It can be extremely entertaining when a hometown sports figure grows up to play for a team near where he grew up. That was the case with Tyson Ross and the Oakland Athletics. Things looked really good in the minor leagues and when he spot started in 2010 and 2011, the potential appeared to be nearly ready to explode. When he arrived in 2012 however, very little went well. Now he is with a new team and trying to make a new start. Will he be successful?
We are talking about someone who last season was 2-11 with a 6.50 ERA and a WHIP of 1.814. Those numbers clearly show you that something didn’t work right. Either that or something odd was going right for him before and just stopped. This season he finds himself in Spring Training with the San Diego Padres and it looks like he is more than ready to put last season behind him.
One factor that should make things move along smoothly for Ross this year is pitching coach Darren Balsley. It’s nothing against the pitching coach working for the Athletics but sometimes certain pitchers just work better when they have a magical chemistry with their pitching coach. Early on, it seems that Balsley and Ross have that bond forming quickly. They are trimming the number of fastballs Ross throws and working to better his changeup in addition to leaving his nasty slider like it is.
Ross is confident that he is about to embark on the first good season of the rest of his career. I think he is correct. It might not be the greatest season ever and he probably won’t win the Cy-Young this season. What we see him do this year however, will be a solid foundation on which to build an award winning career.