Watching a baseball game at Keyspan Park is usually an entertaining experience — but when 23-year-old righty Nick Waechter was on the hill for most of his first five starts, the game moved about as quickly as Paul Lo Duca trying to leg out a double.
The problem was not only that Waechter took too long in between pitches — but in his first five leisurely starts, the Cyclones won only two games.
That’s when the coaches stepped in, working with the Western Oregon State College graduate to speed up his delivery.
“When he works slow, he has too much time to think about what he wants to do on the mound,” said skipper Edgar Alfonzo. “When he’s working fast, he keeps his stuff down and he’s much more effective.”
Since mid-July, when his delivery was sped up, the lanky hurler has a noticeable fire in his eyes and is blazing through the competition.
He’s 3–0 with a 1.43 ERA in his five starts — good enough for Player of the Week honors a few weeks back. On the season, Waechter is 4–2 with a 3.54 ERA.
“When I wasn’t pitching as well as I would have liked to, my pace on the mound was a lot slower,” said Waechter, who admitted to upping his intake of Red Bull before games to keep him moving on the mound.
“The coaching staff noticed it and has made sure I’m more deliberate and quick and the mound. My tempo is much better now and I’ve turned my season around.”