Robbie Ray relied on two pitches in Toronto when he won the American League Cy Young Award last season. A 4-seam fastball and slider.
However, the batter makes adjustments.
And now, so is Ray.
The left-handed player played against Oakland Athletics on Sunday afternoon, allowing only 28 strikeouts in 27 innings and 2 runs in 11 hits in the last four starts.
What's the difference?
A two-seam fastball that Ray said he hadn't used for six years.
Mariners manager Scott Surveys, Harler, pitching coach Pete Woodworth, after Houston hit three home runs from Ray in the first two innings of the start on June 6th. Flocked to the catcher Cal Raleigh.
"They weren't missing. Many pitches were right above the plate," Servais said. "And after the first two innings, I thought," OK, let's try something else. " Sometimes I don't participate in those conversations. ... I just grabbed him and said, "Hey man, we need to shake it. I know there's no clear plan B. Let's make one."
Ray returned to Two Seams and did not allow him to exceed the last three innings of the game.
"Raising three zeros on a pitch that hasn't been thrown for six years was definitely encouraging," Ray said. "It shows how I can adapt to the game and make decisions on the fly."
Ray (6-6, 3.78 ERA) has been 2-0 since its inception. I lowered ERA by 1.19 runs. He is one-on-one, ERA is 2.55, and he has 35 strikeouts in four career starts with Auckland.
"They had a slider under the zone. They weren't really chasing it," Ray said. "In the zone, they seemed to hit it every time, so to me it seemed like they were just looking in, so everything wasn't inside them, like that. I was wondering if I could get something, I just thought that if I could do something the other way around, it might look different. It might surprise them. "
A's plan could turn into another pitching duel against right-handed Frankie Montas (3-8, 3.20) on Sunday. Montas was 2-2, scoring 2.60 ERA in 11 appearances (8 starts) with Seattle.
Auckland's Paul Blackburn threw a scoreless inning on 61/3, and Mariners rookie George Kirby allowed seven runs once.
"(Kirby) threw the ball well, but Paul matched him on the pitch," said Mark Kotsay, A's manager who sent off in the sixth inning, claiming a ball and a strike. rice field. "Overall, I thought these two starters really worked."
The Mariners hit a solo home run by Justin Upton, A.J. He scored 2 outs on his 8th off. Puku.
"Trust in our people hanging there," Servais said. "It's easy to say that today isn't our day, so we'll move on until tomorrow. We didn't do that."
– Field-level media