Count Dan McLaughlin among the rest of us who weren’t super pumped about Miles Mikolas right out of the gate, as the Cardinals broadcaster wasn’t quite sure what he was looking at during Mikolas’ first spring training start.
“We went to break in the second inning or whenever he was pitching and I said, ‘You gotta be bleepin’ me with this,'” Danny Mac recently told ‘The Bernie Miklasz Show’ in his weekly spot.
“I said, ‘Are you kidding me with this!?’ I’ll just be honest; he looked awful that first spring training game and he wasn’t much better the second one,” McLaughlin added. “I’m thinking, ‘If this is all he’s got, then what are we looking at on tape and in Asia?’ And now I look at him and I can’t wait for him to pitch and I think he’s the best pitcher I’ve seen in the league this year. So, tells you what I know. He’s been awesome.”
Mikolas added more awesomeness Monday night, tossing a complete game, four-hit shutout against Kansas City and showcasing the pinpoint control he’s had all regular season.
McLaughlin thinks the Lizard King’s spring troubles may have been due to some butterflies in the breadbasket.
“I think two things were going on. Number one, he was in his hometown of Jupiter and I think he was nervous in front of family and friends. And the other part was he was trying to make an impression with his new team,” Danny Mac said.
“To his credit, he didn’t deviate from what was making him successful in Japan,” he added. “He’s also changed his motion a little bit. He’s more direct towards the plate, but he can throw any pitch in any quadrant for a strike. [Monday] night, in the ninth inning with two outs, on a borderline pitch to Moustakas, that was his first walk at home this year…That was over a hundred batters he had not walked.”
So, you can count the Cardinals play-by-play man just as panicked as the rest of us when Mikolas was getting lit up down in Jupiter. Things have turned around nicely since though.
You can hear Danny Mac’s entire weekly interview below. Stay tuned to 101Sports.com and 101 ESPN for plenty of Cardinals analysis every day.