Manny Banuelos’ new toy

Yankees claim Craig Tatum
Austin Romine suffered setback of back injury

Via Conor Foley, Manny Banuelos broke out a new cutter during his minor league start today. He’s been working on the pitch on the side, but today was the first time he used it in a game situation.

Guys like Andy Pettitte, Mark Buehrle, Kenny Rogers, Cliff Lee, Ted Lilly, John Danks, and Jamie Moyer are what I pathetically call Four-C lefties, meaning they rely on a cutter, changeup, curveball, and command. Those types of pitchers traditionally have a lot of success in the bigs and remain effective for as long as they stay healthy. If the cutter sticks, Banuelos is going to be cut from the same cloth, and that’s exciting.

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Yankees claim Craig Tatum
Austin Romine suffered setback of back injury
  • STONE COLD Austin Romine

    Solid.

  • Alkaline

    5Ds > 4Cs (Dodge, dip, dive, duck..and dodge)

    What’s nice is that hopefully Manny has the year at AAA to play with this new shiny toy. With 6 starters now, Andy, and then if needed Phelps and co.

  • SevenAces

    When did he add the cutter to his repertoire?
    Does MO have anything to do with this?

    • neo

      Mo teaches everyone his cutter. Of course not everyone learns it.

      • D-Rob da man

        Please teach it Pineda

        • STONE COLD Austin Romine

          Pineda’s been throwing a cutter during spring training.

      • DM

        He needs to learn Pettitte’s cutter, not Rivera’s. The sweeping cutter from a 3/4 LH delivery is a different pitch. More break, less velocity.

  • Jesse

    Nice to hear him trying to add a pitch to his repertoire.

  • CP

    Doesn’t Banuelos throw harder than those other guys?

    • jsbrendog

      so imagine if he can add the cutter AND maintain the velocity AND have the control. boner jamz

    • STONE COLD Austin Romine

      Jon Lester throws a cutter as well.

    • Monterowasdinero

      Yes-he has a fb at 95 this ST. Andy had a fb but never 95.

      • handtius

        actually, he once did.

        • handtius

          or close to it.

          • RetroRob

            Maybe close. I doubt Andy ever threw 95.

            BTW There has been some conjecture that Phil Hughes lost velocity on his fastball once he started throwing the cutter.

            • handtius

              i remember back in the 90’s, when he came up, he was throwing hard. i think he was in the 95 range. any RAB heads know where we can find that info?

              • Mike HC

                I remember that one of his infamous years in Houston he was throwing absolute flames like we basically never saw with the Yanks.

  • Bklyn

    I just came in my pants.

    • Don W

      That tends to happen to the immature.

  • D-Rob da man

    Did anyone see the yankees on 30 clubs in 30 days?
    Boomer wells was talking to Pettitte and Guidry.
    Quote: did you see that kid who was throwing yesterday, don’t know his name
    But man talk about cheese, it come out of him with no effort like Mo’s.
    Guidry: That’s Banuelos.
    Boomer: Wow great stuff.

    • vin

      Yeah, I saw that. It’s always nice when guys with successful careers corroborate what we think we’re seeing from a prospect.

      • I am not the droids you’re looking for…

        Gee if we didn’t know any better we might think that the eye is a useful tool for evaluation.

  • Guest

    How’d Manny pitch while he was in big boy camp this Spring?

    Odds on 2014 rotation of:

    CC, Pineda, Nova, Hughes, Manny?

    That would be one way to keep costs down.

    • jsbrendog

      if hughes pitches well enough to be in it he won’t be cheap.

      • Guest

        Fair point. The other three youngsters still should be, though.

  • William

    Ha! The Yanks got their Jon Lester!

  • Gonzo

    Don’t get too excited, don’t get too excited, don’t get too excited…

  • Paul VuvuZuvella

    Too bad there is no such thing as “clutch”, would like to see him become a 5C Lefty.

    • Rainbow Connection

      True. It’s all luck.

  • Guns of Navarone

    Really looks like the “rule of three” is in full effect for the Killer Bs.

    Brackman’s a bust, Betances seems destined for a relief role (at least with the Yankees) and Banuelos should have a bright future as a starter if he stays healthy.

    • Jesse

      I’ll take it.

      • Tyrone Sharpton

        DJ Mitchell needs to get a cutter. that brutha nvr gets respect but maybe this would

    • Ted Nelson

      Still really early to say Betances is destined for the pen. You can be a successful MLB starter walking 4 guys per 9.

  • Peter R

    I like new toys

  • Alex

    I remember Pettitte saying when he started using his cutter more he lost feeling for his change-up I hope that won’t happen to Banuelos.
    But this make me a tad nervous.

    • DM

      And sometimes it saps the life from the regular fastball.

      • Fin

        Sounds like one of those pills that pharma companies advertise. It will treat your hang nail, but you may experience peeing out of your butt, bleeding from your eyes and irratible bowl syndrome.

      • Bo Knows

        Tell that to Jon Lester, Dan Haren, Doc, Cliff Lee, Josh Beckett, Jered Weaver, CJ Wilson, John Danks, Gavin Floyd, just to name a few.

        With a lot of pitchers though, the cutter seems to be a rescue pitch for a ton of pitchers. Many don’t learn it until they start seeing a decline in stuff first (necessity). Those that care enough to learn it early (Doc, Lee, Lester for example)it becomes just another dominate weapon.

        • DM

          I said “sometimes” — and a few of the names on your list are still young while others don’t use the cutter as their primary pitch. Are Beckett, Weaver and Floyd really “cutter” pitchers? Both Weaver and Floyd throw something closer to a slider.

          Some starters fall in love with it, and their arm strength and pop on their fastball suffers. Some even posited that Hughes’s last velocity outage was due to incorporating the cutter. I don’t believe that but the premise isn’t new. Getting too “cutter happy” can have consequences. Also, you need to distinguish between cutter types. Pettitte isn’t throwing the cutter than Rivera throws.
          I remember when the splitter was the new out pitch — until arms started going. Pitchers still use it — but it’s not the number one “out” pitch like it was for so many back then.

          • Bo Knows

            Many of those pitchers are helped by the use of the cutter, especially for many of them who don’t have elite velocity, or in the case of Beckett, who’s fastball is in decline

            overuse of any single pitch can have adverse affects on an individuals arm, the entire act of pitching is an unnatural action, and any type of pitch can cause harm to the arm. Hughes problems last year can’t just be blamed on overuse of the cutter (maybe the foulball-itis can be attributed to the cutter). There were a myriad of problems such as the workload, and how much he worked (or didn’t) in order to compensate for the increase after his season ended.

            Outside of last year, Hughes has been fairly consistent with him as a prospect being mostly 91-93 who could sometimes hit 95, his velocity did jump when he was sent to the pen, and as his body grew stronger, we saw his starting velocity increase into the 92-94 range that we saw in 2010.

            • DM

              Like I mentioned, I don’t believe Phil’s issue was due to using the cutter. I just said that some people did. I’m not against using a cutter as part of a repertoire. And again, there are cutters that have a slight late break that maintain 95+% of the fastball velocity, and cutters (usually from lefties) that sweep and break more like a bad slider in the 85mph range. I read that Weaver is trying out a cutter this ST; the thing that looks like a cutter to you from the past is his slider. And Floyd throws something like a slutter.

  • LiterallyFigurative

    Please let Man Ban be a beast this year!

    With a cutter to add to his arsenal, he might be so good that he gets a 2013 spot in the rotation (lessening the Cole Hamels signing I’m pining for).

    Hope springs eternal.