What Colorado Rockies pitcher Franklin Morales might not know is that he makes a number of people uncomfortable when he pitches, not just the hitters from the opposing team.
As quoted in this morning’s Denver Post, here is what Morales had to say about his beautifully effective though occasionally adventurous outing against the San Francisco Giants in Colorado’s 2-1 victory Tuesday night:
I want to make the hitters uncomfortable. They need to figure out what I’m doing. But it’s everything together.”
Extracted from that quote, please observe the official, unofficial Franklin Morales Mission Statement:
I want to make hitters uncomfortable
Morales fidgets constantly, wipes his brow complusively, shakes his head, paces, and otherwise seems uncomfortable himself when he is pitching. That could be one way to make hitters uncomfortable.
Morales has great raw stuff. If you set aside his consistency issues for a moment and just consider his stuff, his plus-fastball and plus-slider as a left-handed pitcher make him a formidable foe for many teams. That could be another, most optimistic take on the way that Morales succeeds in making hitters uncomfortable.
Finally, Morales throws his pitches all over the place. And I do mean all over the place, in a distinct fashion that leaves all participants and observers unsure where any given delivery might end up.
Please observe the following graph from his outing against the Giants:
Especially myserious was Franklin’s slider, which took on many different forms. Sometimes it broke a lot, sometimes it broke a little. Sometimes it veered sharply downward, sometimes it floated from side to side. Sometimes it was up and sometimes it was down. But always it moved, whether it was fluttering or diving, and always it made the Giants hitters uncomfortable.
Please observe the graph below, paying attention to the green dots that represent his sliders on this night:
Franklin Morales is not always a winning pitcher. He does not always put the Rockies in a position to win. But on any given night, Morales is guaranteed to fulfill his mission statement.
Franklin Morales will make hitters uncomfortable.