SAN FRANCISCO — It was Logan Webb Day Tuesday at Sierra Elementary School in Rocklin.
Should Webb, 24, beat the Los Angeles Dodgers Thursday night in the National League Division Series, his level of fame will go well beyond Placer County.
You could make the case that in terms of interest, intensity and the opponent, Webb is pitching the biggest game in the history of Oracle Park. If he beats the Dodgers and pitches the Giants into the National League Championship Series against the Atlanta Braves, there’s liable to be a statue in his likeness some day outside the ballpark.
Not that there’s any pressure or anything.
“I feel like I just like these types of moments,” Webb said Wednesday at a news conference before a Giants workout. “I love the crowd. I love the pressure. I’m excited to throw tomorrow, especially because I’ve got a guy back there (in Buster Posey) that’s always calm. Even of I do get a little up, he’ll be the first one to tell me to bring it back down.”
Based on Webb’s overall body of work and especially his last two starts, the Giants have to like their chances with the NLDS tied 2-2. Back on May 7, Webb gave up six earned runs in 3 2/3 innings on the road to Colorado and saw his record fall to 1-3. He hasn’t lost since, finishing the regular season 11-3 with a 3.03 earned run average.
Webb beat the San Diego Padres 11-4 to close out the regular season and give the Giants the division title against the Dodgers and even hit a home run. He struck out eight in seven innings. Then in Game 1 of the NLDS against the Dodgers, Webb was even better, scattering five hits in 7 2/3 innings with no walks and 10 strikeouts.
At 6-foot-1, 220 pounds and a wicked two-seam fastball that runs inside to right-handed batters plus a slider and change-up, Webb is pitching in a manner that belies his age and experience level.
“I can’t say he’s pitched a Game 5 in a division series, but he’s pretty battle-tested in other ways,” Giants manager Gabe Kapler said. “I think he can lean on some of that experience he’s had and definitely trust himself because of the success he’s had to date.”
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts thought his team wasn’t patient enough and chased too many pitches out of the strike zone in Game 1, but acknowledged the plate discipline is easier said than done given Webb’s skillset.
“He’s got really good stuff. The ball has a lot of action,” Roberts said. “When he’s right, he has really good command, and even when he’s not, the ball kind of moves a lot.”
Through all the success, Webb’s demeanor hasn’t changed.
“He’s a big goofball who shows up with a big, goofy smile on his face every day, in a good mood,” outfielder Mike Yastrzemski said. “No moment alters that, whether it’s a big one, whether it’s a small one.”
Giants pitcher Logan Webb reacts to striking out Cody …read more
Source:: The Mercury News – Sports
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