The Royals are riding a five game winning streak and have won ten of fourteen since that disastrous Houston series that led to the reassignment of hitting coach Pedro Grifol to catching instructor. I don't know if you've noticed, but the catching has been fantastic over the last fourteen games. The Royals have two very favorable pitching matchups the rest of this series, so its imperative they continue this momentum.
Hector Noesi began his career in the Yankees organization and was dealt to Seattle in the Miguel Pineda-Jesus Montero deal that has just been a disaster for everyone involved. Noesi pitched for just over two seasons in Seattle with disappointing results before they sold him to Texas this past April. A few weeks ago, the White Sox claimed him off waivers and stuck him in their rotation despite his 14.21 ERA for the year. That's how bad their rotation has been. Remember those days for us?
Noesi is a 27 year-old right-hander who struggles with his command, even though he put up good walk numbers in the minor league. His strikeout rate (6.6 per nine innings) in 243.2 Major League innings is nothing exceptional and he has been pounded for a 5.50 career ERA. He throws a fastball in the low-90s with some tail to it, and his best secondary pitch is a changeup with some movement on it. He also throws a curveball and slider that are well below average. Without a good breaking pitch, Noesi has had pretty much no career split against lefties/righties. He gives up a lot of home runs and profiles more as a AAAA starter or possibly a useful long-reliever.
Danny Duffy goes to the hill facing Chicago for the first time in 2014. In seven starts he has allowed just 28 hits, and batters are hitting just .203/.297/.333 in those starts. If this is at all sustainable for Duffy, I say keep it up. A more efficient and democratic (strikeouts are fascist) Duffy is a Duffy that can last deeper into games. Between his efficiency and the efficiency Yordano Ventura exhibited the other night, Dave Eiland is in line for some sort of award, or at least a gift basket of fruit.
Is Duffy's success sustainable with a lower strikeout rate?
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