Skip to content

AAA vs. Louisville

March 18, 2007

Typing this on the plane as we head back to Boston.  Going to spend the off day with Shonda and the kids and get some things done at 38 Studios as well.

The game today went well. 6 innings, 98 pitches, 74 strikes and I felt stronger in the 6th than I did in the 1st.

The Reds AAA team was in Fort Myers and the guy they started against the Pawtucket club I learned was one of the players in the deal made between Boston and Cincy for Scott Williamson. Left handed starter with a real nice arm and a good feel for pitching from what I got to see. He threw extremely well over his three innings, surrendering one hit I think.

Tek hit every inning and had a single and a long double to deep center in his first four at bats. He looks fantastic and he’s moving better than I’ve seen him in the past 2 years. There’s something to be said for being healthy.

 

The leadoff hitter worked a full count and took a called third strike, fastball, on the outer half. The second hitter struck out on a 0-2 split and the third hitter went down on a 0-2 high fastball that Tek had intentionally wanted to throw up in the zone. I had decent life in the first and my split has finally begun to show itself, good signs. Fastball command was erratic from the get go today and overall it was the only thing I was unhappy with during the 6 innings.

 

Three up three down second inning that featured a swinging strike three on a full count changeup. First time I’ve ever thrown the pitch in that count to positive results. The change over the past three games has been immense from a mental perspective. The change up no longer feels like a pitch I need to think through, to throw. Today it was just another pitch I had, and used. I did throw some bad ones but today’s bad ones were self-inflicted mistakes.

 

Third inning was four up three down. The first hit of the game came on a 1-1 back door slider that never got near the back door. One of the mistakes I made all too often last year was lowering my arm slot and dragging my arm into the throw when I was throwing this pitch. What it did more times than not was because the slider to flatten out and ‘cut’ instead of break, right into the middle of the plate.

 

A cut moves horizontally, a break moves horizontally and vertically. The ball that cuts coming in back door to a lefty cuts to the barrel of the bat if you aren’t precise, and that’s a bad thing. It’s a pitch I could almost guarantee hitting my spots with in the past, but over the last two years not so much. So the lefty hits the back door ‘cutter’, and the next two guys go down. Fastball command isn’t changing by this time and I’m aware that what I can’t start doing is over throwing, to compensate for missing spots. It’s a mistake I’ve made for 21 years, but something I do less now than I used to. One of the hardest things to ‘unlearn’ as a young power pitcher is overthrowing. Young power pitchers, more times than not, get out of trouble facing hitters in high school and college, and the minor leagues, by throwing harder. If you throw 98mph that will work in the big leagues as well, just not as often.

 

To ‘overthrow’ or get more on the ball you have to ‘reach back’ (which is really the exact opposite of what you physically do since you gain velocity with extension and reach forward), which, when you do, causes you to lose command of the ball. Best way to compare it for those that understand golf is this. If you are a decent golfer you could sit on the range and hit your 7 iron however far you can hit it, pretty consistently. Now take a huge swing at the ball. Nine times out of ten the shot goes so far from where you intend it to because you’ve used an entirely different swing and swing path to exert that much more effort. Same thing with overthrowing, it’s just not as visible as it might be in a golf swing. There are two real tell tale signs of overthrowing. The first is an erratic finish to the delivery where the pitcher falls off fast and hard to his throwing side. The second is the guy that ‘stiff legs’ the throw, literally throwing against his front side and recoiling. The first is pretty normal, the second is not only less normal but incredibly bad for the shoulder. It’s one of the things that has made Glavine and Maddux Hall of Famers. Watch their deliveries. They both, most times, will finish in complete control of their bodies and in the perfect fielding position. It’s just one more reason Maddux has won 104 Gold Gloves.

 

Fourth inning sees me give up a run. A pretty good sized kid puts a real good swing on a 2-0 fastball that’s up on the outer half, and drives it over the wall in left for an opposite field home run. I’ll claim the wind helped, but he hit the ball a ton. I give up a double to right center on another high fastball as well. I felt bad for the defenders today because it was a real high sky and fly balls, when combining the high sky with the bad wind, were a circus. Last out of the inning is a hard ground ball to 2nd.

 

The last two innings go by, one more hit, but I threw a few real good changes. Got two more outs on it, both on behind in the count change ups. My split wasn’t consistent, but it certainly was better. Slider was good and bad and the change up, of which I threw 19 today, got better. Outing ends on 98 pitches as the final hitter swings through a 2-2 fastball.

