Phils' rookie defies scouting report
I missed Mazzaro -- and frankly, despite pitching a short shutout he wasn't all that impressive, which has been sort of a hallmark of Athletic hurlers this season -- but I did watch Bastardo's outing, and he was a surprise, both to me and to the Padres TV broadcasters, as we all were led to believe that Bastardo is sort of a finesse pitcher. From Baseball America's 2009 Prospect Handbook (which lists the small left-hander as the Phillies' No. 11 prospect):
- Bastardo has made such rapid progress due to the deception and command he had of his average repertoire. His fastball sits at 87-91 mph and tops out at 93. It gets on top of hitters quickly and has some cut action. He pitches inside, but he's not overly physical or a power pitcher.
What's most likely is that Bastardo's fastball was fueled by adrenaline (and perhaps a bit of physical maturity), and that he'll not spend much time this summer throwing in the mid-90s. Whether he's really the reliable No. 5 starter who might keep the Phillies in first place, no one can rightly say. This was just Bastardo's third start above Class AA. But he'll always have this grand debut.