John Smoltz sees ‘dominant, frontline starter’ in Mariners’ James Paxton

May 10, 2018, 12:26 PM
Hall of Famer John Smoltz sees similarities between James Paxton and Andy Pettitte. (AP)...
Hall of Famer John Smoltz sees similarities between James Paxton and Andy Pettitte. (AP)

One of the people Mariners pitcher James Paxton was most excited to hear from after his no-hitter was former Yankees great Andy Pettitte, as he told Brock and Salk on Wednesday. Interestingly enough, another legendary former pitcher sees a similarity between those two left-handers.

M’s pitching coach was in no mood for jokes during Paxton’s no-hitter

“I think he has a unique ability to throw a baseball with a heavy arsenal of pitches, (and) he’s tough to see because of the way he throws,” Baseball Hall of Famer and FOX Sports MLB analyst John Smoltz told Brock and Salk. “He reminds me a lot – about three-quarters of his rotation reminds me of Andy Pettitte. Andy Pettitte did not have the velocity that (Paxton has), but we all know what he was able to do and the longevity of his career.”

Smoltz has a high opinion of Paxton and thinks that it’s only a matter of staying healthy for the Mariners’ Big Maple to take his place among the top pitchers in the game today.

“I’m a big fan of his,” Smoltz said of Paxton. “I think he’s one of the most dominant pitchers that has yet to be kinda thrust into prominence… He has all the attributes of a dominant, frontline starter. It’s just really all about health.”

Smoltz thinks that the health factor with Seattle’s entire starting rotation, not just Paxton specifically, is all that has held the Mariners back from breaking through into the playoffs in recent years.

“For the Seattle Mariners that’s really what it’s been – for their lack of playoff appearances, you can probably say because the starting rotation has yet to develop and be healthy. It’s not that they don’t have the pieces.”

You can hear the full interview with Smoltz in this podcast of Brock and Salk’s second hour Thursday.

Paxton praises teammates for ‘surreal’ no-hitter

Brock and Salk podcast

Brock and Salk

Mariners J.P. Crawford...
Shannon Drayer

Dipoto: How Mariners plan to handle rest for J.P., pitchers’ workloads

Mariners insider Shannon Drayer details Thursday's Jerry Dipoto Show, including insight on shortstop J.P. Crawford and the starting rotation.
14 hours ago
Seahawks draft Drew Sanders...
Brandon Gustafson

NFL Draft expert Zierlein: Freaky defenders that fit Seahawks

Which defenders could the Seahawks draft to help their defensive front?'s Lance Zierlein broke down several names on Brock & Salk.
14 hours ago
Seahawks Will Levis...
Brandon Gustafson

QB Will Levis to Seahawks? Brock & Salk react to Kiper’s mock draft

ESPN's Mel Kiper has the Seahawks selecting Kentucky QB Will Levis fifth overall in his first mock draft. Brock & Salk take a closer look.
14 hours ago
Seahawks DeForest Buckner...
Brandon Gustafson

Could Colts DT DeForest Buckner be a trade fit for the Seahawks?

Could the Seahawks swing a trade for an established D-lineman? If so, Brock Huard thinks DeForest Buckner could be a fit.
2 days ago
Seahawks draft Tyree Wilson...
Brandon Gustafson

Huard on Seahawks Draft: Why DE Tyree Wilson is being mocked at 5

Texas Tech DE Tyree Wilson is a common name for the Seahawks in mock drafts. Brock Huard breaks down why Wilson is a hot name.
3 days ago
Seahawks draft prospect Dorian Thompson-Robinson...
Brent Stecker

Seahawks Draft: UCLA’s DTR could be this year’s Brock Purdy

Could the Seahawks find the next Brock Purdy in this year's NFL Draft? Brock Huard breaks down why that player may be UCLA's Dorian Thompson-Robinson.
4 days ago
John Smoltz sees ‘dominant, frontline starter’ in Mariners’ James Paxton