Ryan Webb was far less effective than I'd hoped. (Admittedly, I was ready to name him our next closer back in January ) He's a ground ball pitcher and pitched often without the benefit of our gold glovers in the field, but it looked too easy for the opposing hitters to hit the ball hard "where they ain't," as well as inducing far more fly balls than I'd expected to see.
Evan Meek looked like the real deal every time, but I have to temper that by noting who he was facing (if I remember right) every time he went out. I believe they were trying to assess his ability to handle close-game, 9th-inning situations, and he did so brilliantly. But in ST games, the 9th inning guys are almost always third tier hitters.
Zach Britton was far more impressive, confident, aggressively effective than I would ever have guessed he was going to be.
Brad Brach was meh to me.
Kelvin de la Cruz was someone I had no expectations of, hadn't even heard of him, and he had an aggressive confidence that was really what you'd hope for a setup guy, I think. Big, strong, imposing pitcher. I'd have to assume he looks fairly intimidating to batters.
Eduardo Rodriguez looked overmatched, very disappointing to me. His body had filled out a lot more than I recalled, but he's still pretty young. I still had high hopes because of his Arizona Fall League championship game, where he looked so strong. I'd have to check this, but I think he was always coupled with one of the backup catchers, and being so young, he may not have had good pitch selection for his outings. I've no doubt that he will continue to develop to be the quality starter we've been hoping for. Just didn't look so great in the ST outings I saw.
Eddie Gamboa had a lot more success with his knuckleball-fastball combination than I expected at this point. I was very disappointed that he was sent down so early until I heard that Niekro was coming to Twin Lakes last week to work with him some more. I genuinely expect to see him at the major league level sometime this season. He looked that good to me, really kept the hitters off balance.
Additon and Alderson were awful. No command or control, velocity was unremarkable. Only saw them once. Perhaps they can bring us some success at AAA to make it easier to move the other guys up when needed.
I don't know what to say about Mike Wright. The times I saw him were just scratch-your-head where he looked like he was locating well and then bam would give up a solid hit. I didn't know what to take from his outings.
Finally, Brock Huntzinger. The first two times I saw him, he looked so in control, able to pitch very efficiently. The third time, he looked a bit like they'd caught up to him. Specifics about his delivery and such, however, didn't stick with me, so take my judgment of him with a grain or two of salt.
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Lifelong. Down by the river.
Lifelong. Down by the river.