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Sowers

Unread postby jameseboy » Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:13 pm

"In 2006, he was a non-roster invitee at the Indians' spring training, but did not make the club's Opening Day roster, beginning the season with Buffalo. In 15 starts for the Bisons, he picked up where he left off in 2005, posting a sterling 9-1 record and 1.39 ERA. Baseball America named him the #3 prospect in the International League.[13]


[edit] Major leagues
Sowers' performance for Buffalo in 2006 earned him a promotion to Cleveland on June 20 where he made his major league debut against the Reds on June 25, taking the loss (5 IP, 4 ERs, 5 Hs, 2 HRs, 3 SOs, 2 BBs). He tossed his first major league complete game shutout on July 22, 2006, against the Minnesota Twins, allowing 4 hits and 1 walk while striking out 4. Six days later, he threw another shutout—this one a 1-0 gem against the Seattle Mariners—becoming the first Indians rookie to throw back-to-back shutouts since Dick Tidrow in 1972.[14] In his next start against Boston, he extended his scoreless inning streak to 22 before yielding an RBI double in the fifth inning."

At this point Sowers looked like Gold. He had an exceptional minor league career and broke into the bigs well showing signs he could be the next big thing for the Indians. Obviously this has not happened but can he get it back on track? The negative on Sowers has always been he doesnt throw hard enough and the exceptional thing was his control and poise.

Can he get it back and give us a really good mor guy or is he just a AAAA kind of guy? I am not ready to give up on him but I can sure understand why some are. I am looking for opinions with some reasoning for the opinion.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby BothThePruittsMoves » Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:52 pm

Sowers is my pick to surprise us this year if he can get a chance in the rotation.

He struggled mightily in 2007 when his fastball was averaging just 85.4 MPH. In the offseason he bulked up a bit, but continued to struggle in 2008. Still, his fastball velocity increased a full 4 MPH to 89.7, above where he was in 2006 (88.5). Unfortunately he also added too much velocity to the changeup, so there was not enough separation between pitches. And he had big-time struggles with consistency.

So why do I think he could surprise us? Well first, because he is a smart and apparently motivated pitcher who studies what he needs to do to succeed. I think he'll successfully knock a little speed off the changeup while maintaining his fastball velocity, which could help immensely. I also think he'll find some of that ability to spot pitches and pinpoint control that has gone missing. His walk rate dropped by 30% post-all star break concomitant with a huge drop in batting average against, so that's a great sign. He also had a small handful of gems or partial gems in the second half, including a perfect game through 5 in August (he fell apart in the 7th) and a number of 1 or 2 run quality starts.

The issue with Jeremy, even still in the second half, was being consistent. I think he was figuring out what works for him, and how to be effective in the MAJORS - he certainly had no problem being effective against minor league batters. He's a heady guy with a good work ethic, so if his stuff is good enough, I think he'll figure it out. My guess is that in the long run he becomes a MOR starter who relies on spotting pitches, but has a decent career. I think I'm in the minority there though.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby dazindiansfanuk » Thu Jan 22, 2009 1:01 pm

BothThePruittsMoves wrote:Sowers is my pick to surprise us this year if he can get a chance in the rotation.

He struggled mightily in 2007 when his fastball was averaging just 85.4 MPH. In the offseason he bulked up a bit, but continued to struggle in 2008. Still, his fastball velocity increased a full 4 MPH to 89.7, above where he was in 2006 (88.5). Unfortunately he also added too much velocity to the changeup, so there was not enough separation between pitches. And he had big-time struggles with consistency.

So why do I think he could surprise us? Well first, because he is a smart and apparently motivated pitcher who studies what he needs to do to succeed. I think he'll successfully knock a little speed off the changeup while maintaining his fastball velocity, which could help immensely. I also think he'll find some of that ability to spot pitches and pinpoint control that has gone missing. His walk rate dropped by 30% post-all star break concomitant with a huge drop in batting average against, so that's a great sign. He also had a small handful of gems or partial gems in the second half, including a perfect game through 5 in August (he fell apart in the 7th) and a number of 1 or 2 run quality starts.

The issue with Jeremy, even still in the second half, was being consistent. I think he was figuring out what works for him, and how to be effective in the MAJORS - he certainly had no problem being effective against minor league batters. He's a heady guy with a good work ethic, so if his stuff is good enough, I think he'll figure it out. My guess is that in the long run he becomes a MOR starter who relies on spotting pitches, but has a decent career. I think I'm in the minority there though.


The problem with thinking that he's going to take a tick or two of his changeup is that Sowers and Carl Willis already know that he doesn't have enough seperation, but they still haven't been able to figure it out.

