Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Curious Case of Matt Lollis

By Gunner Ramer

It was only a couple years ago, many scouts thought Lollis was dripping with potential to become a solid starter after finishing with a 2.12 ERA and a 1.000 WHIP in 2010. He could become a great starter in years to come. According to Minor League Ball before the 2011 season, Lollis was the 12th best prospect in a deep San Diego system, and set for a potential breakout campaign. The Riverside native, spiraled into a poor year finishing with a rough ERA of 5.35 and and a SO/BB ratio of 2.53, far lower than anytime in his career. In 2012, the 6 foot 9, hard throwing righty, was 1-13 with a 6.57 ERA in 39 games (14 starts) across 3 levels. He was so bad as a starter in Lake Elsinore, the Padres decided to move him to a relief role, which he still performed poorly at. How did a promising 22 year old who can touch 97 miles an hour, go 1-13?

At a game I saw in Lake Elsinore this year, I had the opportunity to watch Matt. I was baffled as to why he was so bad in this start. Long story short, he went 2.2 innings, allowing 6 earned runs and 6 hits. In the start I saw, his timing was atrocious and had absolutely no balance on his follow through. His leg would always end up on the first base side, not going on a straight plane. Lollis’ knuckle-curve was flat (allowing a monster two run home run) and his changeup was nothing to get crazy about, enough movement to miss a couple bats. His fastball flirted with 94 the whole time I saw him, and had slight movement. I believe nothing will come out of Lollis, if you asked me two years ago I would've had a different answer. It seems Matt Lollis’ work ethic is not there or maybe he has not received proper coaching, as he has not made any changes to his sloppy delivery. I would be shocked if he became more than a minor league reliever at this point.

If you noticed, I did not write this. I am experimenting and adding a new writer to the staff. A warm welcome to Gunner Ramer, our newest writer. What do you guys think?

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