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Nats pitching coach wants fewer Ks

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08:10 AM ET 07.13 | The man coaching baseball's best pitching staff is not someone who wants his pitchers chasing the position's glamour stat. In fact the thought of it makes Steve McCatty recoil. He crosses his arms. His head shakes. A sour expression crosses his face. "Strikeouts are bull[bleep]," he says. ... He'd rather have a nice, quick ground ball to shortstop. That seems so much more efficient. "If you try to strike out every hitter you're going to burn up pitches," says McCatty, the Nationals pitching coach. "Look, just do the math. If you're taking 15-20 pitches to get through every inning that will multiply fast." He would rather his pitchers let the hitters hit the ball. This is an organizational emphasis of the Nationals.

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Stephen Strasburg, Getty Images Stephen Strasburg, Getty Images
July 13, 2012  08:28 AM ET

Be careful what you wish for.

July 13, 2012  08:32 AM ET

"He would rather his pitchers let the hitters hit the ball."

First, they are winning so I can't argue that point, but - hit balls sometimes are singles, doubles, triples and home runs ... it happens ... so letting them "hit the ball" doesn't always work, especially against power hitters, etc, etc, etc ... would seem to defeat the "emphasis" ... just mho ...

July 13, 2012  08:50 AM ET

I just wonder if he really thinks that he is the only one who knows that the more pitches you throw to a batter you count goes up quicker. I just wonder also if he was around when Ryan, Gibson, and others were pitching what he would tell some of the greatest strikeout pitchers to do also.

Comment #4 has been removed
July 13, 2012  10:58 AM ET

I Like this guy, that's why we got 8 other players on the Field!!

July 13, 2012  11:18 AM ET

Pitch to contact.

July 13, 2012  12:51 PM ET

Yep--M's are trying to convince their young pitchers to give up ground balls--it's why they keep Ryan at SS despite hitting in the .180's--he turns almost every ground ball hit his direction into an out. Not sure a team in the playoff picture could afford Ryan's bat, but it definitely helps to have good gloves in the infield.

July 13, 2012  01:59 PM ET
QUOTE(#6):

Pitch to contact.

Disagree... As a Pitcher, you pitch to your strength anything else will see your ERA "multiply fast".

His pitchers should tell him "I can't help it if the hitter can't hit my stuff" :-)

July 13, 2012  02:53 PM ET
QUOTE(#1):

Be careful what you wish for.

you may get your wish come truth,,,

July 13, 2012  02:55 PM ET
QUOTE(#8):

His pitchers should tell him "I can't help it if the hitter can't hit my stuff" :-)

sounds childless but what else can strasburg do?? unless he smoke a few players and hit them from time to time just to get some double plays??

 
July 14, 2012  12:27 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

I just wonder also if he was around when Ryan, Gibson, and others were pitching what he would tell some of the greatest strikeout pitchers to do also.

It's cuz of this damned pitch count that everyone's obsessed with. It doesnt show you how pitchers are doing. Some of the best were out there throwing 120+ pitches per outing and 300 innings a year.

Let them pitch to their strengths. If a guy can make'm look silly do it. If ur a groundball pitcher, induce those. You got to dance with you brung ya.

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