Joey Devine

Needs another pitch. That fastball thing he throws, that’s a good pitch, but it’s not that good. You can get by with one pitch if that one pitch is Mariano Rivera’s cut fastball. Otherwise, you need a changeup.

The Braves’ first round pick spent four games in Myrtle Beach, where he was clearly too good for the league (five innings, no hits, three walks, seven strikeouts) then went to Mississippi. He pitched well there, not spectacularly (except for a 28 strikeouts in 20 IP) and was promoted to the big club during the ongoing crisis. He gave up grand slams in his first two major league outings and was sent back to AAA. When he came back, he pitched well — and had stopped walking people — but then gave up the season-ending homer in the Division Series.

Control is an issue for Devine. Also, he’s a sidearmer and sidearmers are often troubled by lefthanded hitters. They were 3-7 with a homer against him, but that’s far too small of a sample size to judge anything. A number of people seem to think that Devine has the inside track for the closer job, but I don’t see it, not until he adds some other pitch he can get over. Maybe I’m wrong, but I’m just not optimistic.

Joey Devine – Baseball Statistics – Biography, Minor League Stats and Baseball Cards

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21 thoughts on “Joey Devine”

  1. Well, he is better that Reitsma for the closer spot. He pitched pretty well in the NLDS last year and as for the HR – it was MM park which is about 20 foot to the left wall.

  2. I thought he had a little bit of a slider but wasn’t throwing it because his injury kept him from opening his hips so it could be effective. Could be wrong about that, but if he can find that and get healthy, couldn’t he be the NL Huston Street?

    I do also think that there’s reason to be concerned with his ability to close games, especially when he was drafted with that in mind.

  3. It is diffiuclt to assess his ability to “close” games this early. I guess a good sign was that he did come back an improved player after the 2 back-to-back grand slammers and pitched well. I have high hopes for him (as you can tell) ….

  4. I have high hope for him as well, and I think that McDowell will be really good for him and the other young relievers that are coming through. I am cautiously optimistic that this years bullpen will develop into a really good one about halfway through the season. Now if Booby could just learn how to use it properly then everything would be gravy.

  5. Devine made his rep on a “frisbee” slider, which was hampered by his hip injury supposedly. His scouting report says he is a slider/fb pitcher, with a killer slider to right handers. To be a full time closer, he might need a changeup or curve against lefties..
    I like the kid..looked great in his debut inning.
    and Bobby is showing lot of faith in him, which is good. But then, Bobby trusted Gryboski too

  6. I saw him pitch maybe 40 times at NC State, and his control and stuff are much better than he showed last year; the injury was holding him back even when he was “healthy” for the playoffs–which he only was in press statements: it’s not like Atlanta really had any other palatable options for the postseason pen.

    He’s got a slider he uses like a changeup that I didn’t see much at all in Atlanta, and that’s what he uses to set up lefties for “that fastball thing.”

    His mental makeup is the best I’ve ever seen from a reliever his age, and if he’s given the role he’ll be ready for it.

  7. I should say, the changeup slider is different from the frisbee slider. Everything he throws is going to move a lot because of his motion, but the changeup breaks down a little more and also functions as his ground-ball pitch.

  8. I’m really rooting for Devine. He had several moments last year that would have sent me running into a cave for several eons. I felt just terrible for him when he gave up that dinky home run to end the NLDS. I hope he’s the solution to our “closer problem.”

    And did anyone see that Bill Belichick is going to be an ABC analyst during the Super Bowl? If he turns off that carefully cultured drone of his so I don’t fall asleep, this could be really good. I might actually learn something about football!

  9. Slightly off-topic but I was kinda hoping that Piazza would quit and become a full time broadcaster. Not sure if you heard him in the booth last year but he spoke eloquently and came across as very intelligent. He’d do better than playing catcher that’s for sure!

  10. I file Devine under “too early to tell.” Heck, I’d put nearly the entire bullpen in that category. When you have young guys with so few innings, it’s just hard to know much of anything. At least, for me to know anything in the way I like to evaluate pitchers. I think that’s the thing that scares me the most about the upcoming year. There are a lot of guys on the team without a consistent track-record in the majors or minors

  11. A substantial number of pitchers (throughout the ML camps) will be participating in the WBC during spring training.
    That should give an opportunity to a lot of young guys who will get extended auditions in their places. Who knows? There could be some surprises making staffs this year.

  12. I think totally you’re right, Mac. The last paragraph is satisfactory. Imho, rookies have two characteristics in common. Put courage to the test or Not!! Joey Devine is a collegian closer, compared to Houston Street and Chad Cordero, but his pitching scared me. Everyone thinks he is unlucky but it’s not true.
    I know he is a nice guy. That is not all. He is not our closer. Absolutely yes. If he’s a closer in the near future , plese must act demonstratively. Sorry to Joey..I can assume
    a strong attitude toward him. Don’t make me that way.

  13. “Absolutely yes–>Absolutely.” It is inconvenient not to have a delete key. I am full of howlers. always!!!!!!I’m sorry, Mac and everyone!!

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