The way Mark Buehrle sees it, the pitch-speed display should be recalibrated tonight when he takes on Jamie Moyer at Marlins Park. Instead of glowing red whenever a blazing fastball tops 95 miles per hour, it needs to be adjusted downward for the two slow-throwers.
"They're going to have to turn it down," Buehrle said, laughing. "Light it up red when it's 75 or higher."
Even then the thing might not glow "hot" very often, not with Moyer and Buehrle doing their thing. According to FanGraphs, Moyer's fastball this season is averaging 77.7 miles per hour. Buehrle's? A shade over 84. And that's their fastball. Their other pitches clock in even slower. Never mind a fancy radar gun. A metronome would work just fine with these two. Or a sundial.
No wonder Buehrle was chomping at the bit just thinking about his matchup with the ageless Moyer, who at 49 years of age became the oldest pitcher ever to win a major league game when he registered a victory last month for the Colorado Rockies. Moyer turns 50 on Nov. 18.
"I finally throw harder than the other starter!," Buehrle said. "We're going to turn it on. We're going to be lighting it up, like there's no tomorrow."
Joked Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen: "It's going to be Nolan Ryan and Steve Carlton -- gas! I know Buerhle's going to look like he's throwing 100."
Buerhle says teammates sometimes tease him about his low-octane velocity.
"I've been called Moyer before, guys joking around," Buehrle said. "They'll say, 'Your speed's getting close to his, or whatever. But it's what I've been dealt with. You see (Justin) Verlander. He throws a no-hitter every time. Well, if you had that kind of stuff, of course you should go out there and dominate every game with that stuff. I'd die to have that kind of stuff.
"That's what amazes me (about Moyer). One, him being that old. And, two, throwing what he's throwing. With what he has and going out and getting guys out at his age...the speed he's throwing stuff up there....it's amazing."
Moyer is so old that Guillen played against him. Went 4 for 22 against Moyer.
"It's kind of weird," Guillen said. "Jamie Moyer went from bad to good to old. It's amazing what he's doing. Sometimes you just shake your head and say how does this guy do it? This guy throws 75 and he still gets people out. That's not easy. He knows how to pitch. He learned how to pitch."
Buehrle doesn't usually pay attention to his pitch-speed readings on the scoreboard. Tonight he might take a peek.
"Now I'm going to prove to the world that I'm not Moyer," Buehrle said. "I'm two miles an hour plus ahead of him. I'll be yelling at him to throw fastballs, and throw harder, because I throw harder than he does."