Before the Miami Marlins began their five-game road series against the Washington Nationals, they called up top prospect Sixto Sanchez.
In the second game of Saturday’s doubleheader, Sixto would make his MLB debut and Miami would go onto secure his first career win. He threw for five innings, posted four strikeouts and didn’t allow any walks.
Sanchez may have struggled in the fifth inning, but was looking like he was in mid-season form.
Here are three key factors the Marlins organization and fans can take away from Sixto’s stellar performance.
1– Triple digit pitching
While Miguel Rojas was regaining his strength at the Jupiter Site, he posted in a tweet stating, “Sixto said welcome back to me with a 98 to 100 MPH fastball for 6 innings. He was impressive.”
Miami fans got to see that speed for five innings with Sixto giving the fans what they want: a pitcher with a very quick pitch. Miami hasn’t seen a pitcher that can reach 100+MPH in years.
2 — Magical throws
The Nationals got a first-row experience of what Sixto can do to a hot-hitting lineup. With his fastball being his big specialty, he also has massive speed and pitch control.
The 22-year-old showed off his beautiful breaking ball, slider, change-up and curveball in all of his strikeouts. Sixto’s arsenal of pitches looks super similar, which is common for all high-speed pitchers. With a curveball, a pitcher usually puts his arm on an angle, making the ball curve and confuse the pitcher.
When looking at his film, Sixto’s pitches all look the same. But when it comes to a change-up/slider, he angles his arm even more, letting that ball go low to the ground without losing any momentum.
3 — Another starter position filled?
With Sandy Alcantara, Caleb Smith and Jose Urena still recovering from being infected by the clubhouse COVID-19 outbreak, Sixto could use this time to develop further and possibly win him a starting position for the rest of the season.
Jose Urena hasn’t pitched a game this season due to the outbreak, and with let down performances in the last two seasons, Sixto could be just what the Marlins need to make a playoff run.