Pedro Luis Lazo: “I am not concerned about pitching”

Pedro Luis Lazo: “I am not concerned about pitching”
Fecha de publicación: 
18 June 2023
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The Team Cuba pitching coach, Pedro Luis Lazo, confirmed that he is not concerned about the pitching field for the upcoming 24th Central American and the Caribbean Games, despite not having, this time, hurlers who are currently playing in foreign leagues, including those playing in the U.S. baseball system.

The pitcher with most wins ever in Cuban baseball (257), refuses the theory that pitching is the weakest link in Cuban baseball, even though offense stats are superior in our National Baseball Series. “I do not believe it may be a concern. The athletes chosen will get the job done in San Salvador. For journalists, pitching is always the field of greatest concern. However, hurlers always sole the problem as it happened in WBC I.”

The also Olympic champion explained why pitchers increase velocity once they are out of Cuba. “Over there, they do different things we do not do here in Cuba, and I am not talking about the physical-technical approach. They simply take some injections. If you take a closer look, when these guys are back, their velocity drops. I played in the Mexican League and I put on different things and I did not feel anything.”

Lazo believes that it is advisable for pitchers to have some notion on hitting, because it helps them to find the best pitch selection. “I started out in baseball as a hitter, but I was afraid of being hit by pitches. For those having no notion on hitting, it is then more difficult. When you know how to hit a ball, you know the appropriate pitches to use in every game situation.” 

The pitching coach of the Team Cuba pointed out that it is very useful for pitchers to work on batting practice. "When they pitch in practice they do the complete job. It's something we did in the most recent WBC and it gave us results."

One of the most outstanding pitchers in the current National Baseball Series is Yankiel Mauri from Sancti Spiritus, however he was not called up to the national team. “We chose another right-hander, Renner Rivero, who has performed pretty well. Mauri is not ruled out. We will keep him in mind for other events and we believe he will be able to do the job.”

Pedro Luis Lazo explained the reason behind the selection of young pitcher Miguel Neira in the group that will play in El Salvador. "Despite his youth, he has quality. Although his overall stats have not been good, we value how well he pitches to left-handed hitters and we'll use him in the situational role."

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Díaz / CubaSí Translation Staff

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