Arrieta will work on improving game speed
There were times Orioles starter Jake Arrieta looked really good, and there were times on Saturday when he struggled to execute and was slow from the stretch.
“Stuff -wise he was in pretty good shape,” manager Buck Showalter said of Arrieta who was charged with four runs on four hits and two walks in 4 1/3 innings. “He’s going to have to increase his tempo from the stretch. [It's] something he got a lot better at last year. But what happens a lot of time, they come in here [in camp] and they are working so much on just pitching.”
Arrieta said it’s something he will focus on this upcoming week and is confident he can minimize the jump that baserunners are getting on first base. The Phillies had two stolen bases when Arrieta was on the mound.
“We’ve seen he’s capable of doing it,” Showalter said of Arrieta speeding up that part of his game. “He’s a real athletic young man. He will get better at it. It shouldn’t be where we have to give a sign that says be quicker to the plate.”
Arrieta walked the first two batters in the fifth and exited one out later. He was charged with four runs, although two of those runs came after on Shane Victorino’s homer off reliever Clay Rapada. Arrieta threw 48 of 79 pitches for strikes on Saturday and was most unhappy about John Mayberry Jr’s second-inning home run.
“I did a really poor job of execution there,” Arrieta said. “[I] pulled a lot of pitches out of the zone, didn’t throw a breaking ball for a strike and ended up having to throw him a fastball that caught too much of the plate. He put a good swing on it. Other than that, the two walks in the fifth, You just can’t walk the eight and nine hitters. You can’t do it, but that’s something I am not too worried about. I know that my command has gotten a lot better and I have been really able situations like that for the most part.
Take those three things out and I think there are a lot of positives in there.”