Jesse Biddle made his season debut this Saturday with a rather uninspiring 1 IP 3 H 2 ER 1 BB 1 K line while throwing a large number of pitches. There wasn’t a big enough sample to make any large judgments about how his year will go since he seemed a bit more amped than usual. Biddle showed some good and some bad, as his delivery was not always consistent. Rather than look through all the pitches lets take a look at some of them.
The good was that fastball was 92-94 with a lot more 94’s than 92s. He didn’t control the pitch very well, and was often up in the zone with the pitch. It looked like he was overthrowing and should have pitched at a slightly lower velocity in order to get some better control. He was at his best on a few pitches down in the zone at 94 like this one, unfortunately this one was a bit outside.
We all have heard about Biddle’s curveball over the years. Fans have a tendency to overrate it because of its huge amount of movement while scouts think it can get a bit loopy. Both agree that when it is on, it can be downright nasty and just beautiful.
The problem has been that the curve has been part of his delivery problems and he can lose feel and drive on the pitch leading to things like this:
The biggest surprise was when Biddle unleashed this pitch early in the game.
The gif cuts off before 88 shows up on the radar gun. This pitch is nothing I have ever seen from Jesse before. It comes from a place close to the fastball and then sharply breaks off. It is certainly a pitch that could be very interesting if he can control it. I like it because it continues to drive everything down and keeps him coming out of the delivery as much as the curveball.
This first slider was not the only one of the day as he broke off this one later:
It wasn’t a strike, but it had the same nasty break to it.
Overall if the slider is real, I like Biddle’s ability to make a nice improvement in 2015. I do worry about the command and control as the delivery is still not consistent.