The easiest way is obviously hold the ball deeper in your palm when throwing the change, but apparantly (so I read) Sowers has girls hands (wasn't put that way in the article I read it mind you!) so as a result can't wrap his fingers around the ball enough to make the change-up as effective as it needs to be.

Personally, I don't see Sowers being in the organisation past 2009. I'm not a fan anyway, so can't say I'd be too dismayed if that was the case.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby TCBinaflash » Thu Jan 22, 2009 1:29 pm

dazindiansfanuk wrote:
BothThePruittsMoves wrote:Sowers is my pick to surprise us this year if he can get a chance in the rotation.

He struggled mightily in 2007 when his fastball was averaging just 85.4 MPH. In the offseason he bulked up a bit, but continued to struggle in 2008. Still, his fastball velocity increased a full 4 MPH to 89.7, above where he was in 2006 (88.5). Unfortunately he also added too much velocity to the changeup, so there was not enough separation between pitches. And he had big-time struggles with consistency.

So why do I think he could surprise us? Well first, because he is a smart and apparently motivated pitcher who studies what he needs to do to succeed. I think he'll successfully knock a little speed off the changeup while maintaining his fastball velocity, which could help immensely. I also think he'll find some of that ability to spot pitches and pinpoint control that has gone missing. His walk rate dropped by 30% post-all star break concomitant with a huge drop in batting average against, so that's a great sign. He also had a small handful of gems or partial gems in the second half, including a perfect game through 5 in August (he fell apart in the 7th) and a number of 1 or 2 run quality starts.

The issue with Jeremy, even still in the second half, was being consistent. I think he was figuring out what works for him, and how to be effective in the MAJORS - he certainly had no problem being effective against minor league batters. He's a heady guy with a good work ethic, so if his stuff is good enough, I think he'll figure it out. My guess is that in the long run he becomes a MOR starter who relies on spotting pitches, but has a decent career. I think I'm in the minority there though.


The problem with thinking that he's going to take a tick or two of his changeup is that Sowers and Carl Willis already know that he doesn't have enough seperation, but they still haven't been able to figure it out.

The easiest way is obviously hold the ball deeper in your palm when throwing the change, but apparantly (so I read) Sowers has girls hands (wasn't put that way in the article I read it mind you!) so as a result can't wrap his fingers around the ball enough to make the change-up as effective as it needs to be.

Personally, I don't see Sowers being in the organisation past 2009. I'm not a fan anyway, so can't say I'd be too dismayed if that was the case.


I agree with that summary.

Just like to add that Sowers is a really frustrating prospect because of the potential he shows with his pitch location. If he could give different "looks" by effectively changing his speeds he could really be effective.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby Chief24Wahoo » Thu Jan 22, 2009 1:54 pm

I've pretty much lost almost all of my hope with Sowers. He just doesn't get the job done at the major league level. However, I'm a big Aaron Laffey supporter. I'm really hoping he gets a chance this year to be fully in the rotation, I think he's got potential to be great...
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby jordan kramer » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:21 pm

i haven't pitched since sophomore year j.v. and i think i can throw harder than Sowers. he had one fluke little year get over him already...
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby Stu » Thu Jan 22, 2009 7:19 pm

jordan kramer wrote:i haven't pitched since sophomore year j.v. and i think i can throw harder than Sowers. he had one fluke little year get over him already...


man i was hoping we were done with these types of posts when Borowski was cut. :roll :roll:
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby bookelly » Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:34 pm

I still think he can be effective. Jamie Moyer has gotten by for many, many years with sub-par stuff coupled with excellent command. I look for Sowers to generate confusion with different arm slots, fastball velocities, and maybe the addition of a fourth (fifth?) pitch. He's smart and accurate enough to fool hitters twice through the line-up...it's the third and fourth time that scares me.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby davemanddd » Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:38 pm

dazindiansfanuk wrote:The problem with thinking that he's going to take a tick or two of his changeup is that Sowers and Carl Willis already know that he doesn't have enough seperation, but they still haven't been able to figure it out.

The easiest way is obviously hold the ball deeper in your palm when throwing the change, but apparantly (so I read) Sowers has girls hands (wasn't put that way in the article I read it mind you!) so as a result can't wrap his fingers around the ball enough to make the change-up as effective as it needs to be.

