Chen's new changeup grip yields strong results

Seeking greater difference in velocity compared to fastball, O's lefty tries 'palmball'

Chen's new changeup grip yields strong results

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles lefty Wei-Yin Chen pitched three scoreless innings in Tuesday's 3-1 win over the Yankees, showcasing a new changeup that he hopes can be part of his repertoire in 2015.

"Last year, I was throwing a circle change," Chen said through his interpreter. "This year, I'll try a grip that's more like a palmball, and hopefully that will get my velocity more consistent. I'm going to try to see how it works."  

Chen said he will throw more changeups than he typically does in Spring Training, as he's been working with pitching coach Dave Wallace on establishing more of a difference in velocity between his change and fastball. As for the grip, it's something that Chen was taught by special assignment pitching instructor Ramon Martinez.

Chen discusses his outing

"So far, it's not bad," Chen said of the new grip. "My velocity when I'm throwing my circle change, my body tends to fly open, but this year, with this grip, it doesn't. So far, it's pretty good."  

On Tuesday, in his second spring start, Chen allowed one hit and one walk, while striking out two. He hasn't allowed a run in five Grapefruit League innings.

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.