Brian Broderick: August 25, 2010
FB: Consistently 91-92, topped out at 95 twice.
Very good location with his fastball on both sides of the plate.
Looked like it would jump just a little at the end, that classic “rising” action
Was hitting 91-92 in the 8th and 9th innings.
2-SEAM FB: 90-92, topped at 94.
Very good use of the pitch.
Had some sink and armside run to the ball.
Thrown to both sides of the plate, could be very effective if he gets more run to a LHH in.
Nothing special, but had decent enough movement to be successful.
Used this pitch very well with his change and fastballs. Complimentary pitch.
Will have to get better to produce Ks at the next level.
CHANGE: Consistently 80-84, mixed one in at 76 with a hitter out in front
Seemed flat to me, but definitely was very deceptive.
Had armside run, more than his fastball so it is a great pitch combination with his slider.
MECHANICS: Simple. Fairly smooth. Gets on top of his front leg well like most Cardinal pitchers. Releases downhill well but not great. At times he seemed a little stiff in his hips but not bad at all. Starts in the middle, uses his rocker step to take him to the far left side of the rubber. Hands stay in good rhythm with his leg.
PICKOFFS: Average move for a RHP. Showed three moves. Stepped off the front on all. The slow move, a balk type move after he set, and a pick on the way up. His feet weren’t extremely fast but did a decent job holding runners. Mixed up his timing well.
FIELDING: Didn’t have anything hit right back to him except an Eric Hosmer bullet that he had no chance at. The stadium gun picked the ball up off the bat. 105 mph. He covered first base one time and got off the mound good but the ball skipped under the first basemen’s glove for a single.
ATTITUDE/POISE: Went right after hitters early in the ball game. Seemed confident early, then worked with his offspeed stuff and got everything working. Gave up some balls that were crushed early but the wind kept them in play so I never saw him deal with a lot of adversity. Kept cool with runners on.
NOTES: For the first three innings Broderick did not allow a hit. However, this is somewhat deceiving as the wind was blowing in fairly hard, and he gave up back to back shots in the first. Giavotella and Hosmer both hit the ball extremely hard into the deepest parts of the park. The wind changed around the fourth inning and the Naturals did not do anything with the ball to take advantage of the conditions. So Broderick does deserve some credit for this as he did a great job of settling in.
In the first inning Broderick featured nothing but his 4 seam and 2 seam fastballs. It was not until rehabbing Kansas City Royal Josh Fields led off the second inning did we see anything offspeed. The second time through the lineup Broderick was much more careful with Giavotella and Hosmer. Giavotella did not see a fastball in his AB and ran the count 3-2 before hitting a sharp ground out to third. The sequence was change up, change up, slider, change up, slider, slider. With two outs Hosmer was out in front on a change up but managed to sneak a single through the right side. Fields then ended the shutout with a solid line drive double into the left center field gap on a slider that was inside. The outfield defense had him shaded toward the line and centerfield was toward the RF gap allowing Hosmer to score from first.
Broderick again ran into trouble in the fifth getting a few pitches slightly up and giving up two singles. The Cardinal defense was extremely good for the most part but did let him down in the fifth allowing a runner to advance to second on a single. Broderick seemed to start tiring in the seventh as his change up started to creep up in the strike zone. However, the pitch still had enough deception on it to keep the Naturals off balance and no one hit it hard.
Broderick did a great job mixing his pitches as the game wore on. I thought he was a little heavy on the offspeed stuff in the fourth inning but it got him through what could have been a troublesome inning. I would like to see Broderick able to depend on his fastball more, but at the same time, he might not be able to as it isn’t going to blow any hitter away. Broderick gets by on his movement and ability to keep the ball down. Like most pitchers, Brian is going to have to keep his location strong in order to make it through games. He seems to be a classic Cardinal type pitcher with a sinker/slider type of makeup. A Duncan type of guy. At 6’ 6” he needs to do a little better job taking advantage of his height and long arms to drive the change up downhill and get a little more snap on the slider. But at this point, an ERA under 3.00 in the hitter strong Texas League and throwing a complete game allowing only five hits against a team with the lineup of the Naturals, well that’s pretty impressive no matter how you look at it. Broderick doesn’t have a high K/IP ratio, but he has a very impressive 4:1 K:BB ratio which shows that he will limit batters to hitting the ball. And allowing about a hit an inning in the Texas League? The stats don’t lie but they are only a snapshot into how you’ve performed in the past.
Broderick could become a serviceable major league pitcher and he is intriguing in the fast that he has a good build and good assortment of pitches. Is he going to be able to start? I don’t know but he can for Springfield. I can see him being a very good fifth starter or maybe even developing into a fourth starter. However, Broderick doesn’t have anything that’s over powering or above average. But he is a very good competitor and gets the job done. Guys like that seem to do okay for a few years. And at least make a decent career in the bullpen. He seems to have 3 major league average pitches, and could put that slider in a better category if he sharpens it up. He’s taken some giant steps forward this year and it’ll be interesting to watch this 21st Round pick out of Grand Canyon as he moves forward in his career. With a great pitching coach, a good sinker/slider/change combination, he could be good.