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Thread: Who are the flame throwers?

  1. #1
    Member icehole3's Avatar
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    Who are the flame throwers?

    Are there many guys in the system considered as flamethrowers, Im talking high 90s?

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    Vampire Weekend @Bernie's camisadelgolf's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    A few guys that spruing to mind immediately:
    Scott Gaffney
    Jeff Jeffords
    Junior Martinez

  4. #3
    Member icehole3's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    A ballers?

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    Member OnBaseMachine's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Ondrusek can touch 97, IIRC.

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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Junior Martinez is the hardest thrower in the organization. To say he has a long way to go as a prospect would be putting it mildly. Philippe Valiquette throws hard. Andrew Bowman would be near the top but is not as consistent with his velocity. Curtis Partch is in that same mold. Josh Ravin would rank in the top group. Terrell Young (pre-injury).

    Yes, they are mostly A-ballers and generally the guys in that group have not had a lot of success. That tells you a couple of things. One, if a guy has a plus fastball, he will get second and third chances in A-ball to figure it out, even if he is not pitching effectively. Secondly, once he gets higher than A-ball, if all he has is velocity, he will get pummeled. Therefore, you see many of those kind of raw throwers in A-ball and the majority don't make it, but the hope is that if a pitching coach can have some success with one of those kind of guys, then you have a prospect with a plus tool.

    You said high 90s. The only guys in the organization that I have personally seen in the high 90s in 2008-09 were Martinez and Zach Stewart, although I have not seen Ondrusek.

    Also, I will differentiate a bit between hardest thrower and best fastball. Hardest thrower, to me, means highest radar gun reading. Best fastball takes into account movement and command and is much more important.

    Three best fastballs in the farm system over the last 15 years (in no particular order): Homer Bailey, Johnny Cueto, Zach Stewart.
    Last edited by redsof72; 01-08-2010 at 11:08 AM.

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    BobC, get a legit F.O.! Mario-Rijo's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by OnBaseMachine View Post
    Ondrusek can touch 97, IIRC.
    I don't believe he does OBM, not positive but I was under the impression he doesn't get much velocity. I'm pretty sure he reaches 94 (sits 91-92) but don't know of him going over that. In addition I believe he throws a 81-82 MPH change, a slider and cutter both in the 87-91 neighborhood.
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Ondrusek does, if the gun at Louisville can be believed. He hit 97 regularly, though it did look flat at times.
    Last edited by Scrap Irony; 01-08-2010 at 03:57 PM.
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    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario-Rijo View Post
    I don't believe he does OBM, not positive but I was under the impression he doesn't get much velocity. I'm pretty sure he reaches 94 (sits 91-92) but don't know of him going over that. In addition I believe he throws a 81-82 MPH change, a slider and cutter both in the 87-91 neighborhood.
    Ondrusek can 100% throw 97 MPH. I have seen it on guns multiple time and Pitch FX from the AFL also had him hitting 97.

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    BobC, get a legit F.O.! Mario-Rijo's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrap Irony View Post
    Ondrusek does, if the gun at Louisville can be believed. He hit 97 regularly, though it did look flat at times.

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Ondrusek can 100% throw 97 MPH. I have seen it on guns multiple time and Pitch FX from the AFL also had him hitting 97.

    I stand corrected then, Doug do you agee with Scrap about the flatness of the pitch?

    I should pose this question however, how does guy who throws that hard only post below average K/9 numbers in the minors? Or instead of asking that how does Logan Ondrusek manage to do this as I know how it happens to most.
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario-Rijo View Post
    I stand corrected then, Doug do you agee with Scrap about the flatness of the pitch?

    I should pose this question however, how does guy who throws that hard only post below average K/9 numbers in the minors? Or instead of asking that how does Logan Ondrusek manage to do this as I know how it happens to most.
    Ondrusek struck out 17% of the hitters he faced this year. That isn't really below average. Its not elite either of course. The main thing to me though is that Ondrusek is very reliant on his fastball/cutter. He threw offspeed pitches less than 10% of the time while he was in the AFL.

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    Member mdccclxix's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Boxberger? Upper 90's in short stints right?

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    BobC, get a legit F.O.! Mario-Rijo's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Ondrusek struck out 17% of the hitters he faced this year. That isn't really below average. Its not elite either of course. The main thing to me though is that Ondrusek is very reliant on his fastball/cutter. He threw offspeed pitches less than 10% of the time while he was in the AFL.
    Well I should have said projects to have a below average k/9 in the pros as he currently stands. There is always the possibility of him improving some aspect but without will he K enough since he is a pitch to contact type of guy.
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario-Rijo View Post
    Well I should have said projects to have a below average k/9 in the pros as he currently stands. There is always the possibility of him improving some aspect but without will he K enough since he is a pitch to contact type of guy.
    It depends. Is his cutter actually a good cutter? No starter in the major leagues in 2008 that threw a cutter with at any rate considered to be normal had it be even an average pitch. Everyone that threw it, threw it with above average results. Its the best pitch in baseball when you throw it right. Ondrusek picked it up this year and far and away had his best year. So despite being a 'contact' type pitcher, we know that the cutter has been generating different results than other pitches on average in a very good way. As a guy who was a big groundball pitcher this year (and in the past actually) I think that there is a solid chance he can still be a good reliever even if his K rate dips some at the MLB level as long as his walk rates are in the 7-8% range.

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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by mdccclxix View Post
    Boxberger? Upper 90's in short stints right?
    I think I read that somewhere, too. Problem was his longevity, IIRC.
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    BobC, get a legit F.O.! Mario-Rijo's Avatar
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    Re: Who are the flame throwers?

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    It depends. Is his cutter actually a good cutter? No starter in the major leagues in 2008 that threw a cutter with at any rate considered to be normal had it be even an average pitch. Everyone that threw it, threw it with above average results. Its the best pitch in baseball when you throw it right. Ondrusek picked it up this year and far and away had his best year. So despite being a 'contact' type pitcher, we know that the cutter has been generating different results than other pitches on average in a very good way. As a guy who was a big groundball pitcher this year (and in the past actually) I think that there is a solid chance he can still be a good reliever even if his K rate dips some at the MLB level as long as his walk rates are in the 7-8% range.
    Thanks for the explanation, good stuff there.
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