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Duke's up: von Schamann fans 1006/11/2013 12:58 AM ET
By Jake Seiner / Special to MLB.com
Hector Berrios wasn't about to let Duke von Schamann ease into his new surroundings.
The Chattanooga pitching coach crossed paths with von Schamann at Class A Great Lakes in 2012. When the latter was promoted Sunday to the Double-A Lookouts, Berrios didn't even wait for his first start before he began making suggestions.
"He's pretty familiar with me," von Schamann said. "We talked about some stuff [on Monday], and that had me pretty confident going into the game."
Berrios adjusted the right-hander's mechanics and the results indicate he pushed the correct buttons. The 2012 15th round Draft pick struck out a career-high 10 in his 2013 Double-A debut, allowing a run on three hits over six innings in the Lookouts' eventual 2-1 loss to the Jackson Generals.
The Texas Tech University product went 8-2 with a 4.34 ERA in 11 starts with Class A Advanced Rancho Cucamonga prior to the promotion Sunday. He struck out 50 and walked 18 in 64 1/3 innings, including a nine-strikeout performance on May 26.
The son of former NFL kicker Uwe von Schamann, the hurler worked with Berrios before the game on generating more power from his lower body.
"It's just more about using my legs," said the 6-foot-5, 220-pounder. "I was staying a little too tall and drifting forward through my windup. I want to consistently stay back so I'm leading with my hips and using my legs to create more velocity."
The Edmond, Okla., native said the tweak helped him add a mile per hour or so to his fastball and improved his command of all four of his offerings. His fastball sat in the 90-93 mph range Monday, and he mixed it effectively with his changeup, curveball and slider.
"The best thing working for me today was that I was keeping guys off balanced because I was really throwing all four of them," he said. "I was throwing strikes with every pitch."
The 22-year-old was most pleased with his command, noting that he threw 53 of his 63 pitches for strikes.
"I got ahead early, and then I was using all four of my pitches," he said. "I'm normally not a strikeout pitcher, but I was able to get ahead and then I could use all four."
The performance comes about a year after the Dodgers selected the former Red Raider in the 15th round. The right-hander posted a 2.08 ERA for Texas Tech, the third-lowest at the school in the aluminum bat era.
He made 12 starts for Class a Great Lakes after signing, posting a 3.22 ERA. At the end of the season, Los Angeles bumped him up to Chattanooga, where he allowed a run on three hits over five innings.
"It was good to have that in my mind coming back here to pitch," he said. "It was good for my confidence, knowing I could pitch at this level."
Chattanooga lost the game when Jackson's Julio Morban singled in two runs in the bottom of the seventh. The Generals swept the doubleheader, downing the Lookouts, 5-4, in the first game.
Jackson ended the first game with a triple play. With runners at first and second, Brian Cavazos-Galvez lined out to shortstop Gabriel Noriega. The shortstop stepped on second after snagging the liner, doubling up Miguel Rojas, then tossed the ball to first base to get Joc Pederson.
Los Angeles' No. 3 prospect Pederson left the second game in the middle of the first inning. The team declined to comment on his status.