 

Velocity was 90-92 for most of the day. Hit 94 on two different pitches in the 6th. Glad to see  that I was that strong 90+ pitches into the outing. Strength wise I feel phenomenal at this point, much better than I’d thought I would. While I did throw 98 pitches I wasn’t remotely tired at the end and that’s not been the case over the last 24 months. It’s starting to feel much more like 2004 than it does 2007 from a durability standpoint. I’ve definitely got more life on everything this spring than last and my legs feel as good as they have since spring 2004.

 

Next start will be Friday in Ft Myers vs. Baltimore. The plan is to get the pitch count north of 100 pitches, finish the work on the spring training projects, and then go into the start on the 28th and use it as a ‘tune up’ for KC on opening day.

122 Comments leave one →
  1. bigpapi3419 permalink
    March 20, 2007 10:11 pm

    Schilling,
    Do you think the redsox have gone back to there old ways of 25 men 25 taxi’s? It seem’s since we let Johnny Damon, Kevin Millar, Mark Bellhorn and Ocab go that the good chemistry in the clubhouse is gone do u feel like that? It seems like Theo bring’s in a whole bunch of new players every year and never has one team stick together to mesh. And what our your thoughts on Julio Lugo, i watched him alot with the devil rays and it seems he has a very erratic throwing motion and maybe thats why he has so many errors. And Mr. Schilling i would never boo you like everyone did Keith Foulke and Mark Belhorn they may have fell apart after the world series but the important thing was how great they played during the playoffs. And you def. gave your blood and you pitched your heart out in those playoff game and thank you for making the world series finally come back where it belongs.
    Good luck this year I will def. be rooting for you.

  2. acefox1 permalink
    March 20, 2007 11:17 pm

    Anybody want to start a pool on how long it takes for our resident critic/whiney-weasel to stop posting if everybody here ignores the BS he is spewing?

    I am tempted to put up a post on the difference between to, too and two or your and you’re. Nevermind, maybe we can ask the presidend for help with that.

    Yeah that post was right on the money about Curt crashing those Congressional hearings on steroids. How dare he invite himself to testify. What a selfish attention-grubber. I’m sure the invitation from the Congressional Commitee had nothing to do with it. I think that’s called a subpoena isn’t it? Naw, he’s right, Curt should have just ignored Congress and blown off the hearings. (For the humor impaired, tongue is planted firmly in cheek here. “I say I say that’s a joke son, don’tcha get it??? That boy’s about as sharp as a bowlin’ ball…”)

    I loved that question about how and why Curt was able to thrive and finish runner-up for the Cy Young when switching from the NL to the AL but most other pitchers have a tough time adjusting. I know pitching to a DH 3-4 times per game instead of a pitcher is a significant factor plus having a new batch of very dangerous hitters to deal with and fewer spacious West Coast style parks. Just curious as to what else comes into play there.

    I also have to give major kudos on the description of what the main symptoms and causes are for a pitcher that is over-throwing the ball. Absolutely first-rate writing Curt. Someone at the AP or ESPN or SI should get you media credentials and pay you to be a columnist. :) I bet the lazier folks in the press would go nuts seeing you show them up in addition to cutting out the middle man.

    Seriously, your writing is far better than most of the columnists I read that are still beating the dead horse of a story that is “David Eckstien, diminutive baseball giant” LOL You do a better job of writing than they do and you make it look easy. You are the man Curt Schilling!

    Regardless of what your position is on the H.O.F. you are the pitcher I would want on the mound for a Game 7, do-or-die, must-win situation.

    You definitely fit the bill as a pitcher that always delivers the goods and on the rare instances where you aren’t the game winner, we genuinely are shocked. You are the definition of an ace sir. Keep that fire inside you burning, keep leading, keep teaching and keep pushing. You are an inspiration to Millions!

    Your biggest fan!

    Deane

  3. tommy2tymes permalink
    March 21, 2007 1:39 am

    Hey Curt,

    Love the blog, just curious, in one of your Q&A’s you posted a “All Star lineup” of your choosing. I’m curious as to who you would name to your “All Star Bull Pen”. either past or current. Who would you want to give the ball to in the 7th, 8th and 9th? Who would be your lefty specialist? etc.

    Keep up the good work and good luck this upcoming season,

    Tom, aka a Blue Jays fan

  4. fgiles83 permalink
    March 21, 2007 7:18 am

    Curt,
    Just wondering what song or songs you like to hear as you come to the mound in the first inning to get you pumped? I know i heard Mussina come out to The Who’s “Won’t be fooled again” once and i got pretty pumped. Thanks for your work with ALS.

