How did he get here?: Undrafted free agent, signed July 2009
Stats: 6'3", 195 lbs, Throws: Left
Age as of April 1, 2011: 24
Birthplace/Hometown: Winston Salem, NC
Men of the Match: 1
Career (2009, GCL-Greeneville cumulative)
What happened? Garrett Bullock flat-out dominated the Appalachian League, that's what happened. Bullock had a break-out year in an App League reprise that came after a season in which he had already thrown a full season at Wake Forest.
His 1.26 ERA was the fourth-best in the Appy League - and his 43IP were 9.1IP more than the next-highest total in the three pitchers preceding him. Granted, ERA isn't the best way to judge a reliever, but 43IP are a decent indication that he limits those runs.
Last year, we noted that Bullock was going to need to work on those walks, and that's exactly what he did, walking over three batters fewer per nine innings than in 2009.
All this resulted in Bullock's being named Astros County's Greeneville Pitcher of the Year.
What went right?
What didn't? Let's start with August. It's been our experience that pitchers their first full season after college see a little bit of a jump in numbers towards the end of the season (we'll try to back that up at some point down the road), but that didn't happen to Bullock. In eight August appearances (21IP), Bullock allowed 19H/2ER, 19K:6BB, holding hitters to a .257 average.
Pitching with runners on. With runners on, Bullock allowed 15H with 25K:10BB in 25IP, and a .185 BAA. With RISP, Bullcok allowed 7H, with 15K:8BB in 15.2IP, and a .140 BAA.
Throwing to LHBs. Bullock allowed 19 baserunners (15H/4BB), getting 49 outs against lefties, and only two ER.
Groundballs. Bullock had a 1.47 groundout:flyout ratio on the season, including 2.20 w/RISP and 2.18 against lefties.
What went wrong?
If we had to pick something, July was a little bit rough - comparatively. He allowed 18H/4ER, with 13K:7BB in 15.1IP, and a .290 BAA before righting the ship in August.
Bases Empty. We talked about how shutdown he was with runners on, but that's partialy because he allowed 24 hits and four walks in 18IP with the bases empty, allowing hitters a .308 batting average.
Appy Astros says:
Bullock is able to keep runners close with an excellent pick off move that he refined to reduce the balks called on him. Bullock was too old for the Appy at 24. He was promoted to Tri Cities at the end of the season but didn't get to pitch. With his age, being a lefty with a good pick off move and his ability to keep the ball down (no home runs in a combined 62 1/3 IP for his career, I could see him landing in Lancaster next season but Lexington might be more likely.
I can't see Bullock simply moving up to Tri-City, and think he'll be in Lexington. A good stint to begin the season in Lexington, and he's probably off to Lancaster.