That start got pushed to Friday night in Baltimore and fans got to see the new plan in place.
That is a plan of patience.
Mejia pitched three scoreless innings and was removed after only 50 pitches.
He is a pitcher who has never even logged 100 innings in a professional season, so the easing in makes sense.
The Indians ultimately lost the game, but a 3-1 loss does not fall on Mejia or the pitching staff.
Everyone on offense simply has to be better.
The most notable story of the night ends up being Mejia looking solid at the start of a game and how that affects the rotation moving forward.
A Fantastic, Albeit Short Debut
Mejia was promoted to Cleveland back in May and made three relief appearances before being given a chance to start.
Getting to make his first start against the Orioles was a nice bonus and much easier than what Eli Morgan had to deal with last week is his own debut.
Mejia had two strikeouts and only allowed one walk.
Not allowing any runs was the key and next time out he can have a new target goal for pitches in the game.
The Indians are weighing all their options and this was a good first step for Mejia.
There is no reason why he can’t continue to start, and that would be true even if Zach Plesac was healthy.
The only way he could get pushed out is if the Indians go out and acquire a starting pitcher.
However, another young arm could also take one of the spots up for grabs.
Another Pitcher Getting Stretched Out
An interesting bit of news came out before Friday’s game.
If the Indians don’t use Cal Quantrill tonight, he’ll start on Sunday.
— Mandy Bell (@MandyBell02) June 4, 2021
Cal Quantrill has spent most of the year as a reliever before he made his own short start back on Memorial Day.
That start was similar to what we saw from Mejia, as Quantrill went 3.2 innings and threw only 60 pitches.
He is now set to start Sunday’s game and it remains to be seen how far he can go.
The Indians are off Monday, which could mean it is a heavy bullpen day if Aaron Civale can have a nice start Saturday.
— Bally Sports Cleveland (@BallySportsCLE) June 1, 2021
But at some point a pitcher like Quantrill is going to have to be let loose if the Indians are ever planning to keep him in the rotation.
This is not a rebuilding team where wins and losses don’t matter, so at some point the bullpen cannot be relief upon every night with starters only throwing 50-60 pitches.
However, the above point is not new news to the organization.
Two starts of limited action before having no restrictions is not too crazy of an idea.
Ultimately, it can build confidence and also help the team’s chances of winning while we are still early in the season.
The hope now is that Quantrill can look good in his limited action, the same way Mejia did Friday night.