ST. PETERSBURG -- Chris Archer is off to a slow start. But the Rays' ace and his manager both see better days ahead.Archer will start against the Twins on Friday night at Tropicana Field. He'll carry a 1-1 record with a 7.84 ERA into the start after allowing seven earned
ST. PETERSBURG -- Chris Archer is off to a slow start. But the Rays' ace and his manager both see better days ahead.
Archer will start against the Twins on Friday night at Tropicana Field. He'll carry a 1-1 record with a 7.84 ERA into the start after allowing seven earned runs in four innings against the Phillies.
"I thought the other day in the Philly game, there might have been a little of, not letting it loose for whatever reason early on," manager Kevin Cash said. "Good pitchers get to being good through different avenues. Some are location guys. Some are athletic and power guys. I think Arch probably falls more into that be athletic, be powerful. I'm confident we're going to see his next start where he's going to go out there and let it go from pitch one."
Archer told reporters he's flushed his last start.
"It's already gone," Archer said. "It's been gone. Been gone since the second inning of that game. If you make a couple of hundred starts in the big leagues, you're going to have ones that are really, really good and ones that are no good.
"I've had other tough starts. Just understand it's a long season. And after all that [stuff] happened in the second inning, I actually threw pretty well. I understand coming out of the game because of a high volume of pitches. But I wish I could have stayed out there, because I kind of started getting into a groove. And that's continued, like in my bullpens and throwing sessions. So I'm feeling good going into Friday."
Archer has historically been close to neutral against righties and lefties. For example, last season lefties hit .263 against him and righties hit .232. This season, righties are hitting .178 while lefties are hitting .450.
Archer didn't read anything into the disparity.
"I haven't put too much thought into it, because it is only a couple of games," Archer said. "I think just making higher quality pitches. You go back and look, and it's not like the pitches that have been capitalized have been good pitches. So [the answer is] making higher quality pitches to both hands."
A popular line of dialogue regarding Archer has been the opinion that he needs to throw his changeup more often to offset his fastball-slider combination. Cash isn't buying that Archer needs to throw more changeups.
"I don't agree with that," Cash said. "He's a fastball-slider pitcher. He can use it as he wants. But I certainly don't agree with the fact that the changeup needs to be in place of his fastball or slider. And he doesn't either.
"I think [the changeup is] a nice pitch to have. Especially when he's facing lineups that see him over and over. That's a great pitch to mix in. But Chris Archer has made a career with a fastball-slider. He's going to continue to have a good career with the fastball-slider."
Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.