Cove Chatter 100: #18

Josh Osich | LHP, 25 yo, 6-2, 230 | 2011 Draft – 6 | (A+) 42.1 IP, 2.45 ERA, 12 SV, 7.1 h/9, 2.2 bb/9, 10.8 k/9 | (AA) 29.2 IP, 4.85 ERA, 3 SV, 7.9 h/9, 3.6 bb/9, 8.5 k/9

The top lefty reliever in the organization (in the opinion of this blogger). Former 6th round pick was an electric starter at Oregon State, where he threw a no-hitter while outpitching UCLA’s Trevor Bauer in 2011. Osich has only started two games as a professional, but has spent most of his time in a closer’s role. He was sent back to San Jose for 2013, and was starting to torch hitters by mid-season, when he and Cody Hall were summoned to Richmond. Osich didn’t see the same success initially in the Eastern League as Hall, but eventually settled down to a 2.84 ERA over 12 August appearances. I’ve heard that his usual mid-90’s velocity started to fade a bit down the stretch, but that shouldn’t be all that surprising after a long season of work. I remember reading a tweet from a fellow San Jose pitcher that he was throwing an easy 97 back in May.

Osich has as much raw stuff as any pitcher in the organization, with above average control, but he’s really been an injury case throughout most of his playing career (Tommy John in 2010, elbow issues before the draft, only 32 IP in 2012). To me, he seems to have a very violent delivery. I have no idea if that’s contributed to his arm injuries at all, but it certainly could have had some impact. His body of work in 2013 has to be a very welcome sight for the front office.

He’s supposedly ticketed for MLB spring training, and the Giants could use another lefty in the pen. He’ll most likely start the year in either Fresno or Richmond, but the organization has to be hoping his fastball – and arm – are ready to roll come late February.

They said it: “Osich features a mid 90’s fastball, two excellent off-speed pitches and as a left-hander, could move quickly next year if he excels in Richmond and/or Fresno.” ~ Joe Ritzo, San Jose Giants broadcaster

Osich video:

Osich college:

Image

(Barry Cola, San Jose Giants)

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8 thoughts on “Cove Chatter 100: #18”

    1. I sure hope so, if he can stay healthy. I’d read somewhere a while back that they were inviting him to MLB camp, as with Law… I’m not sure about Cody Hall. But man, there’s going to be some heat being thrown around that complex this spring!

  1. I’ve loved the pick of Osich, I agree, good call on top lefty, and I totally agree with Foothills assessments. If not for Law, he could be our top reliever period. As you can see, I’ve been really excited about him and his potential.

    I would add on that while he was a starter before, in an interview earlier last season, he stated that if it was up to him, he wanted to be a reliever, he really enjoyed that. And given his repeated injury issues, he must know at some level that his chances for a long MLB career is greatly improved by being a reliever than by being a starter, no matter how good he is. And given how good our rotation is and how many good starters are rising now, he might have to wait years for a chance, while he could probably theoretically reach the majors this year should the need for bullpen arms become high for whatever reasons, particularly given the age and injury history of our top relievers.

    With him and Law, not that they are alike with these old-time Giants, but I really loved the combo we had with Lavelle and Moffitt, a lefty and right closers duo, and they probably have the ability to do something like that. And Bochy did do that to a small extent, going to Lopez for the save instead of Romo, before, though not as much in 2013. As much as I like Hembree, he has had his struggles making the big show, and Law has just flew up the system and has great command and control, as well as domination, the big three for any pitcher. It will be very interesting how everything falls out in terms of roles among Law, Osich, and Hembree.

    1. Agreed. Went with the MLB experience of Dolis and Gutierrez instead. I’m still not really sure how De Paula is a better candidate for a 40-man spot than Osich, or Hall for that matter. There’s going to be a surprise in that bullpen battle, I can tell you that. When the smoke clears, I’d think a couple arms will need to be cut. No way they fit them all in Fresno.

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