So apparently he goes by ‘Edward’ outside the U.S., but he’ll always be ‘Bubbie’ to all of us Americanos. And let’s face it: Edward Buzachero doesn’t have quite the ring that ‘Bubbie Buzachero’ has. The Caribbean Series is flamboyant in nature, from the umpires’ mechanics on calls to the extra-loud tunes being piped through the PA system. And somehow, a guy named Edward who pitches for the hometown Carolina club . . . well, it just doesn’t fit.
Buzachero was one of the main reasons Puerto Rico has a 2-0 record in the Caribbean Series, after working out of a bases loaded, 1-out jam against Venezuela on Saturday and then getting through the final two innings unscathed.
A 23rd-round pick of the Blue Jays in 2002, Buzachero was dealt to Cleveland before last season for lefthander Brian Tallet. The 25-year-old righthander went 8-3, 2.72 in 81 innings at Double-A Akron last season, and we caught up with a veteran National League scout to give us the lowdown on where Buzachero stands development-wise heading into spring training on a club seemingly loaded with bullpen arms.
“Development-wise he’s kind of different,” the scout said. “His velocity was better in college (Tennessee Tech) than it was when I saw him last year or now. But it’s winter ball, so you really have no idea where he could be, or if he could be back to those 94s and 95s you saw back then. He’s 88-89 and topping out at 91 now.
“The velocity isn’t quite what it used to be–here, at least–but the breaking stuff is much better. I like his slider better than his curveball now. It darts down with very good depth and he commands his fastball to both sides.
“But he’s a guy who’s one of those undersized righthanders with decent stuff. I think he’s got a chance (to get to the big leagues) but I really don’t know if he sticks. Cleveland called up (Tom) Mastny last year for some bullpen work and Buzachero’s pure stuff is better than that . . . and he’s always had the stones to get out of situations like he did tonight. If they called up Mastny, Buzachero can’t be too far behind.”