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Rule 5: Brandon Bailey - RHP -Astros

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Bailey was on Hot Stove this week and talked extensively about his work with Chris Holt while he was with the Astros.    Here’s some excerpts from Roch’s blog:

“Prior to being traded to the Astros, I didn’t have much familiarity with the data and pitch metrics,” he said. “When I got traded to Houston, they told me I have an elite-level fastball with a high spin rate, ... so they encouraged me to try to utilize that more so at the top of the strike zone, which was kind of mind-blowing to me because I grew up in an era where everyone’s got to keep the ball down. You’ve got to be trying to create sink and get ground balls, and for me, I just could never have a good feel for how to throw a two-seamer or a sinker or anything of that nature, so I just was like, ‘OK, I’m just going to try to throw this four-seamer as fast as I could.’ And discovering that I had that unique ability to create a high spin rate, which was probably the first thing. And combined with a solid changeup. And when I first got to Houston, my breaking ball definitely needed some work.

“Working with Chris Holt, we were able to develop a curveball and (are) in the process of trying to clean up the slider. So I think overall just having a really good fastball and changeup, and my mentality to attack hitters and just go right at them and have that bulldog mentality are things I’d say are my biggest strengths.”

* * *

“Chris is great,” Bailey said. “He’s definitely somebody who lives and breathes baseball. He shows up to the park every single day with an internal flame to try to help his players become the best that they can possibly be. And as a player you really respond well to that, when you see a guy that is at the park really early, constantly trying to figure out ways to help you perform at your highest level when it comes to competition.

“He’s just a great guy and always wants the best for his players and I think his work ethic is second to none. I just have the upmost respect for Chris and I’m excited to begin working with him once again.”

* * *

“[O]ver the past two seasons, working in a tandem rotation within the Astros organization, I’ve learned a lot about the process of getting my body ready to go in a relief role as well. So I think that’s one of my strengths is I can be very versatile.

“I think having a five-pitch mix benefits me as a starter, but then also I feel like being able to narrow down my arsenal to three pitches if needed in that one-inning role as a relief pitcher also is extremely beneficial. I just want to help Baltimore win as many baseball games as I can in whatever role that may be.”

https://www.masnsports.com/school-of-roch/2019/12/bailey-on-rule-5-selection-it-was-pretty-surreal.html

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6 minutes ago, wildcard said:

Holt:  Brandon Bailey to get a shot at being in the rotation in ST.

https://www.masnsports.com/school-of-roch/2019/12/holt-on-bailey-theres-a-lot-to-like.html

As of today he’s in our rotation. Sounds like we might give Akin some more development time in AAA, but even with Akin here on OD, that would only give us 4 SP. 

It sounds like Bailey and Holt are already on the same page from their history in HOU. 

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It feels like right now Bailey/Akin are the incumbent 4/5's until/unless an Andrew Cashner reunion or something comparable happens late in the offseason, but what I'm most curious to see in April/May is how close in innings the long relievers (tandem partners?) get to the starters.  If Bailey/Akin are having a good game, will they be hooked after twice through the order just on general principle?  The more aggressive teams get about middle distance pitching, the less 4/5 starter labels will matter.

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I’m all for giving Bailey a shot.   He sounds like he’ll be fun to watch.   I expect him to take some lumps, but so long as he’s at all competitive I’m all in favor of letting him develop on our watch.   

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8 minutes ago, interloper said:

 

Showing up to minicamp is so 2010's - this will impress the bosses more.

The next CBA will be all kinds of contentious, but I am curious if GM's will ask the owners to ask for contracts that give the teams more offseason time to curate player's progress.

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15 hours ago, interloper said:

 

@Luke-OH What do you think about the focus on the SL and CT?  Way too early to infer that he’s paired he’s 5 pitch mix down to 3 right?  I think he was probably just talking about that video.

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During our brief chat yesterday morning, which began as usual with a firm handshake from Wynns, I asked whether any of the younger pitchers stood out to him during bullpen sessions or live batting practice.

Two rotation candidates were lumped together by their statuses.

“Both our Rule 5s,” Wynns said.

Brandon Bailey and Michael Rucker have been noticed.

“I’m impressed with both of them,” Wynns said. “They have great big league stuff and their potential is huge. Now it just comes down to let the games start under the lights and see how they react.”

https://www.masnsports.com/school-of-roch/2020/02/wynns-on-rule-5-picks-they-have-great-big-league-stuff.html

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49 minutes ago, Frobby said:

 

 

I’m about as optimistic As you can be about Rule 5 picks. I like Wynns positive team like good words. But seriously “great big league stuff” ? Is Wynns even qualified to know what that even is? 70 games of part time play in the majors. 

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6 minutes ago, Roll Tide said:

I’m about as optimistic As you can be about Rule 5 picks. I like Wynns positive team like good words. But seriously “great big league stuff” ? Is Wynns even qualified to know what that even is? 70 games of part time play in the majors. 

He probably knows big league stuff. As a non-roster player I doubt he speak ill of anyone. 

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I ended up not seeing as much of today’s game as I hoped, but I did get to see Bailey’s first inning of work.   He left a pitch up to the first batter that got crushed for a triple that hit the fence in RCF (a better CF than Wilkerson might have caught it, but it was very well hit).     But then he induced a grounder to Davis, who made a good play to freeze the runner and still make a good feed to the pitcher; struck out the next guy on a very nice breaking pitch that broke late out of the zone, and then induced a soft grounder back to the mound to escape the inning.   I didn’t see his second inning but I liked what I saw.   

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47 minutes ago, Frobby said:

I ended up not seeing as much of today’s game as I hoped, but I did get to see Bailey’s first inning of work.   He left a pitch up to the first batter that got crushed for a triple that hit the fence in RCF (a better CF than Wilkerson might have caught it, but it was very well hit).     But then he induced a grounder to Davis, who made a good play to freeze the runner and still make a good feed to the pitcher; struck out the next guy on a very nice breaking pitch that broke late out of the zone, and then induced a soft grounder back to the mound to escape the inning.   I didn’t see his second inning but I liked what I saw.   

Ok, but like I’ve been saying for a long time, Wilkerson is not a center fielder.

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I was at the game today sitting behind home plate.   Bailey was hit hard a couple times and better outfield play would have made his day much better.  In the second inning he pitched he got into a little trouble but grinded through it.  I thought it was a solid outing. He struck one guy out on a nasty change up curveball.  I was under the impression that pitch was a work in progress for him, but he froze a batter today with it.

 

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