Colin Peluse Is Steadily Improving
When Colin Peluse needed to reshape his slider, the 23-year-old righthander went to the logical place—the Athletics' staff astrophysicist.
That would be Samantha Shultz, an analyst whose work assists in finding the most effective angles for breaking balls. A's general manager David Forst has made Shultz part of the organization’s innovative analytics department.
“She has been able to help us look at his vertical and horizontal breaks,” A’s pitching coordinator Gil Patterson said. “We’re able to look at the metrics and educate ourselves on how to shape the ball a little differently.
"With Colin’s work ethic and aptitude, he has really used it to his advantage. His slider and change have both gotten better.”
With the improved weapons, Peluse put together a breakthrough season at High-A Lansing. He went 7-3, 3.66 with 92 strikeouts through 86 innings.
“Colin has improved in every area month to month,” Patterson said.
Peluse averages 94 mph on his fastball. While it doesn't have much life, he has shown good command and the ability to move it around the strike zone. With the new shape of his two secondary pitches, he has made at-bats tougher for hitters. In one start, he threw 22 of 23 first-pitch strikes.
A 2019 ninth-rounder from Wake Forest, Peluse pitched effectively out of the bullpen as a freshman, then thrived as the Sunday starter as a sophomore, going 6-2, 3.87. As a junior, he tried to make changes in his delivery and endured a tough year as the Friday starter, going 3-8, 5.74, which lowered his draft status.
Oakland drafted him in the ninth round in 2019.
Peluse quickly became a favorite among A’s coaches because of his intense desire to improve. At 6-foot-3, 230 pounds, he earned the nickname, “The Beast,” and he has been a beast in both the workout room and with his studying of analytics.
Patterson says that what Peluse needs now are more innings and experience to continue to develop those astrophysically-shaped pitches against advanced hitters. When that happens, he could have a shot at a big league career.
— Low-A Stockton catcher Tyler Soderstrom has been slowed down by back soreness after a big start to the season. Soderstrom was Oakland's first-round pick in 2020 and has shown advanced hitting skills.
— High-A Lansing righthander Brady Basso was held out because of arm soreness. Basso had a big start to the season after moving from the bullpen to the rotation.