By Joe Cooper @joeRantSports on April 10, 2014
In yesterday’s second game of the doubleheader against the San Diego Padres, Cleveland Indians fans got to see into the future of the starting rotation. After a few rough outings in Spring Training, the question began to expand to when Bauer would be ready to become a permanent fixture of the Tribe’s staff. In a losing effort, it was still clear that the right-handed 23-year-old is well worth the wait.
Trevor Bauer is a creature of habit, a student of the game and there is nothing he wants more than to be successful at the major league level. He demonstrated his passion after getting out of the sixth inning unharmed fist pumping and slapping his glove. After fanning batters Bauer maintained the “who is next attitude” in his demeanor walking off the mound before the umpire had even rung up the batter.
Out of Bauer’s 18 outs recorded, eight went for strikeouts allowing one earned run, four hits in six innings logged. The 23-year-old was inducing tardy swings from five different pitches displayed Wednesday afternoon.
Manager Terry Francona showed a lot of trust in Bauer when he let the hurler get out of his own jam in a sixth inning bases-loaded situation. Bauer reached back to fire a 96-mph missile to strikeout Tommy Medica to flee the inning and keep the Indians’ hopes alive. The California native left 71.4 percent of batters on base proving he can make the pitches necessary in tight situations.
Out of 62 fastballs (94.8 mph avg., 97 mph max.), 33 were strikes not in play, which proves how tough Bauer is to hit. His curveball averaged a velocity break of -8.23 inches in 14 total pitches. Speeds throughout the afternoon ranged as high as 97 mph and as low as 74 mph, keeping the batters off balanced and guessing. Bauer never allowed the opposition to get comfortable as he even dished out two splitters for strikes.
Bauer revealed that his curveball is a dangerous weapon throwing it in the zone 10 out of 14 times (71.4 percent), only one of which being put in play for a hit. Throwing with the intention to toss additional strikes allowed Bauer to throw 9, 14 and 15 pitch innings from the second inning through the fourth. Only two walks were surrendered in six innings, a major improvement from his first start in 2013 as he allowed seven in five innings.
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