Lack Of Whiffs As A Starter
Now, those numbers aren’t awful. As I alluded to before, only two other left-handed starting pitchers in baseball threw as hard as Duffy did in 2015.
So even if the velocity dips, it will still be a very high number for a left-handed starter.
However, the biggest difference (again, as I mentioned in that first quote) is that he hasn’t gotten swings and misses on those fastballs.
More from KC Royals News
- KC Royals Free Agent Hunt: 3 Tampa Bay pitchers
- Grading the 2022 KC Royals: The $25 million man
- KC Royals Winter Meetings Tracker: Expectations met
- KC Royals Winter Meetings Tracker: Day 3 update
- KC Royals Winter Meetings Tracker: Day 2 update
One big reason for this (and what distinguishes him from Price and Sale) is that he doesn’t really have a plus secondary pitch to get hitters out with.
Price has his changeup and Sale has his slider.
Duffy’s out pitch is that fastball, and without another plus pitch, it makes that fastball much easier to sit on.
Duffy improves as a reliever because he doesn’t need three good pitches or even two really good pitches to get outs.
He can live on that extra bit of velo on his fastball and use his curveball and changeup as decoys.
In the rotation, Duffy will lose that.
As a baseball fan (and huge Duffy fan), I would rather see Duffy in the bullpen.
However, the Royals are pretty desperate for a starting pitcher, and as much fun as Duffy is in the bullpen, he can be that guy.
I still think his best value is in the bullpen, but he is certainly capable of helping the Royals out of this pickle.
And I’m sure he’s happy to get the chance to start again.