Bauer still working through mechanics, lack of adrenaline

“As much as you try to compete with yourself... it’s just not there.”

Alex Hooper
September 15, 2018 - 4:46 pm

© David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

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Cleveland, OH (92.3 The Fan) – Trevor Bauer pitching before the post-season is not a foregone conclusion. The righty stretching out an outing before the post-season is even less so.

Bauer tossed his second bullpen session off of a mound Saturday, throwing 40 pitches. It was his second mound session since hitting the disabled list on August 14 after being struck by a Jose Abreu line drive.

The 27-year-old will throw again on Tuesday, likely to ‘a hitter or two,’ according to Cleveland Indians Manager Terry Francona.

On his current track, Bauer will get back into a regular season game prior to the ALDS opener on October 5. That is the team’s expectation according to President Chris Antonetti.

“Hopefully, we can build up volume and have him pitch multiple innings in a game,” he said. “Exactly where that ends is really hard to predict, but that's still the goal and objective.”

The step up from 25 pitches to 40 was a positive one, with Bauer ramping up the intensity in the final portion.

That intensity may prove the be one of the more important aspects of the Cy Young candidate’s recovery, and it is certainly absent from the recovery process.

Bauer took the mound Saturday afternoon with a handful of Indians coaches, groundskeepers and reporters watching from the dugout. After around 20 pitches at game speed, not including warmup tosses, he sat alone at the end of the bench in the Indians dugout.

Pitching in near silence is obviously not the norm for Bauer, especially given that he has never been injured in-season before. It is not where he is at his best, either.

Bauer noted that there is, at the very least, an extra mile per hour more or so on his fastball when the adrenaline is flowing than not. On Saturday, he had to be content with what his body could give him, sitting around 88 mph.

“As much as you try to compete with yourself or trick yourself mentally or whatever, it’s just not there,” he said. “So hopefully I can face hitters next … get some people out here talking and yelling at some hitters, stuff like that, try to get the adrenaline up. That’d be nice, just to see how everything responds when there’s that external input.”

If it so happens that Bauer does not get stretched out prior to the playoffs and is used in a relief role, that adrenaline will be flowing especially freely.

Behind home plate during the workout as well was what looked like an entire IT department, as Indians baseball operations staff ran the Edgertronic high-speed camera and evaluated the in-house Statcast numbers.

As Bauer prepares to get back into a game setting, the main hurdle is not pain, but his kinetic chain. The righty said his mechanics were still ‘out of sequence’ while going through mound work again, and that he would review the tape after his post-throwing regiment to see what was out of sync.