Darin Gorski: A Little Bit Of Confidence Can Go A Long Way

In this week’s mailbag, Anthony DiComo of Mets.com, fields a question about the prospect status of lefthander Darin Gorski.

Why doesn’t anyone mention Darin Gorski as a top pitching prospect? His stats last year were exceptional.

Two reasons. Firstly, Gorski produced those statistics (a 2.08 ERA, 140 strikeouts and 29 walks in 138 2/3 innings) as a 23-year-old in Class A ball. As mentioned above in the discussion of Duda, such success against mostly younger players carries relatively little weight with Major League talent evaluators.

Also working against Gorski is the fact that his pure stuff does not impress scouts. His fastball often sits in the high 80s and he does not possess any standout secondary offerings. Of course, many pitchers have enjoyed fine big league careers with similar arsenals, and just as many have succeeded despite their lack of pedigree (Gorski, like Duda, was drafted in the seventh round). But Gorski must prove himself at the upper levels of the Minors before he can inspire any type of similar confidence. This year should be telling for him.

Our Mets Minor League analyst Petey, ranked Darin Gorski No. 13 on MMO’s Top 50 Prospects and recently asked him about his eye-opening performance last season:

Petey:  Ok, the big question, the one you’ve probably been asked a million times already, how did you do it? I have heard writers previously credit the development of your change-up, but could it really be as simple as that? You went from a 6-8 record in 2010 at Savannah, with a 4.58 ERA in 114 IP’s, to a record in 2011 at St. Lucie of 11-3, with an ERA of 2.08 in 138.2 IP’s. And you were the model of consistency all year, which says a lot about your mechanics. But tell us what changes you made between the 2010 and 2011 seasons that made such a dramatic difference for you?

Darin:  It’s funny what a little bit of confidence can do for a pitcher. I’d have to say the first big difference I noticed from last year to this year would be my fastball command, which is one thing Phil and I had worked hard on. Second is just being confident in my ability to pitch and trusting my stuff each time out there. The fastball command definitely helped all my pitches because when you’re ahead in the count you can expand the zone and keep the hitters off balance. If you’re always behind in the count, as I was quite often in Savannah, it puts the hitters in good fastball counts and they are ready to hit and that’s where I ran into trouble. The work that we did mechanically in the bullpen allowed me to make that adjustment and it translated in the game, which is when the confidence started to kick in.

Read Petey’s full interview with Darin Gorski here.

I’m very intrigued by Gorski and I’m looking forward to see how he performs at Double-A Binghamton where he is expected to begin the season. After winning the Mets Minor League Pitcher of the Year Award last season, I can’t wait to see what he does for an encore. LGM.

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I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73, '00 and '15, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.