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Pitcher Preview: Andrew Albers vs Esmil Rogers

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The tale of two guys who most of the league have yet to hear of.

Hannah Foslien


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Andrew Albers 2-2 6 6 1 1 0 0 38.2 38 18 17 4 3 15 3.96 1.06

Today you can draw a line between Albers three good starts and his three bad ones. His biggest issue is similar to that of every other Twins pitcher Minnesota has trotted out to the hill since the departure of Scott Baker and Francisco Liriano: the stuff is average and he doesn't miss many bats, so if he's not at the top of his game he can be very hittable.

One option would be for Albers to do a better job on the fringes of the strike zone. Right now his command has been impeccable, at least in terms of walks (just three in 38.2 innings), so it might be time to see if he can benefit by going outside the zone a bit more often. Risking an extra walk or two per game might be worth it, if it's going to help induce weak contact on balls in play. It's a strategy that would test his control, but Albers will already have a hard enough time being consistently effective. Any strategy that can help is a good one.


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Esmil Rogers 4-7 41 16 0 0 0 1 117.1 133 65 62 18 35 81 4.76 1.43

A 7.07 ERA in July and a 7.66 ERA in August kind of blew what had been a really good season up to that point. He's bounced back a little bit over his last four starts, getting his season ERA below 5.00 again. Rogers notched a win his last time out, too; it was his first win since June 18. For April and May, Rogers was almost exclusively a relief pitcher for the Jays. When the implosions across the talented Toronto squad expanded, Rogers was pushed into starter's duties.

While he offers a fastball with velocity in the low to mid 90s, it hasn't been particularly effective throughout his Major League career. Instead, his best pitch is, far and away, his slider. The slider is a strong mid 80s offering that he has no problems dropping into the strike zone at the hitter's knees, whether right or left-handed.