David Price's Wildness Controls Call-Up.

Hurry up and be efficient, k thx much.(Photo by Dennis Adair)

The whole scenario in which David Price would go to Durham for six weeks and work on a few things like pitch efficiency and expanding his arsenal is not going as planned. Without the benefit of pitch f/x or seeing Price live we don't know how the pitch selection is coming along and which pitches working for him. This is the process part of pitching that we love to talk about. What we do know is the results part of Price's pitching is no where close to where we want them to be.

The numbers:

W-L

ERA

IP

K

BB

HR

K/9

BB/9

HR/9

1-4

4.74

24.2

21

16

4

7.83

5.94

1.53

Hmmm, not quite the numbers that we were hoping for. The biggest problem for Price continues to be control which was a major part of the pitch efficiency the Rays wanted corrected before throwing him in the big league rotation. Price has been on strict 75ish pitch limit all season. Now 75 pitches isn't a lot, but for Price it should be enough to get him into the 5th inning of not 6th. However, Price is struggling to get out of the fourth inning at this juncture of the season. He has pitched just five innings twice in six starts and has gone four innings or less four times including three starts where he failed to finish the fourth inning.

Last night Price completed four innings, but used up 79 pitches with only 49% of them being strikes. He gave up four runs on six hits and FIVE walks. He did not register a strikeout for the first time all season. He did get a ridiculous amout of ground ball outs(11 out of 12)  which was the lone saving grace. For those talk radio hosts calling for Price to come up and replace Jeff Niemann, they are failing to realize that he's just not showing the signs of a player ready for a call up. His K/BB rate is a poor 1.32 and it's even worse against left-handers (6 walks, 4 strikeouts) which is a situation he should thrive in especially with his slider. From the stretch, Price has walked 10 batters while striking out eight. This is a reverse from his normal delivery in which he has 13 K's and just six walks.

Should we hit the panic button? Absolutely not. After all, good processes will lead to good results, you know. It's easy to remember Game 7, and it's easy to point out that Price shouldn't need as much development time as a normal pitcher, but let's try to remember that at this time last year Price was a member of the Vero Beach Devil Rays. The things holding Price back seem to be minor problems and ones that can be corrected with the proper coaching and time to excecute that coaching. Again, the processes have to be in place before the results can show. Even thought it doesn't look like it right now, one day this summer David Price will be called up and he will never look back. But for now any velociraptor sightings in St. Petersburg have been slightly delayed.

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