If you haven’t been paying attention to the Cleveland Indians (I can’t blame you), Ubaldo Jimenez’s velocity has dropped like a rock – especially bad in 2013 so far. Here’s the opening pitch from April 8th:
Yikes. Remember, this is the same guy who had no problem hitting 100 MPH in starts in Colorado whenever he felt like it – sitting 95-96 MPH.
I wrote about his mechanical problems on The Hardball Times in a series of articles dating back to last year when the issues started up.
- Ubaldo Jimenez and his missing 96 MPH heater: A mechanical look
- Ubaldo Jimenez: A quick mechanics review
- Ubaldo Jimenez: Perception vs. Reality
Very disconcerting. The Cleveland Indians reportedly told Ubaldo to not look at a radar gun and measure his results. That’s exactly the opposite of a good process – using the radar gun as a consistent measuring tool is exactly how it should be used. Controlled experiments is how progress is made – make a tweak in mechanics/training, measure results over time. See if you get better or worse as you master the training or the mechanical pattern.
EDIT: Wrote a piece on the Indians or the beat writer for the Indians covering up Ubaldo’s velocity drop on my personal blog.