Charlie Morton rounding his disgusting curveball into shape for a Postseason run

Charlie Morton seems to have turned a corner with his mechanics. Here's why he could be getting hot at just the right time.
New York Yankees v Atlanta Braves
New York Yankees v Atlanta Braves / Matthew Grimes Jr./Atlanta Braves/GettyImages
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The Atlanta Braves have World Series aspirations with the best record in baseball and one of the greatest offenses ever assembled. The biggest concern they have heading into the postseason is the starting pitching rotation. Is it deep enough? Can it stand toe to toe with other World Series contenders? Has age caught up with Charlie Morton?

A lot is riding on Charlie Morton's performance the rest of the way. In fact, he was a huge factor in both of the following articles.

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Morton had been struggling over his past few starts. Between July 19-Aug 6, Morton had a four-start stretch that had everyone scratching their heads and wondering if he was done. Now, Morton has had streaks like this in the past, but the timing was not good as we head toward the postseason.

Over those four starts, Morton pitched 19.2 innings, gave up 16 earned runs (7.32 ERA), hit three batters, allowed a .412 on-base percentage to opposing hitters, an .882 OPS, and walked 15 guys. Again, that's 15 walks in 19.2 innings. That doesn't even include the seven-walk outing he had against the Mets in his next start. If you add that one, Morton had 22 walks over five consecutive starts.

Despite walking seven against the Mets on August 11, Morton still managed to spin five scoreless innings while allowing just three hits. Morton said he started to feel his delivery toward the end of that outing.

Where Was Charlie Morton's Head During Terrible stretch?

"“If you’re driving a manual and you’re just learning to drive, you’re thinking about where the turn signal is, where your right foot is, where your left foot is, where your eyes and where your hands are,” Morton said. “It’s just not a good place to be. It’s kind of like that with pitching. If you’re thinking about your delivery too much, that’s where you can get to. I won’t say that’s where I was. But I was starting to get there.”"

Charlie Morton, MLB.com

Last night was the next start after Morton said something clicked against the Mets. Morton was spectacular, pitching six shutout innings while allowing four hits and just one walk, while striking out 10. If his curveball looked like it was popping, it was. Now Morton's curve already ranks in the 97th percentile in spin rate, but it was even better last night.

Morton threw the curve 44 times with a maximum spin rate of 3275, which is nearly 200 RPMs over his season average of 3,081. Remember, that average is one of the best in the league.

Kirby Yates had this to say following Morton's dominant start against the Yankees on August 16th.

"“When Chuck is on and he has that curveball going, it’s fun to watch,” Braves reliever Kirby Yates said. “It’s put your feet up and just enjoy, because it’s wicked, man. He throws 95 to 96 [mph] with a curveball from hell.” "

Kirby Yates

Let's hope Charlie has figured it out and is at the beginning of one of his great runs. Morton has the experience and is a proven commodity in the postseason. If Morton is at the top of his game then it gives the Braves the kind of top-three rotation that can lead you to World Series.

Other Braves Reads

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Kirby Yates Bouncing Back After Missing Most of 3 Years

5 Best Braves' Bats Since All-Star Break