John Beamer raves on Phil Hughes:
Hughes’ ace-like projections are based solely off of one pitch: an uber-strong fastball, typically a four-seamer but also with some two-seam stuff mixed in. It tops out at 96 mph and regularly sits in the 91-95 mph zone. Combine that with plus command and you have a top-draw strike out pitch. Let’s define plus command. Simply put, he can place the ball exactly where he wants when he wants while hurling 95 mph gas. This command and power combination will sit at the cornerstone of Hughes’ success or failure for years to come. If he becomes a Hall-of-Fame caliber pitcher it will be because of this, likewise if he sinks to obscurity. He launches the fastball around 60-70% of the time.
“95 mph gas”?
I watched both of Hughes’ big league starts this year and his fastball was usually in the 89-92 MPH range. I have no idea what Beamer is talking about here. It will be interesting to check out the gun in Phil’s next start for the Yankees – which should be soon now.