2009 Analysis: Lance Broadway
Early in September, loyal MetsToday reader “The DZA” made a content suggestion:
Seeing as the off season is looking to be more intriguing than the regular – would you perhaps give us a rundown of each player on the Mets as to how you think they have performed, and their subsequent projection (i.e. where they fit in or don’t fit in for the future)?
FYI, The DZA logs in from London — so MetsToday has officially achieved worldwide influence (!).
We’ll begin with the pitching staff, going in alphabetical order — that makes Lance Broadway first.
We were treated to only 16 appearances and 30.2 IP of Lance “Off Off” Broadway, so it’s hard to make an intelligent analysis.
After a spectacular college career at Texas Christian U., Broadway was drafted 15th overall in the 2005 by the White Sox and pegged for stardom. However, he was hittable from day one as a pro, and struggled with his control at both the AAA and MLB levels.
Broadway has a sinking fastball with impressive movement down and in to RH hitters, but it rarely gets far above 90 MPH and his command of it was inconsistent as a Met. His attempts at secondary stuff were similarly futile — a cut fastball/slider appeared to be the best of a bad lot.
One positive was his demeanor and composure on the mound; he was professional, competitive, and unflappable — he appears to have the heart of a lion. That can go a long way, as it’s something that few pitchers can develop if it isn’t already part of their makeup.
It’s unlikely that Broadway will one day live up to his billing as a star collegian and #1 pick. At 26 years old, time is running out quickly. To succeed at the MLB level with his high-80s / low 90s velocity, Broadway needs to have pinpoint control AND a plus off-speed pitch. Unfortunately he has displayed neither as a New York Met. That’s not to say he can’t still “figure it out”, and considering the Mets’ lack of depth in regard to pitching at the upper levels of the farm system, they have little choice but to start him in AAA Buffalo in 2010 and hope for the best. It probably makes sense to keep him in the starting rotation as a minor leaguer, so that he can spend more time and innings developing command of his fastball and a secondary pitch. I don’t see his velocity jumping the necessary 5-8 MPH to become a late-inning relief specialist, so his best shot is probably as a 5th starter / long reliever.
If indeed Lance can take the next step in his development, it would make a great story befitting of, um, Broadway (oh, bad one, huh?).
What’s your take on Lance Broadway? Post your analysis and opinion in the comments.
Next up is the immortal Elmer Dessens.