastball, he’s lights out, because no one can hit that 96 MPH two-seamer at the knees. But when he can’t put it at the knees, his reaction has to be to mix his pitches and get guys off balance, because the four seam fastball is still his worst pitch.

    Telling the media is one thing, though, and doing it is another. If Felix really follows through on this, it’s great news. I’ll hold out hope.

  3. PositivePaul on March 12th, 2008 9:30 pm

    I heard that the new minor league pitching overseer, Dave Wallace, worked a bit with Felix over the winter. I’m wondering if that’s part of this…

  4. gwangung on March 12th, 2008 10:10 pm

    Telling the media is one thing, though, and doing it is another. If Felix really follows through on this, it’s great news. I’ll hold out hope.

    Hey, this is progress in telling the media, at least.

    It’s always about execution of strategy in the end. But it helps to have a good strategy in the first place.

  5. jlc on March 12th, 2008 11:24 pm

    HoRam gone and potential good news from Felix. The best Mariner day of ST.

  6. Steve T on March 13th, 2008 3:28 am

    Wow, I cannot describe how much nicer to read this is than Norm Charlton’s B.S. Let’s hear it for a thousand quick groundball outs!

  7. joser on March 13th, 2008 12:40 pm

    Well, one factor is going to be how long it takes to determine if the two-seamer is “working” or not. You can get into a hole pretty fast if you keep watching moonshots going over your head thinking “Well, that was a mistake, but maybe it’ll start working for me after a few more pitches.”

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.