Orioles manager Buck Showalter certainly raised some eyebrows when following his team's 4-2 victory last night, he acknowledged that it's not a given that young starter Brian Matusz regains his velocity. "Most guys that you get, not necessarily Brian, but they all in their career go down," Showalter said. "It's not a normal thing to do, put your arm over your head and jerk it down violently 100 times every fifth day. But I feel confident that he can pitch effectively the way he is, obviously. "We'll see. I hope so. There's two ways to look at it. The pitch-ability part of it has allowed him to defend himself through it against Seattle and Oakland. Hopefully, down the road…it's not a given, but he's shown the ability to pitch with different velocities." Several Orioles get on me regularly because they say that I'm consumed by velocity and perhaps they have a point. However, Matusz consistently pitching in the mid-to-high 80's during his first two big league starts this season – and in his minor league rehab outings from what I'm told – is impossible to ignore. After all, Matusz is a 24-year-old who is expected to be one of the key cogs in the Orioles' rotation for years to come. And his velocity also dipped some last season, according to the web site fangraphs.com. While making eight starts for the Orioles in 2009, Matusz's average fastball velocity was 91.5 miles per hour. Last season, it dropped to 89.9, and this year, I've only seen Matusz hit 90 on a couple of occasions. The 2-0 fastball that Adam Rosales crushed for a two-run homer last night clocked in at 87 miles per hour and the Camden Yards stadium radar gun has been known to be a little generous.
Matusz says that he's not worried about decreased velocity
Baltimore Sun | Jun 7