Justin Steele has been working on his changeup for a while now and he has thrown it very little to this point — only 2% of his total MLB pitches — but that may be about to change…up. The results were a little shaky after adopting Cole Hamels‘ grip in 2019, mainly because injuries prevented Steele from really finding a groove.
Justin Steele's offspeed during today's live BP. pic.twitter.com/YVU1CzboYO
— Marquee Sports Network (@WatchMarquee) February 21, 2023
The offspeed stuff looked much better last season, though the sample is so small that any impact was nominal. Now, however, he appears to have perfected it to the extent that he’s comfortable throwing a change left-on-left for both called and swinging strikes. This looks nasty.
If he’s able to keep throwing it like this, he can bump that usage up quite a bit to keep hitters off the four-seam that got hit pretty hard at times. Paired with a filthy slider and a sinker that helped him generate grounders at more than a 51% clip, Steele has the makings of a staff ace.