"I don’t feel like myself out there pitching right now,” he acknowledged. “Mentally, I feel good, I’m throwing pitches with conviction, physically my mechanics are just a little out of whack and not in sync.”
Still, at a time when he has struggled to repeat his mechanics (thus resulting in command woes), Bard said that he can take satisfaction in a performance like the one he submitted on Wednesday, given that he worked through his difficulties and gave his team a chance to win.
“I don’t care [about strikeouts and walks] right now. I know that, when I get right and I get my mechanics where I’m supposed to be and I’m getting ahead of guys and trusting those pitches with two strikes, the strikeouts are going to come,” said Bard. “It’s a little frustrating, to not get it when you need it…
Bard is continuing his growing pains as a starter and the walks are concerning... but this was all expected. He can control his 100 MPH heat effectively yet struggles with throwing 95. He's blaming his mechanics to explain everything but looking at what Brooks Baseball has from yesterday's game, it's not terrible. Of course the strike zone looks like someone played a game of darts blindfolded but it's progress.
Despite the high walks & ERA (4.69), he's been keeping it close enough for the Sox to win the game. Look at what he's done after he made that relief appearance against the Twins. All of those were winnable games, even the one against the A's and the offense failed to produce.
This is exactly what was expected of him thus far and the fact that he hasn't gotten deep into games yet might be beneficial for him as they won't have to worry about his innings. He's on pace for somewhere in between 160-170 innings is he manages to pitch 32 games this season. That's a nearly identical pace that Blue Jays pitcher Brandon Morrow had when they converted him in 2010 (146 1/3 IP in 26 starts). That turned out good for the Jays and hopefully it'll turn out the same for the Sox.
Rest of the Links: Globe: Sox hit 3 homers in 6-5 win over O's | Bobby V says Youk isn't done at third | Herald: Sox earn break | Bard amisson key pitch fewer K's lead to weird things | Shop turns ire into fire | CSNNE: Putting the save in Aceves | If we keep this up, we'll win the championship | Podsenik back with a bang | WEEI: 20 days, 20 games, 20 lessons | Patchwork OF leads Sox | Sox are playing championship caliber |