As good as it gets: Seddon is on a roll
July 27, 2012
Chris Seddon has been a force on the mound for the Columbus Clippers over the past two months, and the 28-year-old left-hander’s pitching prowess was perhaps never more evident that during his third-most recent start.
On July 16 against the Louisville Bats, Seddon flirted with a perfect game. The left-hander did not give up a hit or walk through six frames, and headed into the top of the seventh inning at Huntington Park nine outs away from recording the second perfect game in Clippers’ history.
Unlike most athletes who say they rarely think about stats or personal accolades in the heat of competition, perfection was something Seddon thought was possible as he was mowing down Louisville hitter after hitter.
“The third inning, it hit me, ‘oh hey, I got something special going,’ that was cool. As I was out there pitching I just tried to put that in the back of my mind and get guys out,” said Seddon.
Seddon lost the perfect game in the first at-bat of the seventh inning. Louisville center fielder Dennis Phipps smacked the second pitch of the frame over the outstretching arms of Columbus third baseman Jared Goedert and into left field for a single. Perfect game over; shot at history gone.
While his name won’t be appearing in the Columbus record book—not yet, at least—Seddon’s performance that night, and more so his work over his last 10 starts, is definitely noteworthy.
In his last 10 outings, Seddon is 6-2 with a 2.62 ERA. The left-hander has averaged just over seven innings per start during that span and held opponents to a .228 batting average. The recent stretch is one of, if not Seddon’s most dominant of his eight-year professional career.
“I’m just trying to put the pressure on hitters. I’m trying to attack the strike zone, not walk guys, not give up anything to guys. I’m trying to get quick outs,” said Seddon.
Attack hitters he has. Seddon boasts a staggering 5.9/1 strikeout-to-walk ratio over the past 10 games, and has a 1.12 WHIP that is the fifth lowest in the International League.
Thanks in part to his recent success, Seddon now ranks among the IL’s leaders in many other categories as well. His 11 wins are tied for first in the IL. His 3.44 ERA is 10th best and the 123 innings he’s thrown are the third most of any starter.
Seddon’s effort on the mound has garnered him praise from his manager, Mike Sarbaugh.
“He’s been very consistent. He’s been very good for us all year long,” Sarbaugh said.
With MLB rosters set to expand in September, Seddon could be in line for a call-up. That’s the goal for the rest of the season, Seddon said.
“I think for everybody you want to get to that next level and play at the next level. Just continue to do what I’m doing and hopefully get the call,” he said.
A fifth-round draft pick by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 2001 MLB Draft, Seddon has spent time in the majors before. He made his major league debut in 2007 with the then-Florida Marlins, appearing in seven games and finishing with a 8.83 ERA. Seddon was a little better his second time around, going 1-0 with a 5.64 ERA in 14 appearances with Seattle in 2010.
His brief stints taught him what it takes to succeed when facing big-league hitters.
“Just how they can approach me as hitters and how I should approach them pitching wise. Really just to read hitters and see what they’re giving me back on the pitchers I throw,” Seddon said.
Andrew Holleran is a third-year journalism student at The Ohio State University. You can follow him on Twitter @andrewjholleran or reach him via e-mail at email@example.com.