Vintage Maddux – Roy Smith

After last night’s game against the Giants, I have to make a few comments about Greg Maddux and about what a masterfully pitched game it was on both sides.  Jason Schmidt and Greg Maddux are completely different pitchers, one a classic power pitcher, the other the epitome of finesse. However, both pitchers’ base philosophy is the same — work quick, throw strikes, change speeds. The philosophy is age old and was never more evident than last night.

Jim Kaat once said to me that pitching is an art, not a science.  I believe that and Greg Maddux was Picasso last night. What Jim was saying is that pitching is as much feel as it is game planning. What Greg does better than anyone possibly in history is control the speed of the bat. In order to do that he attacks with his good sinking fastball, establishing his optimum speed in the hitters’ mind, then reacts from there. If he gets a groundball out early in the count, great. If the pitch is taken or fouled off, he decides his next pitch by the reaction of the hitter. He also takes into account his history with that hitter and the count, the score and what he has working that particular day. In other words, he is always the one dictating and it is almost impossible for the hitter to guess what’s coming because he can get all of his pitches over for strikes on any count. I read an article written before Hank Aaron faced Al Downing the night Aaron hit his 715th home run. Downing was asked what he was going to throw Hammerin’ Hank. Al said “You’ll have to tell me what the previous pitch was.” That is Maddux.

Whitey Ford once said that he felt like he held an invisible string attached to the hitters stride foot with which he either pulled it or left it taut whenever he wanted. That is also Maddux.

10 Comments

Maddux, Smartest pitcher in Baseball, bar none !! We’re lucky to have him !!

Thank you Greg for wanting to play in LA !!

Go Dodgers !!

Watched the game on ESPN last night. Just plain looked easy. Greg’s facial expression never changes. Still looks amazed that he can play the game. Seemed to work well with Martin. Glad to have him on board. Also like the way he wears his pant leg with the 1950- 1970 style. Miss the Dodger look of the 50′s and 60′s. Also miss the clean cut look. Beimel needs a hair cut.

I agree euhlman I like the clean cut look as well. It shows respect !! I think this is the Boston connection, McCourt and Little remember all to well the scrapy Red Sox’s winning as they maintain that “from the wrong side of the tracks” image !! If this is all I have to accept I can live with it !!
Go Dodgers !!

You are right Gary. If that is all I have to live with life in Dodgerland is pretty good. However, I do miss the clean cut look but I suppose I do as my love of baseball and especially the Dodgers started in the 50′s. Right now I am loving Dodger happenings and almost can’t wait for the results the next morning. The home games start at 11:05 here and I miss out on a lot of action on the computer by turning in around midnight. First thing I do each morning is check the Dodger site and the box score.
Go Dodgers.

Don’t you have TIVO/DVR up there so you can record it ??
Go Dodgers !!

Yes we do but I expect once I know the result I no doubt wouldn’t watch a recording. Couldn’t not look for the game results upon awaking. Makes for a bit of an exciting start to my day and I enjoy resding box scores.

I understand now, I guess I’d be the same way !! My problem is that I wouldn’t go to sleep !! Thank God I hate football and don’t really care about what happens in Basketball, Hocky etc… My wife would kill me !!
Keep the faith euhlman !! I’ll be at the game tonight. I’ll think of ya !!

Go Dodgers !!

Very good. Thanks. My wife has put up with my other passion (Dodgers) for a long time. Lived out my fantasy in 1985 with five games at Dodger Stadium and twice visited Vero Beach during spring training.I also really don’t watch much of other team sports. Red Wing ,Piston fan but really only at play-off time. Don’t really care for football and although no one here understands I prefer CFL to NFL. Definitely lower league and therefore for me more exciting. Enjoy the game.
My first name is Harold. The e in the email address is for my wife’s name, Elaine. Ray not the only with an Elaine and Dodgers in his life. Go Dodgers!!

Harold isn’t Vero Beach great?? I went this year for the first time in 14 years. I used to go every year when everything else didn’t matter !! My plans are to go every year so I figure I’ll get there about every other year now !! I think wandering the practice fields and watching a game is about as good as it can get. I really got to see and know a lot of the players we’re seeing today. While a number of them either didn’t make the team or have been traded, I see myself following them from afar.
See you in the next posting !!

Go Dodgers !!

I’m hoping Carrara keeps us in the game.

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