Hutchison frustrated by inconsistency

Hutchison frustrated by inconsistency

TORONTO -- Drew Hutchison is frustrated by his inability to execute pitches, which he's convinced is the main reason behind his inconsistency this season.

It's a refrain he repeated to reporters prior to Monday's game against the Twins, a day after he endured his worst start of 2014 when he pitched a season-low three innings and gave up five runs and six hits in a 5-0 loss to the Cardinals.

The 23-year-old, who missed the entire 2013 season recovering from Tommy John surgery, insists this frustrating inconsistency -- which saw him at his best a week ago against Detroit, and at his worst in yesterday's outing -- isn't due to any physical ailment or fatigue. Hutchison said he's feels fine every time he takes the ball.

"I'm not trying to go out there and be a tough guy and say I'm not feeling this, or I'm not feeling that," he said. "Physically I've felt the exact same every time I've taken the ball, which is why it is frustrating."

But the statistics that highlight his struggles with consistency are worth noting. On regular rest in between starts, the right-hander has fared significantly worse than when he's given at least an extra day.

With regular rest, his ERA is 5.93 (20 earned runs in 30 1/3 innings) with seven home runs, 15 walks and 22 strikeouts; and when given at least an extra day, his ERA is 2.62 (13 earned runs in 44 2/3 innings), with eight walks and 45 strikeouts.

His home-road splits are also in stark contrast of one another. At Rogers Centre, he's posted an 8.72 ERA (21 earned runs in 21 2/3 innings), with seven homers, 13 walks and 21 strikeouts. But on the road, he's been lights-out with a 2.03 ERA (12 earned runs in 53 1/3 innings), three home runs, 10 walks and 46 strikeouts over eight starts. That's the third-best road ERA among starters in the American League.

It's worth mentioning that four of his six starts that came with regular rest were also home games, and Rogers Centre tends to be a hitter-friendly park. And given the relatively small sample size, it's reasonable to think those numbers will eventually even out. But even Hutchison seems perplexed by them.

"It's one of those things you look at and say, 'Wow' to yourself," he said. "I think when I first came up in 2012 it was the complete opposite. I was really good at home and terrible on the road. It just works out that way. With eight or nine starts on the road, maybe that has something to do with it. I've had more innings on the road than [at home]. You have a couple of plunkers and it goes one way or the other."

Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.