Included in the list of young starting pitchers who figure to help the Los Angeles Angels rotation in the immediate future is Sam Bachman, a young power arm who early on in his big league career has dealt with multiple injuries.
But after a positive offseason, the 23-year-old is prepared to take another step forward.
Drafted in the first round of the 2019 Major League Baseball Draft out of Miami (OH), Bachman joined the Angels for big league Spring Training, tossing a flawless inning in his debut on Feb. 26. His outing against the White Sox was special on a few fronts, he collected three punchouts, and did so on just nine pitches.
The results provided Bachman with some needed validation after the setbacks which forced him to slow down as a rising young arm, via Sam Blum of The Athletic:
“It’s just a competition with myself. I always want to be the hardest thrower,” Bachman said Friday. “That’s how I was in college. I like to work hard. It’s something that, when you are stronger and use your body correctly, those higher velos do push you. So it is a little frustrating. But it is what it is.”
The Angels No. 6 prospect posted a 3.92 ERA with the Rocket City Trash Pandas in Double-A last season, but in his last start of the year he noticed something wasn’t right:
“Thankfully it wasn’t an arm. We’re talking about a back,” Angels manager Phil Nevin said. “And nobody likes to hear anything with any part of your body. But the fact is he pitched through some things last year, too, and probably learned a lot about his body. I saw him pitch in the instructional league in November. I saw his pens in January and the first part of the spring. And it’s electric.”
He isn’t needed quite yet at the Major League level because of the Angels’ good fortune with a decent stash of MLB arms, which will allow Bachman to take his time in honing in on the minuet details he’ll need:
“I’m just getting back to my routine,” Bachman said. “Getting back to what’s helped me in the past, and it seemed to put me in a better spot this year. I’m feeling good, that’s the most important thing. Just being healthy.”
The Angels remain confident he projects as a front-of-the-line starting pitcher, and because of his strike-throwing ability and 70-grade fastball, there isn’t much reason why he couldn’t fit the bill.
Angels pitchers testing PitchCom to call own games
Each team is adjusting differently, and the Angels are among the teams working PitchCom into their adjustments to the pitch timer.
PitchCom technology has sped up baseball and allowed teams to focus on the next pitch and not the sign-stealing element. The 12+ button keypad equips both the pitcher and catcher to communicate without the threat of flashing decodable hand signals.
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