Personally, I don't see Sowers being in the organisation past 2009. I'm not a fan anyway, so can't say I'd be too dismayed if that was the case.


wow, giving up on a former # 1 pick so quickly??? especially one who had so much promise after his rookie year only to fall flat on his face the next season. ever heard of a "sophomore slump"???

if you ask me, sowers problem is the way the indians have handled him, just like all the other failed "can't miss" prospects before him like brandon phillips, andy marte, jeremy guthrie, brad snyder, et al.

the reason why boston's dustin pedroia was the mvp last season and the rookie of the year in 2007 was because he was allowed to play even through his struggles with a very long leash in which he was able to first fail, then figure out what went wrong, why it was wrong and what he needed to do to fix it and then once he figured it out, he had some success, was able to adjust and build upon his experience and he flourished as a result.

if you look at every single one of these guys with the indians, they were never allowed to play through their struggles, they were all on very short leashes and when they failed, the indians kept bouncing them back and forth between the bigs and the minors and so they never were able to figure out what their problems were or how to learn how to adjust to them and so they never achieved any real success or garnered the valuable experiences that come from that success like pedroia did.

i still hold out a belief, nay, a hope that sowers does figure it out and is able to become at least a middle-of-the-rotation starter for the indians. i like all the talk about comparing him to jamie moyer or tom glavine if given the right amount of grooming. the question is, do the indians have the right coaching staff in place with the patience and the know-how to help sowers realize his potential???

i would like to think that carl willis is a good pitching coach. after all, how many other pitching coaches have had 2 of their pitchers win back-to-back cy young awards??? leo mazzone when he was in atlanta is the only one that comes to my mind.

even still, does willis necessarily have all the answers??? i don't think there is anybody who has all the answers to any of life's questions. well, except for maybe steven hawking. that being said, would it kill him to seek out help from someone who used to pitch for the indians who enjoyed a certain level of success with the indians, namely doug jones???

i mean if sowers is having trouble getting seperation between his change-up and fastball, maybe he needs to learn how to better throw one from one of the absolute masters of the pitch and jones would certainly fill the bill.

now i have no idea what doug jones is doing these days or if he's even still involved in the game??? but if he is, i can't help but wonder why wouldn't the indians bring him out to arizona in spring training to teach their pitchers how to throw the change-up better??? i would think it would at least be worth a try.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby dazindiansfanuk » Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:14 am

davemanddd wrote:now i have no idea what doug jones is doing these days or if he's even still involved in the game??? but if he is, i can't help but wonder why wouldn't the indians bring him out to arizona in spring training to teach their pitchers how to throw the change-up better??? i would think it would at least be worth a try.


The problem isn't that Sowers/Willis etc don't know how to throw a better change-up, the problem is that he doesn't have the ability to do so.

Like i said, there were a number of articles last season stating that Sowers knew he needed more seperation from fastball to change-up, but he was finding it difficult to get more resistance on the ball with his change because his fingers aren't long enough.

I'm not writing Sowers off as a pitcher, but I do think his career as an Indian is coming to a close and that is more a matter of timing than what the Indians think of him. I'm pretty sure this is his final option year and unless he somehow makes great strides with his stuff then I don't think he sticks on a major league roster for the Indians when we have seemingly better options in 2010 and beyond.

If you think the Indians have mishandled him then I don't know what to tell you.... he pitched great in the tail end of 2006, they gave him a rotation spot in 2007 and he stunk, then they gave him another shot in 2008 and he stunk.... what else could the Indians have done? Unless of course you're simply using Sowers as another excuse to bring up Guthrie/Phillips etc (which it seems to me you are).
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby dazindiansfanuk » Fri Jan 23, 2009 8:19 am

davemanddd wrote:the reason why boston's dustin pedroia was the mvp last season and the rookie of the year in 2007 was because he was allowed to play even through his struggles with a very long leash in which he was able to first fail, then figure out what went wrong, why it was wrong and what he needed to do to fix it and then once he figured it out, he had some success, was able to adjust and build upon his experience and he flourished as a result.


Are you actually comparing Pedroia to Sowers?

Never let the facts get in the way of a good arguement I suppose! Pedroia had 55 poor at bats in April of his rookie year and there was talk of sending him down, but he then hit over .400 in may and hit over .300 every month for the rest of the season.

Meanwhile, Sowers took the ball every 5th day in his poor 2007 season until the middle of June (12 starts) and at no time did he show signs of turning things around. The Indians then gave him 22 starts in 2008 (was in the rotation for the final 4 months of the season) and he still didn't perform.

Now, if you believe that the Red Sox tolerating 55 poor April ABs is giving Pedroia a longer leash than the Indians gave Sowers by leaving him in the rotation for 2 1/2 months followed by giving him another 22 starts in 2008 then I don't really know what to say.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby aldamon » Fri Jan 23, 2009 9:16 am

davemanddd wrote:the reason why boston's dustin pedroia was the mvp last season and the rookie of the year in 2007 was because he was allowed to play even through his struggles with a very long leash in which he was able to first fail, then figure out what went wrong, why it was wrong and what he needed to do to fix it and then once he figured it out, he had some success, was able to adjust and build upon his experience and he flourished as a result.


