Last year, Eric pointed you to a video of switch-pitcher Pat Venditte facing switch-hitter Ralph Henriquez. The match-up was a sensation and led to “The Pat Venditte rule”, as the Professional Baseball Umpries Corporation issued an official ruling on how such situations should be handled going forward.
Needless to say, Venditte has gotten significantly more recognition than most 20th round picks. However, with the way he’s pitched as a professional, he’s giving people reason to think that he might be more than a circus sideshow.
Last year, Venditte threw 32 2/3 innings, walked 10, struck out 42, and allowed just two home runs. His FIP was 2.34 – however, an older pitcher with college experience should be able to pitch well out of the bullpen in short-season ball, so he needed to continue to prove himself as a professional. So far, so good – his first four innings in full season ball have resulted in just two hits, no walks, and six strikeouts.
At some point, the Yankees are going to have to decide that he’s too good for the low minors and find out if his stuff can play at higher levels. Scouts continue to question his ability to get good hitters out with below average stuff, but his ability to always have the platoon advantage covers a multitude of sins. It’d be great for baseball if Venditte could prove that he had the chops to make it in the big show, so let’s hope the Yankees move him up this year and let the experiment get a real test.
After all, who doesn’t want a switch-pitcher to succeed?
Print This Post