Biddle Baffles “Bears”; August 6, 2014

A clean-shaven Jesse Biddle made his 2014 Threshers’ debut tonight against the Daytona Cubs. The young lefty had only pitched 2 GCL innings since his last start for Reading on June 23rd. He came into the game with a 5-inning limit.

Biddle looked very good in his protracted outing. He needed only 64 pitches while no-hitting the Cubs through his 5 innings. He had a 45/19 ball-to-strike ratio. His line –

  • 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K

More Biddle facts –

  • He threw 14 pitches in the first inning, 11 of 12 strikes after starting with 2 balls.
  • the first batter saw only fast balls and struck out in an 8-pitch at bat.
  • His fastball was 92-93 mph.
  • He threw a knee-buckling 75 mph curve on an 0-2 pitch to strike out the 2nd batter.
  • He ran four 3-ball counts.
  • The one walk came on a pitch everybody thought was strike three except the ump.
  • He ran one other deep count 2-2 and it resulted in a strike out
  • After the walk, he struck out the next batter on 3 pitches.
  • On 2 occasions he walked off the back of the mound and composed himself during at bats, both with positive results.
  • Of his 45 strikes – 7 swinging, 13 called, 15 fouls, 10 in play
  • Of the 10 in play – 5 ground balls (2 back to Biddle), 2 pop ups, and 3 easy fly balls, although Herlis Rodriguez had a long run to catch one along the left field foul line.
  • Of his 5 strike outs, 3 swinging, 2 called.
  • After one-hopping the throw to first on the first of his 2 chances, Biddle ran the second chance halfway to the bag before tossing underhand to Art Charles.
  • When he missed, he only missed close a handful of times. Curves generally missed in the dirt, fast balls high.
  • He faced 16 batters.
  • He threw 12 first-pitch strikes.
  • He recorded 4 one-pitch at bats.
  • He threw 34 pitches in the 5 at bats where he ran 2- or 3-ball counts.
  • And, 30 pitches (25 for strikes) in the other 11 at bats.
  • He left with a 4-0 lead and a no-hitter.

Biddle looked good, but the Cubs came into this series with a 30-plus inning scoreless streak. And it is A-ball. Let’s enjoy the positive outing, and see what happens next time out.

Biddle got the win when Lino Martinez and Ulises Joaquin combined to two-hit the Cubs over the final 4 innings.

The Threshers picked up their first run on a Brandon Short home run in the second inning. They added three more in the fourth inning. J.P. Crawford led off with a single. Brian Pointer worked a one-out walk and both runners advanced on an errant pick off throw at second base by the pitcher. Crawford later scored on a wild pitch. Art Charles completed the scoring with a mammoth 2-run home run to right.

The four runs turned out to be enough for the bull pen tonight.

Miscellany –

  • Crawford made several nice plays.
  • He raced into shallow left to make a sprawling, over the shoulder catch in the eighth inning to preserve the no-hitter at the time.
  • He made a strong throw on a 4-6-3 double play in the seventh inning.
  • He made an even stronger throw on another 4-6-3 attempt that the runner just beat. The ball was hit slowly up the middle and Angelo Mora had a lot of ground to cover before flipping the ball to Crawford. Close play, but correct call.
  • Herlis Rodriguez was thrown out at home on a double steal attempt, a play that would have been Crawford’s successful steal of second.
  • The no hitter was broken on a soft liner just over Mora.
  • Roman Quinn’s 20-game on base streak came to an end.
  • The Cubs pitchers were equally effective, holding the Threshers to 4 hits.
  • Joaquin did not allow 2 inherited runners to score and was rewarded with the save.

Banner day for a lot of pitchers in the organization. Hector Neris recorded first professional win after midnight last night. Biddle gets first Threshers’ win this season. Aaron gets first AA win for Reading. Keys raises record to 2-1 in GCL picking up win in “relief” of B.J. Rosenberg. Anderson Nunez picks up first win in second start for DSL Phils. And, David Buchanan pushes his Phillies record over .500 to 6-5 with a win over the Astros.

