Cox Has Room For Improvement

JB Cox is no stranger to the closing role as he shut the door in the 2005 College World Series Championship game for the Texas Longhorns. Cox has temporarily taken over the closer role for Trenton while Justin Pope is on the Designed List with a sore arm. But no matter when Cox, who is usually Pope's setup man, comes out of the bullpen, he still has to work on keeping his command consistent.

"Sometimes his arm slot gets too low and it affects his command," said Thunder pitching coach Dave Eiland. "He is not consistent with his location and needs to command the strike zone better. He is very aware of that and has worked hard every day in improving in that area."

J. Brent Cox is 5-2 with a 1.94 ERA this season and is three-for-three in save attempts since filling in as closer. Cox has given up 23 walks and 55 strikeouts while giving up 48 hits in 69.2 innings pitched this season and while he has been wild at times, he has also shown flashes of dominance.

Just recently snapped, Cox had worked 26 consecutive scoreless innings over 15 outings and he knows that is exactly what he needs to do consistently.

"It just comes down to getting outs, no matter when I come into the game," said the 22-year-old right-hander, who was Yankees 2nd round draft pick in 2005. "I've been off and on and working hard all year. When I don't pitch for a few days, I have to make sure to do a bullpen and work on my arm angle."

Cox pitches from a three-quarters delivery and has a tendency to drop that arm too low and thus, misses down in the zone. Cox has been working on keeping that arm up higher, which then gives the ball more movement so it starts in the strike zone and then dips out, fooling batters. While Cox has struggled at times, Thunder manager Bill Masse says Cox has gotten a lot better.

"He is getting much better and people have to remember that he is only year out of college," Masse said. "For me, he is right on course."

During his senior year at Texas, Cox led the nation in saves (19) and was seventh in ERA (1.73). He is also the all-time record holder in appearances with 106 and second in saves with 24. Before his senior year, Cox was the set-up man for now Oakland A's closer Huston Street.

Cox has been with the Thunder the entire season so far and will likely stay there until he is consistently pitching well. Granted, nobody can be perfect every day, but Cox is working hard so that he is ready when his time comes to move on.

"Just being consistent is the biggest thing," Cox said. "I'm ready, but I just need to keep working and never stop learning."

Pinstripes Plus Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n\"Sometimes his arm slot gets too low and it affects his command,\" said Thunder pitching coach Dave Eiland. \"He is not consistent with his location and needs to command the strike zone better. He is very aware of that and has worked hard every day in improving in that area.\"
\r\n
\r\nJ. Brent Cox is 5-2 with a 1.94 ERA this season and is three-for-three in save attempts since filling in as closer. Cox has given up 23 walks and 55 strikeouts while giving up 48 hits in 69.2 innings pitched this season and while he has been wild at times, he has also shown flashes of dominance.
\r\n
\r\nJust recently snapped, Cox had worked 26 consecutive scoreless innings over 15 outings and he knows that is exactly what he needs to do consistently.
\r\n
\r\n\"It just comes down to getting outs, no matter when I come into the game,\" said the 22-year-old right-hander, who was Yankees 2nd round draft pick in 2005. \"I've been off and on and working hard all year. When I don't pitch for a few days, I have to make sure to do a bullpen and work on my arm angle.\"
\r\n
\r\nCox pitches from a three-quarters delivery and has a tendency to drop that arm too low and thus, misses down in the zone. Cox has been working on keeping that arm up higher, which then gives the ball more movement so it starts in the strike zone and then dips out, fooling batters. While Cox has struggled at times, Thunder manager Bill Masse says Cox has gotten a lot better.
\r\n
\r\n\"He is getting much better and people have to remember that he is only year out of college,\" Masse said. \"For me, he is right on course.\"
\r\n
\r\nDuring his senior year at Texas, Cox led the nation in saves (19) and was seventh in ERA (1.73). He is also the all-time record holder in appearances with 106 and second in saves with 24. Before his senior year, Cox was the set-up man for now Oakland A's closer Huston Street.
\r\n
\r\nCox has been with the Thunder the entire season so far and will likely stay there until he is consistently pitching well. Granted, nobody can be perfect every day, but Cox is working hard so that he is ready when his time comes to move on.
\r\n
\r\n\"Just being consistent is the biggest thing,\" Cox said. \"I'm ready, but I just need to keep working and never stop learning.\"
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