Danny Salazar makes his big league debut against R.A. Dickey and the Blue Jays in a noon-hour matinee. The 23-year-old right hander was born In the Dominican Republic and was signed by Cleveland in 2006. Salazar lost almost all of 2011 to Tommy John surgery, but shot through the Indians system after returning making it to AA by the end of last season. After starting there this season, he moved up to AAA Columbus where he's had the worst numbers so far in his career, although a sub 3 FIP is nothing to be too worried about. He's had well over 10 K/9 this season and has clear swing and miss stuff with good command as well.
Salazar repertoire includes a fastball that has reached 100 MPH, but originally lacked any obvious plus breaking pitches, making it seem a future in the bullpen was a certainty. His power curve and changeup have come a long way this year, allowing the Indians to continue stretching Salazar out as a starter (he's started 99 of the 100 games he's played in the Indians system). That being said, Salazar is still on a strict 5 inning limit, not surpassing that limit since early May meaning the Indians bullpen will be leaned on today. The key will be the Blue Jays shaking up Salazar early and then grinding it out against the bullpen.
His curveball can be seen a couple of times at the 0:29 mark:
The lineup I'd like to see for tomorrow would be:
- Reyes SS
- Bautista RF
- Lind 1B
- Encarnacion DH
- Rasmus CF
- Izturis 3B
- Davis LF
- Thole C
- Kawasaki SS
This could go either way, but a series win would be quaint.