So when is Marte going to collect his MVP award? He had a leash the length of Ohio.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby WiscTribeFan » Fri Jan 23, 2009 9:36 am

if you ask me, sowers problem is the way the indians have handled him, just like all the other failed "can't miss" prospects before him like brandon phillips, andy marte, jeremy guthrie, brad snyder, et al.


This list gets longer with each post you make. Brad Synder?

I was pretty disappointed that you didn't work a 'Eric "the genius" Wedge' into that post. Something to work on.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby leadpipe » Fri Jan 23, 2009 9:37 am

For the thousandth time...

Many prospect honks on here are aware a young player needs a chance, yet seemingly oblivious to the fact that this is Major League Baseball, therefore you need to do your part in earning your time as well. Huge, huge prospects are handed time, the rest have to prove they belong ON EVERY TEAM.

If you wanna say that the Tribe is a bit tardy bringing some guys up in the past fine, if you wanna say that you'd prefer they give less time to vets and more to younger players, that's fine as well.

Just understand that saying the guys like Sowers and Marte have been "ruined" by the way they were handled..... Christ, this isn't Forest Park Middle School JV. This isn't an American Legion team that Andy Marte's Dad is bank rolling. Get some hits, get some guys out LIKE EVERYONE ELSE THAT HAS EARNED AND KEPT A MAJOR LEAGUE JOB, and you'll be fine.

By the way, Sowers - and his stuff. Simple, classic case. The book is out after the first or so go around. Now that every team has that book, it's on you. This is the reason guys with similiar pedestrian stuff are a rare find as far as being an effective pitcher than guys with excellent stuff. You will look thru a thousand Sowers' to find Jamie Moyer, you'll look thru substantially less big arms to find a solid pitcher.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby CDAV6 » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:54 pm

I am giving my opinion for conversation sake only. I think Sowers problem is his lack of a pitch that resembles his fastball. For example, Raffy Left throws a "hard" slider that looks like his fastball out of his hand but breaks late. Raffy doesn't throw significantly harder(if at all) than Sowers and certainly doesn't have Sowers' control. What he has is deception and that in my opinion is what Sowers lacks. If and it is a big if, Sowers can develop another pitch(slider, split, 2seam, or whatever) he will regain his effectiveness and possibly improve on his past success. If he doesn't, he will probably be forgotten in a short period of time. Guys like Laffey with his filthy split will continue to pass him. I also believe Sowers can be too analytical on the mound. This game has its advantages for being intelligent, but you must be able to perform physically, and sometimes too much of one takes away from the other. My point to Sowers would be think harder about the pitch you are throwing instead of what the hitter is thinking. Develop pitches you can believe in and the rest will take care of itself.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby slegend » Sat Jan 24, 2009 9:28 am

IMO w/Sowers:

1: He falls into that category of being a "smart pitcher" - I talked with a fan of Sowers and noted that he studies video of both the hitters he will face and watches how some of the pitchers approach the game's elite players. You will see him alter the time between pitches - slowing his delivery, speeding it - to add a little challenge to the hitters. PROBLEM: It has caused his mechanics to suffer and he lost his control.

2: When you throw a 88-90 MPH fastball and a mid 80s slider - you are not going to last at the MLB level. Sowers - for whatever the reason - does not throw the change enough. He USED to toss it a ton in the minors - prior to his original callup to the MLB level. Now, he has become a fastball-slider pitcher and you cannot enjoy much success with two pitches and a weak arm.

3: My recommendation would be to have Sowers either throw the change more or develop a split finger fastball. If he can located and control his fastball and slider - he might get hitters to swing at a split that drops out of the zone - giving Sowers 2-3 more Ks per game. That would keep some wood off the bats.

4: Sowers - like many of our pitchers - can pitch with runners off the bases... But, when you put a runner on a bag and change the deliver - his stuff is night and day more pathetic... Not sure how to address this with a guy like Sowers - who has no control or placement on pitches when he shortens the deliver...

In the end, Sowers probably would be a #5 starter on a decent team, maybe a #4 on a team headed for an annual .400 winning percentage. We need better than this guy...
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby OSU819903 » Sat Jan 24, 2009 1:54 pm

I have been holding out an opinion on Sowers just because I have had so many about him over the years. When he first came up, I was thinking "sweet, can't miss lefty that already knows how to pitch". Then 2007 came, I was personally very patient hoping we would see the guy from 06. I even remember one of the 'home' games in Mil, where he looked good for 4 innings and then it fell apart (I believe it was the game Pronk won with a walk-off).

