Mark Lowe’s Inconsistent Outing | The Process Report

Mark Lowe’s Inconsistent Outing

A few observations from this afternoon’s tilt with the Orioles.

  • The Rays had a bullpen game, starting Mark Lowe and using five others—including Jake McGee—to cover nine innings.
  • Lowe, who remains in contention for a spot in the Opening Day bullpen, pitched well in the first inning. His fastball featured some life while sitting in the low-to-mid-90s, and for the most part was located down in the zone. The run he allowed stemmed from happenstance, as Adam Jones reached base on a botched routine grounder, stole two bases on one attempt against a shifted infield, and then scored on a single hit through the shift.
  • Had Lowe’s day ended after the first inning, there would be nothing negative to write about him. Instead he authored a sloppy second inning. Lowe’s command wavered and the Orioles (fielding most of a regular-season lineup) made solid contact, placing runners on second and third with nobody out. To the veteran right-hander’s credit, he escaped without allowing a run by fanning Ryan Flahery and coercing a pop-up from Alexi Casilla. The final out of the frame was a screamer silenced by third baseman Cole Figueroa. It should be noted that during the regular season, Lowe would not pitch multiple innings too often.
  • One of the pitchers Lowe is battling with, Josh Lueke, pitched a clean fourth inning. He showed off new mechanics, which include an accelerated tempo and truncated leg lift, and leaned on his upper-70s curveball with vertical action. Lueke threw the breaker within the zone for the most part, but coerced a swinging strike three when he used the offering as a chase pitch.
  • Juan Sandoval is not in contention to make the roster—not now, and perhaps not ever—but he’s dropped his arm slot to the side this spring. In barely related news, former Rays reliever Adam Russell has also taken to side-arming while in camp with the Diamondbacks.
  • Outfielder Kes Carter drew a tough walk against Tommy Hunter.
  • Matt Lollis, perhaps the least talked about piece of the Logan Forsythe trade, recorded the game’s final out in an inefficient manner. All looked well early on, as he got ahead 0-2 on two pitches. But Lollis went on to walk the batter on eight pitches, then fell behind the next man 3-1. He allowed an RBI single to right field before forcing a game-ending groundout. Lollis is, as advertised, an abnormally large human being.
  • As for the Orioles, Suk-Min Yoon made his second appearance of the spring. His velocity is subpar from the right side, and he has to prove he can work through five or six innings without falling into the mid-to-upper-80s before anyone will take him seriously. Still, he mixed pitches and locations and—in a short burst, at least—looked like a passable command-and-control righty. Given his late start to the spring, it’s unclear if Yoon has a chance to break camp with Baltimore (Ed: He was optioned to Triple-A after the game.)  The Rays should see him at some point this year, however.

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