I have a thing for kids who get injured. Brandon Erbe was injured last year. Actually, it was probably because I noticed him – every player in any sport that I notice promptly goes down with an injury. Erbe ended up going 0-10 with a 5.74 ERA in 2010 before he was finally shut down and had his torn labrum surgically repaired.
The video is from the 2009 Arizona Fall League. Erbe’s been having difficulty with keeping his delivery consistent, and he doesn’t really have a good pitch besides his fastball. Although his fastball sits in the low 90s, his changeup and slider are below par and they’ve given him problems and opposing hitters field days. His inconsistent mechanics ended up being the source of his injury. Now we’re going to keep an eye on him, because I’m oddly fond of him (and because he has the same birthday as my Dad – they were both born on Christmas Day). He was cleared to begin his throwing program back in December and now that it’s Spring Training he’ll likely begin to get some actual pitching in, but it’s doubtful that he’ll see any game action until May or June. I’ll be sure to update you when he does, though, because I’m way too invested in the Minor Leagues for my own good.
That, and I love a good underdog story.