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Fangraphs: Buck, Life, Brady and Mancini


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Buck Showalter was asked about Chris Sale when the Orioles visited Fenway Park earlier this week. More specifically, he was asked about the overpowering lefty’s whip-like arm action, which in the eyes of many makes him more susceptible to injury. The often-erudite skipper pooh-poohed their concern.

“I remember Kevin Appier,” said Showalter. “For years, everybody talked about his delivery and how he wouldn’t last. He pitched for 100 years. There are exceptions to everything, so you have to be careful. I remember we took a pitcher with the Yankees, years ago, named Mark Hutton, who was like Gossage — all arms, legs, flailing all over the place. Nobody could hit him. One spring they smoothed him out, because they were afraid he was going to get hurt, and he couldn’t get anybody out.

“The last thing you want to do when you draft a guy, or get him, is start making a lot of changes. (Pitching coach) Roger (McDowell) and our guys are real good about that. When I hear a pitching coordinator saying everybody has to do it exactly this way… robots get hit a lot. They get squared up a lot.”

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Trey Mancini squared up a pair of baseballs in Baltimore’s 12-5 win over the Red Sox on Wednesday. The Orioles outfielder powered two balls over Fenway Park’s Green Monster for the first multi-homer game of his career. One night earlier, he hit a ringing double in his initial big-league visit to the historic venue. He’d been there once before.

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Mancini credits someone who once roamed that very outfield for his emergence as a power threat.

“I changed my swing in 2015 after working with Brady Anderson,” explained Mancini, who Baltimore drafted in the eighth round out of Notre Dame two years earlier. “He saw one at bat of mine in spring training, and told me I wasn’t using my body as capably as I could. He stood me straight up, and now I just transfer my weight from the back to the front. That helped my trajectory. It’s all about leverage now. My power has definitely increased since I made that change.”

Mancini homered three times in 14 at bats after being called up by the Orioles last September. This season he’s gone deep twice in 17 at bats.

http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/sunday-notes-quietly-belisle-buck-on-robots-mancinis-pop-bedrosians-role-more/

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