SAN FRANCISCO – While the 2018 season hasn’t quite gone the Giants’ way, the one ray of hope for the club is the young pitching. In a dwindling season, Bruce Bochy is taking advantage of the situation to test the limits of his rookie arms.
After a stellar outing by Giants’ starter Chris Stratton last night and a deep pitch counts by Andrew Suarez and Dereck Rodriguez in the same week, it’s clear that Bochy is wanting to test the limits of his young pitchers.
“I think it can be huge for their development, I really do,” Bochy said. “We talked about it last night but for a pitcher to know that hey sometimes we’re looking for you to not just go six innings, give a quality start, but hey we want you to be the closer too or pitch deep in the game. They need to know they have that ability so now they’ve done it they know they can do it again.”
The Giants pitching woes have plagued them for two seasons as injury after injury forced the team to platoon a starting rotation. However, this opportunity was not wasted as young pitchers like Dereck Rodriguez, Chris Stratton, Andrew Suarez, and Derek Holland kept the Giants at .500 in a season that heavily lacked run support. In a season where the Giants refused to be called “spoilers” they are now playing for pride and even using the opportunity to give young players the ability to find their limits as athletes.
“I’ve always believed you can’t do it every time out but doing it helps building arm strength.” Bochy said. “You have a guy throw 120, 125 pitches and then he throws 100 and that’s an easy game for him so I think that’s good for them sometimes.”
However, Bochy may have an old school way of thinking as he himself has noticed an overall attitude shift towards not going deep into pitch counts.
“I think it gets to the point where you don’t see numbers up there, and numbers I’m talking about pitches, 115-120, anymore.” Bochy said. “The alarm goes off now when you get around the 100 pitch limit, all the sudden, ‘Hey now we’re getting in uncharted territory,’ where that used to be the norm. Lincecum probably averaged 1,520 pitches.”
Lincecum didn’t earn the nickname “The Freak” for nothing but we have a feeling Bochy may be exaggerating a little on this one.
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