The folks at InsideTheRockies.com have put up a phenomenal piece chronicling Tyler Matzek‘s return to Low-A Asheville following nearly a month long return to California to work with his youth pitching coach Lon Fullmer, and return to the hybrid version of the Dr. Mike Marshall pitching style that he had grown up with. See below for the differences in Matzek’s delivery between high school in 2009 and now as a pro in 2011. The pitching techniques taught by Dr. Marshall, the 1974 National League Cy Young Award Winner and a Ph.D. in Kinesiology, are all but blackballed by major and minor league pitching coaches. Among the drills that are part of the program is pitching with 20 pound wrist weights and using an iron ball (see video below). The Inside the Rockies article goes in-depth with Fullmer who describes returning Matzek to the style of pitching he grew up with. The drastic action of sending Matzek home came about after the lefty got off to a 0-5 start with an ERA of 10.71, and 61 walks in 42 combined innings between High-A Modesto and Low-A Asheville. It will be interesting to see what kind of a difference the change in approach makes for Matzek, who was the 11th overall pick in the 2009 draft. Again the Inside the Rockies piece is a must read.
Matzek set to start for Asheville on Wednesday — InsideTheRockies.com
UPDATE: Matzek went 4IP, 0ER, 2H, 5BB, 6K in his return to Asheville on Wednesday.
UPDATE #2: Matzek went 5IP, 2ER, 4H, 3BB, 8K, WIN in his second start back.
Tyler Matzek throwing for Capistrano Valley High School in 2009:
Tyler Matzek throwing for High-A Modesto on April 30th:
Mike Marshall wrist weight & iron ball pitching drills:
Mike Marshall breaks down his pitching motion: