Monday, September 22, 2008

What the hell are the Jays doing to their pitchers' arms?

In spite of the title of this post, we don't want to unnecessarily feed into any b.s. about how J.P. is singlehandedly wrecking the arms of the entire pitching staff. Because seriously, you know that whole argument is coming, don't you? How else are the dyspeptic Jim Kelley's of the world going to deal with Shaun Marcum's name being added to the list of fallen pitchers, alongside Dustin McGowan, Casey Janssen, and Jeremy Accardo.

When as many pitchers start to hit the 60 day DL with elbow and shoulder issues, you have to take a look at how they are utilized and whether if there is some level of unnecessary abuse that is coming into play. There's nothing that immediately comes to mind for us, and a mere recounting to the pitchcounts and innings totals for the fallen will probably not tell the whole story. Those numbers don't tell how many pitches the pitchers were throwing in the bullpen before the game, nor do they tell how many pitches they threw in their side sessions in between starts/appearances.

We'd guess that what is happening with the Jays is just part of the peril of relying on young homegrown pitching talent. Yankees fans can probably spill volumes on this after the year that their future pitching stars have had. (Or not had, as it were.)

Incidentally, there's a great interview with Jays pitching coach Brad Arnsberg that was posted at Baseball Prospectus last week. In it, he mentions that Roy Halladay has significantly cut down his side sessions to ensure that he has more left in the tank (or the arm) for his starts.

Viva Las Vegas!
The word isn't yet official, but it appears as though the Jays' Triple A activities will be run out of Las Vegas next year. Given how few options the team had, the City of Broken Dreams is probably as good a spot as any for them to stash their top minor league prospects.

Although if Travis Snider gets sent down to start 2009, we sincerely hope that he's kept away from the cheap and plentiful buffets.

The Dodgers got the hell out of Las Vegas after this past season, noting that the facilities at the cavernous and rapidly aging Cashman field were inadequate for their prospects.

As a side note, Las Vegas is changing their franchise's nickname. The new ownership group which purchased the franchise last year didn't care for the name "51s" and the associated alien/UFO/conspiracies that are tied to it.


EB0 said...

Mechanics. That is the BIGGEST factor that determines injuries. Unfortunately for Marcum, and Mcgowen they been using poor mechanics. Marcum more so than McGowan.

Tao of Stieb said...

Really? Because Marcum's mechanics always seemed smooth and effortless to us.

The Ack said...

Fuck Syracuse, that's what I think.

dave said...

The good thing is it seemed to be implied that the Jays are only signed on for 2009 so they could move to a closer location/better park in another year.

Tao of Stieb said...

Two years. All of these agreements are for a minimum of two.

Anonymous said...

2 years, by then according to Wilner they will be a good team......probably end up 5th and stay in Vegas for the rest of time.
Something is happening with the Jays pitchers,because the Rays and Sox haven't had this many injuries with their young kids.........

Tao of Stieb said...

Well, Kazmir's never been the picture of good health.

Nnamdi said...

Really? Because Marcum's mechanics always seemed smooth and effortless to us.

That has very little to due with it. His arm action is terrible and has timing problems.

If you look at Marcum and Burrnet there mechanics are very similar both of them get their elbow far above the plane of their shoulders.

Yes it's true max effort pitchers tend to break down faster mainly due to the violent nature of pitching but they still can stay relatively healthy if they have a good mechanics word to Lincecum.

It's unfortunate but many of the Jay's pitchers seem to have mechanical problems except for Casey who I will have to examine further. That short pitcher Tim Collins is next to get injured.

Matt said...

Marcum has a very obvious hyperabductive motion in which his elbow comes above the acromial line of his shoulders, putting unnecessary pressure on his elbow. Chris O' Leary had him pegged as a serious injury risk last year and proved, as he does with great consistency, to be correct.

You should check out his site here: if you're interested in pitching mechanics it is a good place to start.

O Leary also accurately predicted injuries for Chris Carpenter, BJ Ryan, Billy Wagner, and many others.

Looking at a few google images, McGowan seems (though I can't be sure without high speed video) to have a timing problem and he isn't in the high-cocked position at footstrike which is going to cause problems and shows signs on the Inverted L that O Leary speaks about a lot.

BJ Ryan and AJ Burnett both have very serious inverted L's and it's no surprise they have suffered injury problems.

dave said...

Ugh. I know as much about minor league affiliations as I do why certain things become fashion trends. (like my new fave, the picnic blanket pretending to be a scarf)

matt said...

It's called a pashmina and I fucking HATE it, I live in Montreal and every second person has one. I guess Yasser Arafat and the rest of Palestine really had the jump on North America fashion-wise.

Darren Priest said...

What does the Tao of Steib think of the Rays going into the post-season?

A. Who cares?
B. We hate them!
C. Nobody from the AL East!
D. We wish them well.
E. Some other, more witty, option not listed.

The Ack said...

E. Fuck Joe Maddon!

Cubs fan said...

E. Go White Sox!

I want an all Chicargo World Series.

Anonymous said...

Nice post, kind of drawn out though. Really good subject matter though.

Anonymous said...

Nice post, kind of drawn out though. Really good subject matter though.

Anonymous said...

This web site is without a doubt extraordinary, really worth looking at