    Thanks
    Frank

  5. jdh2511 permalink
    March 21, 2007 7:34 am

    Big Schill,

    I’m trying to cram for a Philosophy midterm I have tomorrow and your blog just threw me behind another hour! You’re my boy and all, but reading all this fan mail must get pretty corny quick. Well, seing as how your balls are probabaly the most thouroughly washed things on the planet, I don’t need to join in, so I’ll mix it up:

    4 rounds of Ali or 4 quarters of Butkus? Zeppelin or Floyd?

    Who partied harder, Millar or Damon?

    Take it easy and paint those corners.

    Hogan

  6. trot7 permalink
    March 21, 2007 7:42 am

    I’m a little worried about the pressure put on Pedroia. Even though you only really expect good D and a DP partner for Lugo out of him, I’m afraid his early struggles at the plate could have long term effects on his development. I think he could have used another year of platooning before stepping into the starting 2nd baseman spot for the Boston Red Sox. Thoughts?

  7. March 21, 2007 8:23 am

    it sounds like a solid pitch plan and also sounds like you and the vast majority of the pitching staff will be ready to rock and roll for opening day… last year was a freak incident… no way could anyone predict any of last years stuff happening all at once… so have a good season!

    andy

  8. acefox1 permalink
    March 21, 2007 8:46 am

    I don’t want you to feel like I’m asking you to be Daisuke’s spokesmen, but reading Verducci’s article about the virtually unprecedented number of innings he has thrown at his age made me think of what you mentioned in terms of Innings Pitched being the most important Stat for a pitcher and that the other numbers take care of themselves if you have lots of innings pitched.

    I don’t think it’s possible to say anything has been missed in the coverage of Daisuke, but do you think there is too much attention paid to the mythology of the Gyrboball and not enough attention paid to the unbelievable numbers of innings and pitch counts that he has under his belt?

    Based on your evaluation of the importance of innings pitched, his reported command of so many pitches, what I’ve heard Tek say and his confidence and poise as a pitcher, I think he is going to exceed all expectations this year, and that’s saying something.

    If you consider the numbers that Verducci references:

    “…reflect on the 250 pitches he threw in a 17-inning complete game in high school — the apex of a stretch in which he threw 54 innings in 11 days — and the 189 pitches he threw on Opening Day in 2003, the 160 pitches in his second start of the ’05 season, the 145 pitches in his penultimate start for the Lions, the 588 innings he threw for Seibu before he turned 21 (Oakland ace Rich Harden, 25, still hasn’t logged that many big league innings) and the eight games last year in which he threw at least 130 pitches — more such games than all major league pitchers combined.”

    At the risk of asking you to gush about having this guy on your team, I’d love to hear any other insights you have on what it’s like seeing him work in person. I know you’ve said that he gets more impressive each time you see him. I’m just curious to know if his command with so many pitches is going to leave hitters totally off-balance and if his hesitation delivery is a big weapon in deceiving hitters.

    I’m also curious as to what it is like seeing him throw an hour of 300 foot long-toss or 100 ST pitches and never ice his arm or shoulder. That must be truly mind-blowing for someone with your experience to see. Any concerns on him not icing or is it just pure amazement and joy?

    Thanks in advance Curt!

    Deane

  9. scambodian permalink
    March 21, 2007 8:54 am

    Your such a tool Deane. You really think Curt didnt want to be at those hearings? Have you ever seen Curt Schilling do anything less than 300 interviews a year? he loves the camera (possibly even more thean Millar) there was no way he did not want to be at Congressional Hill. Same reason he was with George Bush during the election year in 04. The only reason he has this blog is because He finally has a site that is 100% about Curt Schilling. and people like you Deane eat it up, maybe Curt will let you rub his feet one day or feed him grapes.

    Im surprised the address for this site isnt CurtSchilling_loves_CurtSchilling.net

    get a grip Deane.

  10. fanofschill permalink
    March 21, 2007 9:22 am

    HI Curt quick question for your Q & A …how important is a players number to them.? I ask because you have this site and company with the #38 playing a role. Per chance you left for another team and #38 wasn’t an option, what happens then? Would you change your company name? Would you try to purchase the #38 from said player? How much and what does it mean to you?

    Also, is there a reason you are #38? I know not a typical basebal question but with this medium be presented to us i thought asking a quirky question might be prevalent.

