Odorizzi with the Tampa Bay Rays
|Tampa Bay Rays – No. 23|
March 27, 1990 |
|September 23, 2012, for the Kansas City Royals|
(through 2016 season)
|Earned run average||3.75|
Jacob Todd "Jake" Odorizzi (born March 27, 1990) is an American professional baseball pitcher for the Tampa Bay Rays of Major League Baseball (MLB). He made his MLB debut in 2012 with the Kansas City Royals.
Odorizzi was selected by the Milwaukee Brewers in the first round (32nd overall) of the 2008 Major League Baseball Draft. He had a 9–9 record, a 3.68 earned run average and 197 strikeouts in the Milwaukee Brewers system. He played for the Arizona Brewers (2008), Helena Brewers (2009) and the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (2010).
Kansas City Royals
On December 17, 2010, the Brewers traded Odorizzi, Alcides Escobar, Jeremy Jeffress and Lorenzo Cain to the Royals for Zack Greinke and Yuniesky Betancourt. Baseball America ranked Odorizzi as the 69th best prospect in baseball prior to the 2011 season and the 23rd best prospect at midseason. After the 2011 season, he was named the fifth best prospect in the Double-A Texas League. He was named to appear in the 2012 All-Star Futures Game. Odorizzi split time in 2012 between the Royals Double-A affiliate Northwest Arkansas Naturals and Triple-A Omaha Storm Chasers, posting an overall record of 15-5 and a 3.03 ERA. On September 16, 2012, the Royals purchased Odorizzi's contract from Class AAA Omaha. He made two starts for the team before season's end.
Tampa Bay Rays
On December 9, 2012, the Royals traded Odorizzi to the Tampa Bay Rays (along with Mike Montgomery, Patrick Leonard and Wil Myers) in exchange for James Shields and Wade Davis. He was optioned to the Triple-A Durham Bulls on March 12. In early May, he threw a combined no-hitter for the Bulls against the Pawtucket Red Sox. He was recalled by the Rays on May 20 to start in Toronto against the Blue Jays. He was sent back to the Bulls on May 29. He was recalled on August 29 for a start against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, and optioned back to Durham the next day. He was recalled on September 20.
Odorizzi throws five pitches. He leads with a four-seam fastball at 91–93 mph. He also has a cutter (mid 80s), slider (low 80s), splitter (baseball) (mid 80s), and curveball (low-mid 70s). The slider is mostly used against right-handed hitters, the changeup mostly against lefties.
Scouts originally regarded his fastball as his best pitch and his changeup the least developed. With the help of Alex Cobb, Odorizzi developed "the thing": a split-change similar to Cobb's main strikeout pitch. This led to Odorizzi winning the 5th starter's job in spring training in 2014.
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