“I got two of the three strikeouts with (the changeup),” Hughes told Mark Feinsand of the NY Daily News. “It was more of an ahead-in-the-count pitch today, which was a little weird, or an even-count pitch. It’s normally designed for fastball counts, but it was nice to get that pitch going this early.”
A lot more attention was paid to this last preseason. Hughes had poor results with the changeup overall last year, but he did throw it 6.5 percent of the time, the highest percentage of changeups thrown in his career.
“It was very good,” Russell Martin told Chad Jennings of the Journal News after Wednesday game. “He wasn’t as consistent early on with it, but as the game went along it was getting better and better. He got in some crucial situations and he made some good pitches. … I think he’s just getting confidence the more he throws it.”
Hughes has come into camp in better shape this year and hasn’t had to deal with early velocity concerns. Maybe since he isn’t so focused on his fastball this year he can made some serious headway with his change.
“It seems like (last spring) was so long ago, to think back on how I was feeling,” he said. “I know that (the ball’s) coming out better than it was. For me that’s kind of one building block of what I need to do. The changeup needs to come along and the cutter and everything else, but physically I feel better.”