Mariners Analysis

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Seen this from Washburn before

A couple of years ago, Washburn had a nice stretch where he was quite effective. I watched him pitch and was amazed how well he painted the corners and just didn't give batters much to hit in the middle of the plate.

I wrote on this blog how he really looked like a good pitcher.

I was wrong.

What I realized later is command is a fickle mistress. Just like the golfer who gets in a groove, Washburn is hitting every fairway and green and making it look easy. But the problem is all golfers, even Tiger Woods, have to hit from the cart path. Tiger can win majors even when his command is off, as he has the talent and experience to hit shots the rest of us could only dream of.

Washburn will have nights this season where his command is missing. He'll have nothing to fall back on, as he doesn't have the stuff to make up for it.

All pitchers have nights where they can't locate their pitches. If Felix can't spot his fastball, he still has an effective change-up. slider and curve to work with. If Washburn doesn't have pinpoint command, he has nothing. And once you have command problems, it gets in your head and good luck getting it back.

I'm happy Wasbburn is in a groove. I hope it continues for as long as possiblem. But don't think for a second he's become the new Jamie Moyer. His command will leave, sooner then you think. And the old Wash will return.