Throughout the season, Mariners broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith will provide content on From the Corner of Edgar & Dave, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the Mariners players and organization. In this installment Aaron writes about the sterling relief performance by Blake Beavan last night vs. the Yankees.
If Blake Beavan had started Thursday night’s game against the Yankees — instead of appearing in long relief as he did — it would have been by far his best start of 2013. Beavan was called up prior to the game from Triple-A Tacoma to be the Mariners “long man” out of the bullpen and, wouldn’t you know it, was needed immediately.
“In Tacoma, I got back to the pitcher that I was when I was having success,” Beavan told me prior to the game from the Mariners clubhouse. “I was attacking hitters, using my fastball, and getting ahead.”
Beavan certainly pitched with a nice pace Thursday night against the Yankees, allowing just one hit over six and two-thirds scoreless innings. He joined John Montague (1977) as the only other Mariner reliever to face the minimum 20 batters over over six and two-thirds frames. He also became the first reliever since Jake Westbrook (Indians) on July 19, 2004 vs. Detroit to face the minimum amount of batters in a relief outing of at least six and two-thirds innings (7.0 IP, 21 batters faced).
Beavan recorded half of his outs on ground balls, which is a good sign that he’s back on track.
“When I’m on, I’m getting a lot of outs with my sinker. Everything works off my two-seam fastball.”
One thing I’ll be interested to talk to Blake about later today is how frequently he started a batter off with a first pitch breaking ball. He throws a nice slider and works in a 12-6 curveball, but it was odd to me that he didn’t start more batters off with a fastball seeing how he got away from his fastball prior to being sent down. Now, all that said, what he did against the Yankees was obviously effective, but it was still a little surprising.
Beavan is a quality guy to have in the clubhouse and looked awfully sharp Thursday night. Hopefully this is a sign of more good things to come.