Developing: Emotions Regarding Matt Shoemaker

Shoemaker 1 Slow

The present author is known in some (very small) circles as the sort of person who takes pleasure, first, in identifying and then, second, celebrating with undue enthusiasm the virtues of marginalized but promising talents.

In recent years, there have been peans written to such personages as Colby Lewis and Charlie Blackmon and, most recently, entirely laconic — and also now very successful — Cleveland right-hander Corey Kluber.

I am aware that the cultivation of these infatuations might seem affected. Indeed, there does appear to be a some notable qualities shared by the above-named baseballers, insofar as they all (a) are older than a player ought to be before demonstrating major-league success but also (b) produced promising sabermetric-type numbers before their actual, real success and also (c) possess a given name that begins with the letter C.

It’s up to the reader to believe me that, when I confess to some interest in these players, it’s a real thing inside of me — and that, if there’s a foolish consistency to the type of player I’ve chosen to celebrate, it’s because there’s a hobgoblin in my little mind.

What I want to say on Monday, June 23rd, in 2014 is that there is quite possibly another such fascination developing inside of me — in this case, towards the direction of Anaheim right-hander Matt Shoemaker.

Shoemaker’s profile, one notes, more or less matches the criteria invoked above. He’s rather old (27) for a pitcher who entered the season having recorded only 5.0 career innings. After his entirely competent performance on Sunday against the Rangers (box), he’s produced fielding-independent numbers (like a 78 xFIP-, for example) which suggest that he has the capacity to prevent runs. And what he lacks in a name that begins with C, he has made up for with a fantastic split-changeup.

Were the author not presently at a bar with a decidedly below-average internet connection, he would reproduce here a number of those split-changeups in GIF form. In lieu of that, he’s merely recycled one that appeared at the site yesterday — a not entirely unfortunate sequence of events, that, given the importance of recycling to our environment.

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Carson Cistulli has just published a book of aphorisms called Spirited Ejaculations of a New Enthusiast.

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“Were the author not presently at a bar with a decidedly below-average internet connection…. ”

Why did you leave her name out? :)

John Elway