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Joe Nathan / RHP / closer

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Nathan is a hard thrower from upstate New York. His fastball sits in the mid-90s and is unhittable at times. Nathan uses a tight slider that dives under bats. His third pitch is a hard 12-6 curveball. Nathan used to throw an occasional changeup, and may still mix that in. With this repertoire, Joe has put together a string of six incredibly dominant years in a row. 6/3/09 CSJ

*fastball(92-96), slider(87-90), curve(82-84), changeup


Jon Rauch / RHP / reliever

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Rauch still has his full four-pitch starter's repertoire, even though he has been pitching out of the bullpen for years. He has an average fastball in the 88 to 91 MPH range that he commands well. He'll use a tight slider to both RHs and LHs as his clear second pitch. Rauch uses both a 12 to 6 curveball and a hard changeup.

Rauch was Baseball America's minor league player of the year in 2000, and started his major league career by being the starting pitcher against which Mike Cameron began his four home run game. He has since made himself into one of the more reliable relief pitchers in baseball. 5/26/10 CSJ

*fastball(88-94), slider(80-84), curve(72-77), change(83-88), cutter(86-88)

Matt Guerrier / RHP / reliever

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Guerrier relies heavily on his breaking stuff. He has a slider that gets a ton of movement in the mid 80s and a big curve in the upper 70s. His fastball is anywhere from 89 to 95 MPH with decent sinking action. A rare changeup rounds out the repertoire of this born and bred Ohioan. 5/26/10 CSJ

*fastball(89-95), slider(84-87), curve(77-81), changeup(82-85)

Jesse Crain / RHP / reliever

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Crain has survived some injuries, but always comes back with the same great stuff. His Canadian fastball explodes on hitters and his curveball breaks down and hard. Crain's third pitch is a very tight slider that can touch 90 mph. 6/3/09 CSJ

*fastball(92-96), curve(74-78), slider(84-86)

Matt Capps / RHP / closer

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Capps is a strike throwing machine. He can locate his mid 90s fastball well, setting up his razorblade slider and sinking changeup.

Matt's career blossomed when the Pirates converted him from a below average A ball starter, to an effective late-inning reliever. 9/6/10 CSJ

*fastball(92-96), slider(84-87), changeup(88-89)

Carl Pavano / RHP / starter

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Pavano is an amazing example of what two years of mildly successful pitching will get you; a big contract and extra chances to comeback from injury and ineffectiveness. He deals a very hittable fastball that sits around 90 mph nowadays. His slider is neither sharp, nor sweeping, and his changeup looks pitiful. He still deals the occasional splitter as well.

2010 was an amazing season for Pavano. Despite throwing a pedestrian looking repertoire, he pitched well all year for the Twins, and showed amazing durability.

However good or bad he appears, he will always be a favorite of mine for pitching well against the Yankees in the 2003 WS, then being awful while pitching for them. 10/7/10 CSJ

*fastball(86-90), changeup(77-82), slider(77-82), splitter(79-83)

Nick Blackburn / RHP / starter

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Blackburn throws a good sinking 2-seamer and a straight changeup. As his career has progressed, he is using more and more changeups against both LHs and RHs. For breaking balls, he works with a slow curve and a tight cutter. Blackburn can also crank up his Oklahoman 4-seamer to 95 mph. Nick allows lots of basehits, but limits the damage by posting extremely low walk totals. Blackburn was born in the same town (Ada, Oklahoma) as NFL tight end Jeremy Shockey. 9/6/10 CSJ

*fastball(88-95), changeup(80-83), cutter( 85-90), curve(78-82)

Francisco Liriano / LHP / starter

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Liriano was simply filthy before TJ surgery. He threw 95 mph consistently with a sharp slider that could touch 90. Returning from surgery in '08 and '09, Liriano was touching 94 if he was lucky, and his slider had flattened out terribly. It took over two years for him recover, and he is finally pitching well again in 2010. Francisco has rediscovered his biting slider, and is back-ankling it to RHs consistently. Francisco also deals a solid changeup, a pitch that can be effective at any velocity. The Dominican lefthander has become ace of the Twins once again. 10/4/10 CSJ

*fastball(91-95), slider(82-89), changeup(83-86)

Kevin Slowey / RHP / starter

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Slowey mixes a moving 2-seamer with two breaking pitches. He rarely touches 90 mph, but he pounds the corners of the plate with his fastball. Slowey is using his curveball more often in 2009, since his slider appears to have flattened out. Slowey also shows a sinking changeup as his fourth pitch. Kevin pitched collegiately for Winthrop University. 6/9/09 CSJ

*fastball(85-90), curve(72-75), slider(83-85), changeup(80-82)

Jose Mijares / LHP / setup reliever

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Mijares reminds me of a young JC Romero. He's a tough Venezuelan lefthander that throws a good fastball and sweeping slider. Mijares had some command problems in the minor leagues, but seems to have fixed those. 6/3/09 CSJ

*fastball(90-95), slider(80-83), changeup(82-85)

Glen Perkins / LHP / starter

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Perkins is a Minnesota guy. He went to high school and college in Minnesota, becoming a 1st round draft pick of the Twins. His pitching motion is free and easy, producing a low-90s lefthanded fastball. He uses a sweeping slider and a straight changeup as secondary pitches. He'll use these two pitches in typical fashion, that is slider to LHs and changeup to RHs. He has shown that he'll mix this strategy up once or twice a game though. Earlier in the season, Perkins showed a slower breaking ball in the 70s, but I didn't see one in his 8/11 start. 8/15/08 CSJ

*fastball(88-93), slider(81-85), changeup(79-85), curve(75-77)


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