Originally posted on Fangraphs  |  Last updated 7/26/13
Rick Porcello has changed his pitching mix this year. Most noticeably, he’s ditched his cutter for a curveball. The move was done for a variety of reasons, but the work continues to this day. Because even once you make a change, you have to work hard to maintain it. The Tiger starter told me that he “really dedicated” himself to working on his curve this offseason, mostly because the cutter/slider “wasn’t really working.” Since it moves left to right, it cuts right into the meat of the plate for lefties. “The curveball is a more effective pitch to left-handers, which is something I struggle with,” Porcello admitted to me before his team played the White Sox in Chicago this week. Over his career, the pitcher has allowed lefties lower strikeout and grounder rates and higher walk rates. So this past winter, Porcello went to work: “The first thing I did this offseason was to really fine-tune my mechanics to where I was getting to a consistent release point, keeping everything the same, and
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