Mariners positive no. 2 – Will Vest puts up more zeros
Another bullpen shoutout! After Steckenrider’s fine two innings, Will Vest came in to throw the final two innings of the ballgame. The Rule 5 Draft pick threw a scoreless inning (technically allowed one unearned run) on Opening Day and had another great relief appearance yesterday.
Vest decided to outplay Steckenrider and throw two innings of scoreless and hitless baseball. The right-hander struck out one batter and issued one walk. Will Vest was much more efficient this go around and threw 17 out of 24 pitches for strikes! That’s huge for a guy that looked like he struggled with control in Spring Training.
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Although the White Sox hit Vest a lot harder than Steckenrider, roughly 90.4 mph but the defenders were in the right spots it seems. It’s also interesting to note that his velocity and spin rates were a bit off yesterday compared to Opening Day. I don’t know if he was fatigued, trying to focus on control, or just didn’t have his best stuff.
On Opening Day, he averaged a 93.6 mph four-seam fastball with a 2,141 rpm spin rate. Yesterday, his average fastball velocity was 93.1 mph and his spin rate was 1,932 rpm.
The same goes for his slider and changeup. His slider and changeup were thrown 85.4 mph and 83.6 mph respectively. Last night, his slider was on average 83.8 mph and his changeup was actually faster at 84.1 mph on average.
Both of his two offspeed pitches’ spin rates were different as well. His slider was 2,533 rpm on Opening Day while his changeup was 1,621 rpm. Last night, his slider was spinning at 2,287 rpm and his changeup was at 1,562 rpm on average.
I might be looking way too into it, but it’s interesting to see the differences. It’s an even better sign that on the days he doesn’t have his best stuff, he still has the ability to pitch just as well.