TPR11 Excerpt: The Jim Hickey Effect by Bradley Woodrum | The Process Report

TPR11 Excerpt: The Jim Hickey Effect by Bradley Woodrum

We’re going to produce three chapter excerpts today and tomorrow to finish the series up.

The man’s Texas-sized proclamation likely made little impact on the Red Sox and Yankees. In their clubhouses, as they scraped the remainders of past Devil Rays seasons from between their cleats, hearing news of a revised pitching strategy in Tampa would no doubt have birthed cheers: Tampa wants to attack the strike zone more? At most, a few Yanks and Sox began practicing their home run trots and bat flips.

Tampa Bay’s strike zone had long been property of the Northeast. From about 2000 until the moment Hickey said, “Let’s throw more strikes,” the Devil Rays had – on average – surrendered 870 runs per season. By contrast, in over 100 years of team history, the Yankees have only allowed more than 800 runs 5 times. In 2007, under Hickey’s crafty new plan of charging the front gate, the Devil Rays set a franchise record, nearly allowing 1,000 runs.

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