I've suited up for about 180 games in the past 7 months, and pitched in about 65 of them, and finally this season has come to an end. Ironically the only game I started all year was the very last game. I wasn't able to be stretched much more than 60 pitches since I have been pitching out of the bullpen all year, so I could only get 4 innings in, but god it felt good to start.
After the first year of my life as strictly a relief pitcher I realize how much more I am cut out to be a starter rather than a reliever. I'm not saying I won't embrace a relief role as a pitcher, I will do my best with whatever any team I play with would like to use me as, there's no question there. Although for myself, growing up as a starter and going through high school, college and the past 3 years in Europe as a starter, it's just what I was molded to be.
I had a very sub par World Championships to my standards. I carried over my messed up mechanics and a slight lack of confidence from my minor league season into my first couple of outings resulting some shaky, don't know where the ball is going, innings. Finally, with the aid of my personal pitching coach ( my dad ) and some video comparisons of me pitching in the WBC and me pitching a couple weeks ago I realized the changes I needed to make, and that led to 2 runs and 9 k's over my last 7 innings at the WC. Bringing my arm slot back up to where I was before this year, and understanding and accepting that where I was at, and the bad habits I had got into on the mound throughout this season were getting me no where. I haven't thrown for 2 days now, and I already miss it, I miss throwing the ball, and being the go to guy out of the pen or in the rotation...which is why...
I'm really looking forward to getting back to a hardcore training program I will push myself through in the next 5 months, starting upon my return to Vancouver in a couple weeks. I plan on losing 20 pounds, and get as physically, mentally strong as I can be by the time spring training rolls around in late February.
Until that though, I am going to relax for a couple of weeks and enjoy my time here in Portales, New Mexico with Shorty. Forget about baseball (except for the playoffs on TV) but for the most part rest the body and have it ready for action once I get back home.