From Rob Bradford’s blog (which you need to be reading every day):
But the final line was inconsequential compared to the nine change-ups which made an appearance in the outing. For Schilling, spring training [last year] was all about pitching inside, this year the priority has become developing his change. …
"I’m forcing myself to throw it in counts where I would during the season if it was good," Schilling said. "The first couple I threw today, it felt like I was throwing left-handed, because I have a mental checklist that I rapid-fire to throw each pitch, and I’ve never thrown this — or really felt this confident or comfortable to this point to use it — so it’s different. The last couple I threw, I thought I threw really, really well. It’s going to be a huge weapon for me."
Last year, Schilling talked a lot about pitching inside and hitting batters if necessary to reclaim the strike zone. Yet he hit just as many batters as he did in 2005 (three), and the same as his 162-game career average. Does the Sox ace plan on unveiling a new pitch at age 40 and using it effectively to become the 22-game winner he believes he still can be? I’m skeptical, but in the end, it doesn’t really matter. Schilling is a master at self-publicity and the media — witness his handing out Japanese-language T-shirts for his video game company to the Japanese media in Fort Myers. If he gets hitters thinking he has another dominating pitch — even if he rarely uses it — it’s still an advantage.