Sports

Bullpen

Earl Weaver, the great Baltimore Orioles baseball manager, once said, “Nobody likes to hear it, because it’s dull, but the reason you win or lose is darn near always the same — pitching.”

 

Earl Weaver, the great Baltimore Orioles baseball manager, once said, “Nobody likes to hear it, because it’s dull, but the reason you win or lose is darn near always the same — pitching.” What is the key to effective pitching — speed, control, trickery, fear, chutzpah? Or is it simply perfecting a single pitch that’s almost unhittable? One reason the 2015 Lions baseball team has been tabbed as a power in the West Coast Conference is its pitching strength. Two starters, for example, were drafted by Major League Baseball teams in 2014 — Colin Welmon (Pittsburgh Pirates) and Trevor Megill (St. Louis Cardinals). In all three seasons of Dan Ricabal’s tenure as LMU pitching coach, the combined staff ERA has finished in the top 10 in Lion baseball history. We asked six LMU throwers to tell us about their strongest pitches. It’s anything but dull.

 


COLIN WELMON
Class: Senior
Hometown: Tustin, California
Height: 6’3″
Weight: 195 lbs.
Position: RHP
“My cutter is like a modified slider: It breaks a little bit to the left, and it isn’t quite as fast as my fastball. I worked on it with Coach Jason Gill and Ricky Romero, of the Toronto Blue Jays.”

 


MICHAEL SILVA
Class: Junior
Hometown: Valencia, California
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 210 lbs.
Position: RHP
“I think my four-seam fastball is successful because of our pitching philosophy: rhythm, balance, direction, distance and with conviction. I follow those principles, and it ultimately leads to success. I have to thank my pitching coach, Dan Ricabal, for that.”

 


J.D. BUSFIELD
Class: Sophomore
Hometown: Valencia, California
Height: 6’7″
Weight: 215 lbs.
Position: RHP
“My slider looks like a fastball coming out of my hand, but it breaks late and ends up out of the strike zone. Depending on how I throw it, the pitch is loopy and breaks more, or it breaks hard.”

 


BRENTON ARRIAGA
Class: Sophomore
Hometown:
Rancho Cucamonga, California
Height: 6’5″
Weight: 210 lbs.
Position: LHP”The change-up is one of the hardest pitches to hit because batters can’t replicate it in a practice setting with a machine or even a coach throwing from 40 feet away. The key is to not try to do too much with it.”

 


TREVOR MEGILL
Class: Junior
Hometown: Huntington Beach, California
Height: 6’8″
Weight: 245 lbs.
Position: RHP
“Because of my height, the angle of my two-seam fastball coming down at batters is unusual — it’s one more thing the batter has to worry about. Whether the fastball is my out pitch depends on its accuracy that day.”

 


TYLER COHEN
Class: Sophomore
Hometown: Woodland Hills, California
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 195 lbs.
Position: RHP
“My curveball is my out pitch, and it’s more effective against right-handers because it breaks late away from them. If my curveball could resemble anyone else’s, I’d want it to break like Clayton Kershaw’s.”

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