22 thoughts on “Biddle Baffles “Bears”; August 6, 2014

  1. I was very happy to see how well he through and that Nola pitched pretty good as well. Hopefully Biddle can join him at Reading and get in a couple good starts there before the season ends. Really happy for both of these kids! Also have been very impressed with Nola in his interviews. He seems very mature and poised in front of the camera. Nice to see he appears to have a good personality and is intelligent. Seems like the kid of kid you would want in your club house.

    1. I think the plan is to let him finish out down here in Clearwater, which isn’t a bad plan. It won’t prevent him from starting for LHV or Reading next year.

  2. Thanks for the report. Well done. It’s been a tough year to be a Phillies fan so I’ll take any god news. Encouraging starts for Biddle and Nola. Not getting too excited but hopefully both build from here and finish the season on a high note.

  3. Great report. I know it’s only 1 outing but it looks like Biddle still has the stuff. His fastball was where it usually sits and still has a dominant curve. It seems to be mostly upstairs with him. I’m guessing he finished out in Reading his last few starts. Hopefully, he pitched good and is in AAA next year. Not sure what a 3rd year of Reading will do.

  4. Did he throw any sliders or change-ups? Or just fastballs and curve balls?

    1. Yes. I went upstairs after the first inning so I don’t know exactly what he threw in the 2nd thru 5th innings. But, in the first inning, he threw 14 pitches – 11 fastballs at 92-93 mph, the 1 curve at 75 mph, and 2 83mph pitches that I assume were sliders. The sequence went like this –
      92 ball high
      92 ball outside
      92 called strike
      92 foul
      93 foul
      93 ball high
      93 foul
      92 swinging strike – one out
      92 called strike
      83 called strike
      93 foul
      83 foul
      75 called strike – two out
      92 pop up to Crawford – three out

  5. Yesterday I stated that we should have low expectations for Biddle in his first time out. To not hype it too much. Well, he proved me wrong. And I am extremely happy to see it!

    I have been down on Jessie for 2 seasons now, but this game impressed me. Not because he blew through a weak hitting A ball team. But I am impressed by his mental strength that he showed. I know he wanted to throw a no hitter and I know he wanted to not walk anyone. But wanting and doing are two different things. Yes, he had one walk, but still, very impressive. He seemed to attack guys and feed off a FB that had good speed.

    Well done young man. Keep it up…Lord knows we need you!

    1. Looks like the six week lay-off may have served him well.
      Maybe he will now proceed onto his ultimate goal.

    2. I don’t think we could have asked for a better outcome. It looks like he used the time productively (not only with mental adjustments but perhaps he refined his pitching too) and I’m glad to see that they kept him stretched out so that, when he came back, he could make legitimate starts.

      From everything I know and have seen, Biddle is a great kid and he certainly has a lot of ability. As I’ve explained to folks on the site before, his curveball is, in my view, a potentially elite pitch – true knee buckler. If he can keep his FB in the low 90s, touching the mid 90s with good command and he can develop one more “show me” pitch (the change? cutter?), he has a very high upside – at least mid-rotation upside.

      More than anything, I’m happy for him because he’s a hard-working, humble kid with a good attitude and his dream is not just to pitch in the major league, but to pitch for the Phillies. You have to like that.

    3. I agree with having reasonable expectations for both Biddle and Nola. Both exceeded mine last night. And reasonably, a more patient team might have brought about a less stellar yet reasonable result for Biddle.

  6. The time that he spent in Clearwater with Hallady, who went through something similar in his own career, may prove to be a turning point in his career.

  7. There is still a lot a good bit of developing for Nola and Biddle before they can contribute to the big club. Biddle obviously must continue to stay mentally sharp and pitch well at AA and maybe AAA next season. While one or both of these guys may not live up to expectations, it is hard not to be excited for the potential of Nola and Biddle solidifying the middle of our rotation in the future. Nice to see some good arms starting to arrive at the upper levels of our system.

    1. Good article, nice to see that he is excited to be back out there. Glad to hear he wants to get the ball every fifth day and wants to pitch well to finish the season strong. Hopefully he can do just that and have a positive outlook for next season.

  8. Thanks Jim. You watched Biddle pitch last year I’m sure. Did he look different in any way last night? Another outstanding start and everyone will feel much better about our system.

  9. He was here in 2012. I can’t remember anything that would make me think he looked different. But, he didn’t look like he was down about being in Clearwater rather than Reading.

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