Yes, we all "heard" about this power pitcher. But as far as I remember, even that game when he came up and was no-hitting the Rangers, as far as I remember, he was throwing 96 in the first inning, then was 91-92 the rest of the game. Only time he has thrown 94 or more consistently, was throwing an inning or 2 out of the pen. Doesn't really matter, though, if he can sit at 92-93, he should be fine. And of course, stop leaving that cutter or whatever he calls it right on the middle of the plate at 88mph.
And AJ was talking about not throwing as hard way before he started pitching here. Said he learned from Halladay that he should take a little off, concentrate more on location, and let his stuff get quick outs. Even in year one with us, he wasn't throwing 97. Maybe it was partly him just getting older. It happens.
And yes, maybe Joba pinballing back and forth between starting and relieving may have done something, sure. But I doubt they disliked him throwing 97. Or told him to go back to the pen and only throw 94. Something just wasn't there. Maybe his arm wasn't right. Maybe it was confidence, or that the adrenaline just wasn't there anymore. Or, maybe he just burned himself out after throwing so hard when he first came up...who knows. I do know, though, that his location wasn't as good with the fastball, and the league started laying off the slider, which forced him to start going to other pitches, which made him more hittable. Also, going to constant deep counts, and having long innings can't help either..
CC hasn't thrown any softer. Neither has Nova. We'll see with Pineda.
Just a side note, there isn't anything wrong with averaging 92-93. Know how many guys average better than that? 6 starters total threw 94 or harder. 10 guys averaged 93. So thats a total of 16 starters that averaged 93 or better. Big difference between touching 94, and averaging it..