Confidence sky high for Marcus Stroman after tender mechanical tuning

Yankees pitcher Marcus Stroman is in action against Baltimore during a spring game on March 2, 2024.

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New York Yankees pitcher Marcus Stroman attempted a lighthearted move during his outing against the Orioles on Saturday afternoon. In the fourth inning, between warmup pitches, he adjusted his hand position from near his belt to his chest before attempting a playful maneuver.

Marcus Stroman wedged the ball between his heels, hopped on the infield grass, and launched it into the air behind him, aiming for a rainbow flick – a technique where the ball is caught mid-air after a kick in the later stages of a 7-3 loss to Baltimore.

While the attempt didn’t achieve the necessary height for a successful catch, Marcus Stroman retrieved the ball and continued his warm-ups, seemingly unfazed by the playful miss. According to him, the new change allowed him ample comfort and he has a strong confidence in his identity and the effort he has invested throughout his life.

Marcus Stroman went ahead to claim that he was ready to take the mound with a high level of assurance and doubts anyone would approach the game with the same confidence level. He attributed this confidence to knowing that he had adequately prepared and exhausted all avenues of preparation away from the field.

“I think I’m just comfortable in my own skin as a person. I’m just very confident in who I am,” Marcus Stroman announced. “I’m very confident in the work that I put in my entire life, so I go out to the mound very confident. I don’t think anyone goes out as confident as I do. It’s just because I know I’m prepared. I know there’s nothing more that I can do away from the field in order to prepare.”

Marcus Stroman, player of the new york yankees
J. Conrad Williams Jr./Newsday RM

Yankees’ Marcus Stroman seamless after the tweak

Marcus Stroman explained that his hand placement adjustment during the game was aimed at improving his delivery efficiency. This tweak seemingly contributed to a strong performance against the Baltimore Orioles lineup.

The pitcher pitched four scoreless innings, allowing just two singles and striking out three batters. Although throwing a few extra pitches due to his effectiveness, he finished with a pitch count under 60, slightly higher than his previous spring outing.

Adding to the significance of his performance, Marcus Stroman revealed to have adopted a proactive approach. He identified the need for a hand placement change during the week and implemented it on the mound, demonstrating his ability to self-adjust. According to him, the adjustment was enabling him to maintain a much more consistent repetition. Marcus Stroman also pointed out that with his hands lower, the height of his hand pump was becoming too variable with each pitch. He emphasized that keeping his hands at chest level, compact, and tight, was crucial for him.

“I’m already having way better results,” he said. “It’s just allowing me to be repetitive way more consistently. When my hands are low, my hand pump was becoming too inconsistent with the height of it each and every pitch. Putting my hands at my chest, very compact and tight for me is my biggest thing.”

Boone in awe with Marcus Stroman’s fine-tuning

Manager Aaron Boone was taken by surprise upon hearing this information, but he couldn’t help but smirk, showing his approval and recognition of Stroman’s consistent effort to refine his game.

Boone described Marcus Stroman as someone who relies on instinct and intuition and noted that the pitcher has built his career on these qualities, highlighting his athleticism and innate sense of pitching as defining attributes. The manager suggested that whatever methods Marcus Stroman employs have been effective for him, advising him to continue with them.

The pitcher himself emphasized the importance of intuition as he discussed his adjustment, aiming to streamline his mechanics for greater efficiency and simplicity. Marcus Stroman sounds meticulous in his approach to studying footage and implementing modifications. Remaining attuned to his body, both physically and mentally, is a fundamental aspect of his success in professional baseball.

Marcus Stroman commented on his mechanical improvements after reaching a pitch count in the high 50s, noting that even subtle adjustments can have a significant impact on timing and fluidity. He emphasized the importance of consistency in his movements and body positioning, acknowledging that while progress has been made, there is still room for improvement. The pitcher also expressed confidence in continuing to refine his mechanics over the next two to three weeks of spring training.

Marcus Stroman, player of the new york yankees
J. Conrad Williams Jr./Newsday RM

“I made huge strides [mechanically],” Marcus Stroman said. “Anytime you make adjustments like that, they seem small, but they’re pretty drastic because it’s all connected to timing and fluidity. Just trying to get reps, trying to become more consistent with my shapes and my body. I think I’m getting there. I’m not where I need to be, but that’s why we have another two, three weeks to go.”

Marcus Stroman’s ease during spring training reflects his adaptability. Despite the outcomes in the Grapefruit League games, he has seamlessly integrated into the Yankees‘ clubhouse since joining the team in January on a two-year contract, as per Boone. He is satisfied and eager to compete in what he describes as a challenging division this season, embracing the pressure that accompanies his much-anticipated chance to play for the Yankees.

Marcus Stroman underlined that putting in the necessary work enables him to step onto the field with a clear mind and simply focus on pitching without overthinking.

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