ST. LOUIS — Francisco Pena was behind the plate Sunday night when Jordan Hicks threw the five fastest pitches of the 2018 season. Two of them, 105 mph sinkers, are tied for the second-fastest pitches in recorded MLB history.
He paused for a moment.
But we’ve got a phenom right here, he said. Hicks, he’s a special kid. He can do a lot of stuff.
After the game, Pena, who has done an excellent job as the starter with Yadier Molina on the disabled list, told his 6-year-old son, Francisco, about being behind the plate for that bit of history Hicks delivered.
It was pretty cool, Pena said.
The day after Hicks’ performance, his teammates were still talking about how the youngster lit up the radar gun. Partially, of course, because us media types kept asking them about it, but they were more than happy to talk about the smoke.
Baltimore will start right-hander Dylan Bundy (5-7, 3.81) against Atlanta right-hander Julio Teheran (5-4, 3.97)
I have a tendency to try and explore, especially when I am scuffling, Davis said. I was trying to get that feeling back, trying to do too much.
Davis had certainly been scuffling. He came into Friday’s game hitting .150 and was 3-for-27 with 14 strikeouts in the first seven games of June, before manager Buck Showalter ordered him shutdown and sent for inspection. Davis had led the majors in home runs twice from 2013 to 2015.
It’s not a one-day, two-day, three-day (adjustment), Showalter said. It’s some things that he really wants to stay with. He understands what made him successful and what can again.
Teheran will be making his 15th start of the season. He spent 10 days on the disabled list with a bruised right thumb. He came off the DL and on June 17 tossed six scoreless innings against San Diego. Teheran’s velocity increased from 89.5 mph to 91.4 mph and his location improved from his previous start before the injury.
His bat — as well as his defensive ability — have been a source of comfort for Brewers pitchers this season and will be Saturday for Chase Anderson, who takes the mound for Game 2 of the Brewers’ four-game series with the Cardinals at Miller Park.