McKenzie Working Self Back to Form

McKenzie Working Self Back to Form

After missing an entire season recovering from arm surgery, not only is Casey McKenzie back pitching, but he is dominating hitters once again, a sign that many in the Jays organization are gleeming about.

The 24-year-old was drafted by Toronto in the 27th round of the 2004 draft, and didn't waste any time signing his contract as he wanted to get out and pitch.

McKenzie led Auburn in games started (15) in 2004 and went 5-4 with a 3.78 ERA in 69 innings. However, that would be the last time the Lewisville, Texas native stepped on the mound for a while, as surgery followed in 2005 causing him to miss the entire season.

The right-hander began this season down in extended spring training and was dedicated to regain his arm strength and reach the point that he could be competative on the mound once June rolled around.

McKenzie made his debut in 2006 with the Auburn Doubledays and the organization needed just two starts to see he was back to his old form. McKenzie went 1-0 with a 1.64 ERA in 11 innings with Auburn before being promoted to the Midwest League to join the Lansing Lugnuts rotation.

In 10 starts with Lansing, McKenzie has seen just one bad outing. Over his last three outings he's allowed just one earned run over 18 2/3 innings. On Tuesday evening, the right-handed pitcher, tossed six scoreless innings and extended his consecutive inning scoreless streak to 13.

"He's still a little bit wild around the plate, and doesn't have the command he should have," noted one scout.

"He's getting better with each start, which is exactly what you want to see."

Opposing batters are hitting just .200 (11-55) off him with runners in scoring position, and just .174 (4-23) with runners in scoring position and two outs.

Lansing is preparing for some competative baseball next month in the Midwest League Playoffs, and McKenzie will be a big arm in the quest for the League Championship.

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