Matsuzaka Day Continues

For what it’s worth, Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus spoke to a scout who was at the Matsuzaka spring training game yesterday. Goldstein reports:

To the scout, he looked like a No. 2 or 3 starter for now, as he didn’t
see that one dominating 70+ offering one normally sees in top-level
starter, but again, it’s early.

Indeed it’s early. As a Yanks fan who basically believes that this guy is the real deal, if only because so many people think so, I’m going with the idea that no pitcher shows 70+ stuff in his first spring training outing. But maybe, pitchers such as Johan Santana can’t help but show their dominant stuff even during a poor outing. Scouting is a truly interesting art/science (what would you call it?) and one profession that I’ve been thinking about a lot of late. What makes a good scout good? Who are the best scouts in the game? These are questions that are hard to answer and probably show just how naive I am on the subject. I wonder if there’s a decent book about scouting. Anyone know?

15 comments… add one
  • This could be looked at both ways. “Only a 2/3 starter” or “already a 2/3 starter, 3 innings into his ML spring training career”.
    I have no clue which it is.

    SF March 7, 2007, 6:54 pm
  • Only thing I don’t understand is how his control could only be average, given that he threw 2/3 of his pitches for strikes. I suppose that could mean he kept missing in the strike zone? Lots of swings and misses? Just a little confused.

    desturbd1 March 7, 2007, 7:03 pm
  • Ask Josh Beckett about missing in the strike zone, d1. All strikes are not created equal.

    SF March 7, 2007, 7:07 pm
  • I know, and I suppose the Fish could have been up there swinging at everything. Just seems a little strange they couldn’t manage more than the two hits.

    desturbd1 March 7, 2007, 7:14 pm
  • Yikes, Andy Pettitte was almost decapitated by a jagged piece of broken bat that came boomeranging back at him in the 1st inning down in Tampa against the Reds. Seems to be OK as it looks to have just nicked his hand.
    Meanwhile, Roger what’s his name is sitting next to the Yanks dugout with son Koby.

    Whatever March 7, 2007, 7:25 pm
  • Roger just did an entire half-inning interview with the Yankee announcers. Sounds like he doesn’t really want to come back. But some comments tell me that if he does, it’ll probably be the Yankees, there are just a lot more former teammates there, plus there’s the nearest thing to guaranteed run production you can get, another thing he mentioned he was frustrated with, with Houston. Also, I think rumor has it is he really despises Curt Schilling.

    Andrew March 7, 2007, 8:46 pm
  • Speaking of scouting, here are some clips of Matsuzaka against the Marlins yesterday:

    Devil Rays' Fan March 7, 2007, 8:52 pm
  • Uggla said he thought he would get hit by the first Matsuzaka pitch, but it broke over the plate for a strike.
    ”When your curveball doesn’t break until it hits the dirt area, that’s when you know you’ve got good stuff,” Uggla said.
    Later, Uggla said matter-of-factly, “He’ll be a dominating pitcher.

    Scout or darn good (though young) major leaguer? Who has more cred?

    SF March 7, 2007, 8:59 pm
  • You guys see Schilling’s new blog? They’ve got it on deadspin.

    walein March 7, 2007, 9:30 pm
  • Santana wasn’t his usual dominant self in his first ST start against Boston.
    It takes a while to get a feel for pitching (especially breaking stuff) and to maximize arm strength. I’d say to “look like a #2 or #3” at this point in time is pretty encouraging.
    I’d say it’s also pretty good to see Papelbon dominating with a 92-93mph fastball. We know he can get a little more on it than that. Judging from his start, his curve isn’t quite as nasty as Beckett’s, but it’s far better than Schilling’s.

    Steve March 7, 2007, 9:34 pm
  • “Scout or darn good (though young) major leaguer? Who has more cred?”
    You might have meant this rhetorically, but I think it’s an interesting question. I’d assume the advantage goes to a scout since most of his job is about projecting a player’s future, but who knows.

    Nick-YF March 7, 2007, 10:09 pm
  • I’d have to agree with Nick. The Scout has it over the soon to be 27 year old (we share a birthday), 1 year of Major League experience, Dan Uggla.

    walein March 8, 2007, 12:24 am
  • It also may say something more about Dan Uggla’s inability to hit the curve ball.

    walein March 8, 2007, 12:24 am
  • …the scout doesn’t have to actually try to hit the ball, my money is on the player who does…

    dc March 8, 2007, 7:47 am
  • No, it was a serious question, not a rhetorical one.

    SF March 8, 2007, 8:13 am

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