(Courtesy of the AP)
Masahiro Tanaka returns to the hill
How he's gone about showing all those things off in 2 games has been fun to watch. On 4/4 against the Blue Jays, Tanaka threw 97 pitches and managed to throw all 7 of the pitches he knows: 30 sinkers, 24 splitters, 18 sliders, 12 4-seam fastballs, 7 curveballs, 5 cutters, and 1 changeup. He showed off the whole arsenal to a deep and powerful lineup, got 13 swinging strikes, 8 Ks, and a win.
Last Wednesday, he took a different approach against a not-so-deep but still powerful Orioles lineup. 101 pitches (30 4-seamers, 23 sinkers, 21 splitters, 21 sliders, 6 curveballs), 22 swinging strikes, 10 Ks, and a no-decision. After working primarily sinker/offspeed in his debut, Tanaka switched it up to work primarily off his fastball and eliminated his lesser pitches from the mix against the O's. The peripheral results were even better than his first start and he should have had another W.
So what should we expect from Ma-kun
(Pitch count breakdowns courtesy of Brooks Baseball)