Current New York Mets manager Mickey Callaway and current Colorado Rockies reliever Bryan Shaw both came to the Cleveland Indians prior to the 2013 season. The duo was a part of one of the best stretches of Indians baseball in the franchise’s history, including an appearance in 2016 World Series.
As Cleveland’s pitching coach, Callaway saw Shaw appear in 378 games for the Indians during a five-year stretch. During that time, the right-hander posted an overall 3.11 ERA and a 1.188 WHIP. Those numbers were some of the reasons why Shaw signed a three-year contract in the offseason.
However, Shaw’s time in Denver has looked little like his years in an Indians uniform. Heading into Monday night’s series opener against the New York Mets at Coors Field, Shaw was 2-5 with a 7.08 ERA and a 1.864 WHIP. In eight games this month spanning seven innings, opponents are hitting .455 against Shaw.
As manager of the Mets, Callaway will stand in the opponent’s dugout this series as Shaw likely makes multiple appearances against his team (based on Bud Black’s past usage). Which Shaw will the Mets see? Callaway saw Shaw in early May as the Rockies swept a three-game series at Citi Field. During that series, Shaw pitched in two games, allowing just one hit and no runs in 1.2 innings of work.
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That was “good Shaw,” perhaps even vintage Cleveland version of Shaw. However, Shaw is struggling as Callaway brings his Mets to the Mountain time zone.
So what is Callaway seeing from Shaw? It seems to be mostly an issue with location, something that both Shaw and Black have stated in the past.
"“Looking at his stuff, his stuff is the same,” Callaway said when I asked him about Shaw. “Velo (velocity) is there. The cut on the fastball is there. I’d have to have to dig a lot deeper with him.”"
Callaway won’t be doing the Rockies any favors and trying to figure out Shaw’s current issues while in Denver. If Shaw’s struggles last until the Mets leave town, Callaway won’t shed any tears. However, the Rockies bullpen could greatly benefit from Shaw rediscovering his mojo with his former pitching coach watching on from the other dugout.