LOS ANGELES -- Rockies manager Walt Weiss said righty reliever Matt Belisle, who has been an up-and-down 0-2 with a 6.30 ERA, simply needs sharper command.
Belisle, 33, who gave up an eighth-inning leadoff home run to the Giants' Hector Sanchez in Wednesday afternoon's 12-10 loss, is learning to pitch with top fastball velocity that has dipped -- possibly because of his 313 appearances in the last four-plus seasons, including 11 this season. But the key is whether it's the fastball, sinker, changeup or slider, keeping it in a good location, Weiss said.
"Most of the time, it comes down to command," Weiss said. "You can't throw balls in the middle of the plate. I don't care who you are. If you throw 95 or above you can get a little more breathing room, but it's about command.
"I think the slider can be a put-away pitch for Matty. I've seen him get that slider to the back foot of left-handed hitters this year. I've seen him throw some real good ones. It's about consistency, and fastball command is a very good key for Matty, pitching to both sides of the plate. Pitching in with his fastball is key, too."
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less