Dustin May made his second start for the Los Angeles Dodgers since returning from Tommy John surgery, but did not find the same level of success from his 2022 season debut.
The 24-year-old earned a win with five shutout innings with five strikeouts and just one hit against the Miami Marlins at Dodger Stadium one week ago, but he took the loss at loanDepot Park on Saturday. May threw six innings but gave up two runs on five hits with just four strikeouts.
While it was still a strong outing for the right-hander, he was out-dueled by Marlins ace’ Sandy Alcántara, and he made a costly mistake in the sixth inning that came back to haunt them when the winning run scored.
Overall, May was unhappy with his execution throughout the game, but said he’s already looking forward to his next outing, via SportsNet LA:
“I thought it was OK today. Execution was pretty poor in a lot of places for execution to be needed. Wish I could take the groundball error back on my end, but can’t do that. Just got to look forward.”
May attributed his struggles executing to not fully controlling his emotions when on the mound in some of the game’s bigger moments, which didn’t allow him to fully throw and follow through on his pitches. That is something May will look to correct in his next bullpen session:
“Just being able to get out in front on pitches. A lot of stuff was just kind of spinning out of hand or yanked. Just trying to not get over-amped up in situations where I shouldn’t.”
Despite those few issues, May still looked highly impressive in his first two outings and the Dodgers are surely happy with the results. In 11 innings, he has posted a 1.64 ERA with 13 strikeouts and a 0.82 WHIP.
May should compete for a spot in the Dodgers’ postseason rotation with continued results like that, but his competition will become even deeper as Clayton Kershaw is set to return next week.
May working on confidence in changeup
May’s long layoff following Tommy John surgery included several months of not being able to throw a baseball, but once cleared to do so, part of the recovery process entailed working on his changeup.
It was a pitch May went into the 2022 season having thrown it just 50 times in his young career as he relied on a sinker nearly 40% of the time, curveball (22.8%), four-seam fastball (19%) and cutter (18.5%).
May explained that using the Tommy John rehab process to work on his changeup was part of an effort to become more confident in the pitch.
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