Wow...two starts and two unbelievably bad performances by the former Yankee ace Chien-Ming Wang. The question is, what's wrong With Wang?
In addition to a serious lack of velocity (89-91 instead of 93-95 mph), Wang's signature sinker has had more lateral movement then downward tilt the last two games—essentially, the sinker ain't sinking.
A thigh-high 90 mph fastball with only a little in-and-out movement is gonna get hit hard—and has.
In the past, Wang has shown that he adds velocity as the weather warms. This season, it seems, the heat is even more lacking than usual. Having lost most of last season to injury, I believe that we will see the radar gun light up more as Wang gains more arm strength.
As for the sink on the sinker, movement on a pitch is directly related to the amount of spin imparted upon the ball by the pitcher. If a pitcher is lacking arm strength, he will usually "muscle-up" in order to compensate and try and get more velocity. This restricts the free and easy release of the ball and squeezes some spin out of the pitch.
In other words, as we see Wang's arm strength increase, I believe not only will the velocity return, but, as a result, we will start to see the downward dart of Wang's sinker return.
Let's hope it happens sooner rather than later!
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