Blog Entry

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

Posted on: March 3, 2012 12:03 pm
By Matt Snyder

Taking anything substantive from spring training games is an exercise in futility, for many reasons. Taking anything from practice is even worse. Still, with Yu Darvish's transition to America, little bits and pieces (small sample alert) might be of interest to some.

Friday, Darvish faced All-Star teammates Ian Kinsler, Elvis Andrus, Josh Hamilton and Adrian Beltre. The results overall were good, but there were some issues. Via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
Darvish threw 21 pitches, 11 for strikes and retired three of the four hitters he faced, with the lone exception a walk on five pitches to Hamilton. Darvish also fell behind the first three hitters, and twice was behind 3-0.

Kinsler popped to left field on a 3-2 slider, and Andrus followed and became Darvish's only strikeout of the inning. Hamilton walked on five pitches, and Darvish dominated Beltre, who hit a roller to second base.
The Star Telegram also reports that Darvish's fastball hit 96 while his curve was as slow as 66. The players who hit against him seemed to think his stuff was really good.

"The ball moved tremendously," Hamilton said ( "Overall, he looked great. He looks very confident on the mound, and that will continue to grow the more games we get into."

I'd say overall this is good news for the Rangers. Command is an issue, but it's March 3. That can get better as the season approaches. Stuff is what matters now, and Darvish has it. Of course, let's reiterate it's March 3 and this couldn't have been a smaller sample size.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnBaseball on Twitter, subscribe to the RSS feed and "like" us on Facebook.
Category: MLB

Since: Jan 18, 2012
Posted on: March 4, 2012 10:50 am

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

Wilson signed for 77.5MM for 5 years, Darvish signed for around 60MM for 6 years. Gorget the 51.1MM posting fee, Darvish gets none of it. Wilson is making over 5MM more.yr than Darvish. Darvish throughs 5mph harder with much better offspeed stuff, and much better control. Wilson is afraid of contact and is a nibbler. If you watched the playoffs, batters just waited Wilson out and pounded the rock when he came in the zone. He walks way too many. I the Rangers did...Darvish is the much better pitcher, and 7 years younger. I think it is easy to project Darvish having the best career over here than any Japanese pitcher in MLB history. He will beat Matt Moore for ROY and could even win CY Young...he is that good

Since: Jul 1, 2010
Posted on: March 4, 2012 5:09 am

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

I think the Rangers are literally "banking" on Darvish's upside vs. Wilson's projected downslide here.  Wilson maxed out the last two years in my opinion and is going down.  Darvish has 5/6 years of upside before he gets to Wilson's age and I think he'll improve quite a bit and hopefully, if the Rangers can keep their core guys together, he'll benefit from that offense whereas CJ will have to pitch those 2-1 and 3-2 games and hope Albert hits a dinger or two for him to win.  GO RANGERS!

Since: Jul 1, 2010
Posted on: March 4, 2012 5:03 am

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

The way I look at it, the Rangers probably thought that Wilson had maxed out his potential at about 16 wins and he'll be 32 this year.  If Darvish only wins say 12 or 13 games this year (I know it's a big IF)....he's still got 6 years on CJ (Yu being 25)....the Rangers are banking on him improving (which I think he will) vs. Wilson already maxed out and heading the other way....good luck with that Angels!  GO RANGERS!

Since: Jan 11, 2012
Posted on: March 3, 2012 4:04 pm

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

also, even when guys would swing and miss, he was missing his own spots over half the time, sometimes missing by over a foot.  

Since: Jan 11, 2012
Posted on: March 3, 2012 3:51 pm

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

watch his youtube videos striking guys out.  it's the same as strasburg's college videos.  he's getting called 3rd strikes that are not strikes.  and he's getting guys swinging at things well out of the zone.  mlb will definitely test his command.  

Since: Jun 3, 2010
Posted on: March 3, 2012 12:52 pm

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

I mean it's more telling right now (March 3). Once the real games start, I absolutely agree location is more important. I'm just saying he has a month to work out the location issues and stuff is more natural.

Since: May 8, 2007
Posted on: March 3, 2012 12:39 pm

Darvish shows good stuff against teammates

Location is more important than "stuff", so I'd have to disagree with the writer on that one. However, I do agree that on March 3rd, it's not exactly relevant information yet, especially considering the variables that Darvish is facing right now. I have a bad feeling (being a non-Rangers fan), that this guy is going to work even better than advertised.

I anticipate a "Nomo-esque" introduction to the league where he dominates for awhile until the players get adjusted. The real key will be to see how he adjusts back to the MLB, once they have him figured out a bit. Only time will tell if he's worth twice what the Angels paid for CJ Wilson.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or