  11. justin5 permalink
    March 21, 2007 9:54 am

    Curt,

    Thanks for the candid posts and Q & A answers. I really enjoy your stuff. Keep up the good work.

    Question for you: How do you think the bullpen situation is going to look once the dust settles and you head north? If you were in Tito’s shoes, who are you calling in to close the door in the 9th?

  12. acefox1 permalink
    March 21, 2007 10:51 am

    Ahhh thanks. Nothing could make me happier than a vicious, sniping whiner saying he has a negative opinion of me. That means I must be doing something right.

    And to see that person saying that Curt just wants attention … hang on a sec, the phone is ringing… Hello? Um yes, just a minute let me give him the message…. Is there a pot here? The kettle says you are black.

    Who could possibly be crying for attention more than someone trolling the blog of someone they don’t like and wasting their energy to say how terrible they are over and over again. What a small and fragile person they must be to feel powerful and get their jollies by doing that. Just looks like a waste of precious life to me.

    At this point it looks like everyone is willing to let him twist in the wind and I will follow-suit as well. Though it is fun to see some of the odd and interesting phrases he turns. For his other opinions I’ll just treat them with a good old fashioned… “What? I can’t hear you… Sorry… huh? Sorry, can’t hear you. try again later…”

    LOL Too Fun.

    Opening day is less than two weeks away! Good luck Curt and I hope the prep work for KC is coming along well. We can’t wait to see you take the mound when the season starts!

    Deane

  13. buckydent permalink
    March 21, 2007 12:03 pm

    Hey Schill,

    3rd place again this year or do you think the O’s can overtake you? Their pen is better than yours, so it’s definitely possible.

    We’ll keep the locker next to Damon’s open for you for next season.

    Good luck,
    Bucky

  14. acefox1 permalink
    March 21, 2007 12:47 pm

    Hey Bucky,

    Tell your guys in the bullpen that they’ll be throwing 200 innings each this year if Daniel Cabrera keeps walking our lineup in order like he did last year. LOL

    I think I heard something about Kris Benson not being available to eat a bunch of innings for you guys this year either….

    Still, ya gotta love the total rejection of reality and the big-time optimism. Last time I looked we never finished behind the Devil Rays.

    Keep on living the dream Bucky. :) j/k Just messing with ya. I think Camden Yards is a great park and love getting to see Tejada play and see Millar still get mobbed by Sox fans.

    Deane

  15. acefox1 permalink
    March 21, 2007 12:55 pm

    One quick question for your Q&A Curt.

    With some players having a fair amount of idle time and some players being notorious pranksters, what’s the best and/or worst prank anybody ever played on you?

    I’ve seen some players put a teammate’s truck up on cinder blocks, take off their $$$ custom wheels and hide them all over the ST facility in addition to the usual shaving cream pies in the face, icy-hot added to bars of soap and hot-foot pranks.

    Conversely what’s the best and/or worst prank you’ve ever played on someone else? You look like the competitor and clever sides of your personality would come up with some good ones. Plus, come on, you were a member of the 93 Phillies! Some of that frat-house culture must have rubbed off. LOL

    You can change the names to protect the guilty if you like. :) Are there some guidelines to follow, like don’t mess with guys that have their locker next to you or guys that could snap you in half with their small toe? LOL

    Just curious on that part of club-house life that most fans don’t get to know much about.

    Thanks!

    Deane

  16. spitball permalink
    March 21, 2007 2:18 pm

    acefox1 aka(Deane).
    I’m only poking a little fun here, but if scambodian is at one end of the color spectrum of “opinions” Then you my dear are certianly at the other.

    Mr. bloody sock is a great pitcher, and deserves just as much respect as any other 2004 player (former & current). He also does love the attention he brings to himself. On the other hand we have the, “oh am I supposed to run to second base NOW!” ( Manny Ramirez ) who wants about as much attention as a convict in a courtroom.

    You write very well, and sound pretty educated about baseball. But your posts are over the top in the kiss schilling Butt category. Stalker kind of scary. Please though, don’t take me to serious. I’m sure you are a great person.

    Just like I tell people around me. The little things that I do that irritate you will be the first thing you miss when I’m gone. Point is the person that started this blog is Curt Schilling. He is who he is. These are the things that mark his lifes little stories.

    and to all a good night…………

  17. edzo555 permalink
    March 21, 2007 3:38 pm

    Hi Curt,
    I was wondering if there was any correllation between the change of your company name (Green Monster Games) which had a Red Sox slant to it, and the recent contract talks which led you to change it to 38 Studios which has a decidedly less Red Sox feel to it?