So he gets sent down, kinda plays the shuttle game the last two years with extremely mixed results. Are you going to get the guy who was throwing 4-6 inning perfect games last year like it was nothing. Or are we going to get the guy who can't battle through any jams, like the Sower's we've seen the most of...

IMO, this is going to come down to Laffey and Huff to a less likely degree. From what I've seen of Sower's and Laffey, it is Laffey's spot to loose. I think if all things are equal Aaron gets the 5th spot over Jeremy. And if Huff just impresses the living shit out of everyone, I think he'll get it. Shapiro all but said so on Triv last fall. He must have mentioned Huff ten times telling everyone not to forget that name and that he is in the running for this team.

Am I the only person here that thinks, barring injury, that there is only one spot up for grabs in the rotation. There's been a lot of talk that the rotation is wide open, but barring injury we know it's going to be Lee, Carmona, Pavano, Reyes and ???. So if those 4 make it through ST injury free, the lefties are really only fighting for one spot.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby jameseboy » Sat Jan 24, 2009 2:07 pm

I think if both Pavano and Reyes pitch well all year you can buy our playoff tickets now..I also think the chance of it happening is no greater than 10%. Reyes has never done it and Pavano has not done it in several years.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby OSU819903 » Sat Jan 24, 2009 2:13 pm

I didn't necessarily say all year, I was speaking strictly out of ST. If Reyes and Pavano are healthy, no matter how bad they look, they will be in the rotation to start the year.


Edit: I guess Reyes could look bad enough not to make it, but man it would have to be bad.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby ramllov » Sat Jan 24, 2009 3:05 pm

If I remember right, Sowers went through the American league once an was successful.

I don't know how well he did his second time around, but, either they figured him out, or he lost his confidence.

He is an option to be a starter, with a group of other pitchers to be the fourth or fifth pitchers in the rotation.

He has to show something this spring training and early spring if he make the 25 man roster and the starting rotation.
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby Erie Warrior » Sun Jan 25, 2009 10:40 am

dazindiansfanuk wrote:The problem with thinking that he's going to take a tick or two of his changeup is that Sowers and Carl Willis already know that he doesn't have enough seperation, but they still haven't been able to figure it out.

The easiest way is obviously hold the ball deeper in your palm when throwing the change, but apparantly (so I read) Sowers has girls hands (wasn't put that way in the article I read it mind you!) so as a result can't wrap his fingers around the ball enough to make the change-up as effective as it needs to be.

Personally, I don't see Sowers being in the organisation past 2009. I'm not a fan anyway, so can't say I'd be too dismayed if that was the case.


Time to break out the old 3 finger change. Then he'll have to squeeze his thumb and index finger, instead of the circle, to get it to move (which it doesn't do that well when held like that). I do the same thing with kids who haven't hit puberty yet. HA!
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Re: Sowers

Unread postby jordan kramer » Sun Jan 25, 2009 3:26 pm

Erie Warrior wrote:
dazindiansfanuk wrote:The problem with thinking that he's going to take a tick or two of his changeup is that Sowers and Carl Willis already know that he doesn't have enough seperation, but they still haven't been able to figure it out.

The easiest way is obviously hold the ball deeper in your palm when throwing the change, but apparantly (so I read) Sowers has girls hands (wasn't put that way in the article I read it mind you!) so as a result can't wrap his fingers around the ball enough to make the change-up as effective as it needs to be.

Personally, I don't see Sowers being in the organisation past 2009. I'm not a fan anyway, so can't say I'd be too dismayed if that was the case.


Time to break out the old 3 finger change. Then he'll have to squeeze his thumb and index finger, instead of the circle, to get it to move (which it doesn't do that well when held like that). I do the same thing with kids who haven't hit puberty yet. HA!

i don't players with girls hands on my team! so unless his balls drop and hands grow in spring training i say we dump him
"i've been gettin G-ed up since i came out the hospital as a baby. i didn't wear pampers, i wore some slacks and some gators on the way home."
"in order for us to grow u gotta know, in order to love the brotherman, u gotta know the otherman. because one fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish. knick knack paddy wack, give the dog a bone." - Delonte West

"i'm going to pull your endocrine system out of your body" - Gary Busey
Cerebral_DownTime wrote:Who cares about this crap?

WE GOT A MUTHA FUCKIN EARTHQUAKE MACHINE!
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jordan kramer
 
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Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 10:24 pm
Location: "the brooklyn of youngstown"
Favorite Player: brown eyed girls
Least Favorite Player: my girlfriend


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