The Twins’ rotation had several arms already, and the organization figured that Duran’s big velocity could play up in the bullpen.
They weren’t wrong.
So far, Duran has been one of the most impressive relievers not only in the American League, but in MLB.
He has a strong 1.91 ERA in 56.2 innings, with a whopping 73 strikeouts.
Just by taking a glimpse at his stuff, it’s easy to see why he strikes out so many people.
He has easy 100-mph gas, and isn’t afraid to use it.
His Manager Is Impressed With His Stuff
Even his manager is extremely impressed with what he sees from his rookie.
“Rocco Baldelli on Jhoan Duran throwing a 100 mph splinker: ‘That pumps you up like very few things I’ve ever seen from a pitcher. Ever. The end goal is to get three outs. There are a lot of different ways to do that. But my god, that is some insane stuff,'” The Athletic’s Aaron Gleeman tweeted.
Rocco Baldelli on Jhoan Duran throwing a 100 mph splinker: "That pumps you up like very few things I've ever seen from a pitcher. Ever. The end goal is to get three outs. There are a lot of different ways to do that. But my god, that is some insane stuff." https://t.co/LLfml0KYvl
— Aaron Gleeman (@AaronGleeman) August 30, 2022
Baldelli is right: the end goal is to get three outs (in an inning), and there are several ways to do it: whether you are a soft-tosser with excellent control, a curveball artist, a sinkerballer, or a pitcher who thrives by painting the corners, there are multiple avenues to succeed as a pitcher.
There is no question, however, that Duran makes it more spectacular and fun to watch.
Media often calls it the “splinker” because it’s a two-seamer by definition, but sinks in a sudden to fool the batter.
He also throws a straight four-seamer, and a curveball.
All pitches can miss bats with the best of them.
Duran is, without a doubt, one of the most exciting pitchers in MLB.