    Very personal question I know, but the timing seems conspicuous. If so I’d love to hear why and if not I’d really love to hear why.

    Good Luck in the upcoming season! Go Sox!!!

  18. acefox1 permalink
    March 21, 2007 4:22 pm

    Oh thanks for some of the compliments Spitball. I’ll be the first to admit I’m a crazy, over-zealous fanboy and that in my eyes Curt Schilling can do no wrong.

    I don’t know if the term stalker is apropos. I’d never try chasing Curt down for his autograph or get him to notice me out in the real world. I’ve never written him fan snail-mail or asked him for anything.

    I am just trying to offer my viewpoint to set the record straight from my perspective. Bashing Curt is easy sport for a lot of people that can’t stand to see someone praised so much. I just think that if you look at the totality of Curt’s actions and what he stands for as a person, you can’t come to any conclusion other than he is a total freaking hero.

    I’ve never heard Curt stand up and say “Hey Everyone, look at me! I’m the greatest!!!” The closest he’s ever come was in saying that when battling his ankle problems in the 2004 ALCS and WS he prayed to God just to let him compete; not to beat the other team, but to have the ABILITY to compete. He then takes whatever attention comes his way and shines that light on ALS and the Shade Foundation. In this day and age, that’s totally amazing.

    If that’s what passes for someone who loves and craves attention and hogs the spotlight, then I say he’s welcome to it and please give him a second helping.

    I haven’t heard Curt crowing on here at all about the family he took in after Hurricane Katrina, but how freaking awesome was that. What a heck of an example that set.

    I don’t know, there are a thousand examples of what sets Curt apart from most other players. One of the many things I like is that when Curt came to Boston and started posting on SoSH he really made an effort to know the team, the fans and the history of the franchise.

    He didn’t just show up and say the usual dumb things we used to hear from other players that had simply ended up here and treated it like it was just like any other team. It didn’t take long for Curt to show that he gets what it means to be a part of the Red Sox and that he doesn’t take being part of the team’s history lightly.

    So I know I sound like I go overboard… I get that… and I’m okay with that. I’m fortunate to have a great job where I can participate in this blog while I troubleshoot problems over the phone, so I probably post a lot more than most “normal” people. I just can’t help that it’s a unique opportunity to interact with one of my personal heroes in a non-intrusive way.

    Again for anybody that would want to bash Curt, or try and bring him down a notch or two, I would just say that I’d be thrilled to see a lot more people with his character, commitment and attitude than the people that try and rip him just for some fun and attention.

    Deane

  19. ez1977 permalink
    March 22, 2007 12:10 pm

    Hey Curt,
    Love the blog.

    Quick question… why did you guys change name of the company? “someone” on eei said you company name changed the same week you came out and said that the Sox weren’t going to offer you another year? I think that’s a load of #@!#. Did you get run into copyright issues or something?

    Thanks and good luck this year.
    Ed

  20. March 23, 2007 2:01 pm

    Curt,

    It is very refreshing to hear you recount your days performance. It is such a cool insight into the mindset of a pitcher. I appreciate that you devote as much time to your blog so your fans can “connect” with you. I have always been a big fan of yours since you went to Arizona. I thought the 2000 season was extremely special. I was saddened when Randy Johnson left for the Yankees, but was and still, extremely happy you went to Boston. I think you are a very special person (and player) and I think Professional Sports would benefit from your example.

    Love the blog and look forward to reading more. Good luck this year, and if you see Manny, tell him I need a few extra bucks and would appreciate it if he could sell my grill for me ;)

    Chris

  21. beentown922 permalink
    April 1, 2007 11:57 pm

    Curt,

    This is a great thing that you are doing. Its interesting to hear the mindset of an MLB player. An as an active duty army officer and having served in Iraq, it is incredible what you and some of your fellow baseball players are doing in “Strikeouts for Troops.” Thanks and good luck this season.

  22. soxdad permalink
    November 6, 2007 2:30 pm

    Curt:

    In your years with the Red Sox, we fans have come to appreciate your professionalism as much as your determination to win. There’s a lot to be said for being with a team you enjoy, and the way you went about re-signing shows the value you place on that. Very classy. Ecstatic to have you with the team for at least one more year!

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 899 other followers

%d bloggers like this: