Alex Cobb's debut with the Baltimore Orioles was very poor, as he allowed seven earned runs in 3.2 innings pitched. This is what went wrong.
Alex Cobb's debut with the Baltimore Orioles was less than ideal. He finished the game allowing 10 hits, seven earned runs, scoring one, and striking out at 3.2 innings pitched. This is far from the start that the Orioles fans expected from their latest acquisition, and it's pretty clear what went wrong.
This was Cobb's first start of the year after spending time in the minor league system of the Baltimore Orioles to build his arm strength after signing with the Orioles later in the offseason, and I saw oxidized at best.
It is important to remember that Cobb has had significant success in the MLB before, throwing to 2.76 ERA in 2013 and 2.87 ERA in 2014, both with Tampa Bay Rays, before undergoing Tommy John surgery.
He returned last year with the Rays and had a pretty solid year, throwing at 3.66 ERA, although his 4.16 FIP and 4.48 SIERA, also as a reduced strikeout rate of 17.3% (compared to 21, 9% in 2014), all the red flags indicated that part of their success last year could have been a bit lucky.
Cobb never had an overwhelming fastball, but it worked well enough to establish his breakthrough shots, which have been excellent in the past. Specifically, its division change has been an impressive launch in the past, generating a 21.2 pVAL, an index of 18.8% and a persecution rate of 53.1% in 2014.
Next, we show you how good it looked in the past:
However, last year, Cobb began to launch his division change less and chose to start throwing his curve more. Their division change was a significantly less effective release than in the past, with -4.8 pVAL, 11.5% whiff rate and 40.8% tracking speed. However, his curveball improved a lot, with a 6.9 pVAL (it was -0.3 in 2014).
So the key to Cobb's success is breaking balls, and he did not have any of that in his debut against the Boston Red. Sox. The movement was poor, and the control was worse, which led to some easy shots to hit, like this line change crushed to Hanley Ramirez that ended like a homer:
 There was also this curve ball that Cobb threw that did not have the movement he needed and was thrown in the exact wrong place to end like a home run by JD Martínez:
His control was everywhere as well. Here, Chance Sisco prepares for a curve in the outer corner, and Cobb ends up throwing it to the ground floor and in:
Or this line that was supposed to be low and in but ended in the almost opposite place:
It was not all bad. Cobb had some shots that looked solid, with a good movement and a good location, like this curve that was placed right where Sisco wanted him on the outside corner:
And this curve that was He broke all the way through the plate, cheating Hanley Ramirez:
This is Cobb's first start of the year, so I'm not in a panic yet, but I'm somewhat worried about what I saw their breakthrough releases. He hoped that his division change began to return to form, and it seems that it is not.
In fact, it seems that Cobb is going to use the same strategy as last year: more curves and more less division changes.
If he can repeat the success he had last year, that would be incredible, but I do not think he can do it. repeating what he did last year. The peripherals do not admit that it is repeatable, and if it does not improve its control and its division change, I worry about its possible success.