CHRIS Christopher BASSITT
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Nickname:   N/A Position:   RHP
Home: N/A Team:   ATHLETICS
Height: 6' 5" Bats:   R
Weight: 220 Throws:   R
DOB: 2/22/1989 Agent: Pro Star Management
Uniform #: 40  
Birth City: Toledo, OH
Draft: White Sox #16 - 2011 - Out of Univ. of Akron (OH)
YR LEA TEAM SAL(K) G IP H SO BB GS CG SHO SV W L OBA ERA
2011 APP BRISTOL   6 8.1 9 11 2 0 0 0 0 0 0   1.08
2011 CAR WINSTON-SALEM   1 1.2 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0   5.40
2011 SAL KANNAPOLIS   16 24.2 18 29 6 0 0 0 1 3 1   1.82
2012 CAR WINSTON-SALEM   38 91 74 75 54 10 0 0 4 5 4   3.66
2013 SL BIRMINGHAM   8 47.2 35 37 17 8 0 0 0 4 2   2.27
2013 CAR WINSTON-SALEM   18 101.1 90 101 42 18 0 0 0 7 2   3.46
2014 SL BIRMINGHAM   6 34.2 26 36 14 6 0 0 0 3 1   1.56
2014 AZL AZL-White Sox   3 8.2 9 13 3 2 0 0 0 0 0   4.15
2014 AL WHITE SOX   6 29.2 34 21 13 5 0 0 0 1 1 0.286 3.94
2015 AL ATHLETICS   18 86 78 64 30 13 0 0 0 1 8 0.244 3.56
2015 PCL NASHVILLE   13 69 59 70 19 10 1 0 0 2 7   3.65
2016 AL ATHLETICS $510.00 5 28 35 23 14 5 0 0 0 0 2 0.294 6.11
2017 PCL NASHVILLE   17 37.2 41 31 16 2 0 0 0 4 2   6.21
2017 CAL STOCKTON $540.00 7 13 9 14 4 7 0 0 0 0 1   2.77
2018 PCL NASHVILLE   18 81.2 86 83 25 14 0 0 0 5 5   4.30
2018 AL ATHLETICS   11 47.2 40 41 19 7 0 0 0 2 3 0.221 3.02
2019 IL LEHIGH VALLEY   1 3 3 5 2 1 0 0 0 0 0   3.00
2019 PCL LAS VEGAS   2 8 8 9 2 2 0 0 0 0 0   4.50
2019 CAL STOCKTON   1 3 0 7 0 1 0 0 0 0 0   0.00
2019 AL ATHLETICS $565.00 28 144 125 141 47 25 0 0 0 10 5 0.229 3.81
Personal
  • Bassitt's high school in Clay, Ohio had an enrollment of less than 600.

    "I understand why no one recruited me," Chris said in 2013. "I came from a small high school. I didn’t go to any of the camps, which was a big mistake. I didn’t put my name out there. I didn’t do the work.

    “I wasn’t able to be seen, so it was a fluke. I threw well against one of the schools in Ohio, and that’s how I got to my college. But I don’t have any grudges against any college that didn’t recruit me.

  • Bassitt went to the University of Akron. In 2011, he posted a 1.42 ERA and averaged 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings. He was then chosen by the White Sox in the 16th round, and signed.

    "I took (getting picked in the 16th round) as more of an honor,” Bassitt said. “I didn’t care about the money or the round I was picked. It was just an honor of getting the opportunity of what I wanted to do. It again was proving to myself what I was.”

  • In 2014, the Baseball America Prospect Handbook rated Bassitt as the 15th-best propect in the White Sox organization.

  • May 21, 2019: Chris started a game in Detroit with a group of about 70 friends and family members from his nearby hometown of Toledo, Ohio, cheering him on from a lower-level section near home plate at Comerica Park. It was special for him, but that was nothing compared to the butterflies he felt before he pitched 3 2/3 innings in a 5-3 Oakland win at Progressive Field.

    Bassitt grew up a die-hard Cleveland sports fan. And the Indians of the 1990s and early 2000s held a special place in his heart.

    “I came to some games here,” Bassitt said. “It was easy to root for the Indians in the '90s, with Kenny Lofton, Jim Thome, CC [Sabathia], Cliff Lee, Manny [Ramirez]. Top to bottom, they had an 8-10-year run that was unreal to watch. I grew up loving this team, so it’s fun.

    “Pitching here is surreal because, growing up, that’s all I watched. Everyone watched the Braves or Yankees because they were always on TV, but whenever the Indians were on, I was always watching them.

    To go from loving a team to trying to beat that team in its own stadium is a weird feeling, but Bassitt has actually done it once before. In his first start at Progressive Field, on July 11, 2015, he got a no-decision in the A’s 5-4 win over the Indians, allowing just two runs on seven hits with one walk and three strikeouts over 6 1/3 innings.

    The first time is always a little more special, but Bassitt doesn’t expect his second start in Cleveland, or any other start there after this, to diminish the feeling he gets when he takes the mound at the ballpark of his childhood.

    “This place will always hold a special place in my heart,” Bassitt said. “I feel like the team you grew up watching will always be special to you, and if you don’t play for them, playing against them is still pretty fun.”

    The group of supporters won’t be as large as the one that came out to watch Bassitt hold the Tigers scoreless over a career-high eight innings last week, but given the many friends he made in his time at nearby University of Akron, he expects another large round of cheers as he takes the mound for Oakland.

    “I’ll definitely have a good amount here,” Bassitt said. “For the amount of family that won’t be coming, I’ll have a lot of friends coming. It’s still pretty close to home.” (M Gallegos - MLB.com - May 21, 2019)

  • September 4, 2019:  Chris was away from the team to be with his wife, Jessica, who gave birth to their first child, a daughter named Landry Jayne. Bassitt will be given a few days of extra rest before returning to start September 7, 2019, against the Tigers. “He’ll be on his way back tomorrow,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said of Bassitt. “We’ll give him a day to acclimate and push him back.”  (Gallegos - mlb.com)

  • A's biggest trash talker: A mini-basketball hoop sits atop Sean Manaea’s locker inside the A’s clubhouse. The pregame hoops sessions are usually pretty lively regardless, but things tend to turn up a notch whenever Bassitt is around, as he often challenges fellow teammates to shooting contests. That's when the trash talking comes out, with Bassitt constantly razzing opponents as a tactic to throw off their concentration. (MLB.com - Apr. 29, 2020)

    TRANSACTIONS

  • June 2011: The White Sox drafted Bassitt in the 16th round, out of the University of Akron in Ohio.

  • December 9, 2014: The A's sent Jeff Samardzija to the White Sox; acquiring infielder Marcus Semien, Bassitt, catcher Josh Phegley, and first baseman Rangel Ravelo.

  • Jan 10, 2020: Chris and the A's avoided arbitration, agreeing on a one-year deal for $2.25 million.
Pitching
  • Bassitt has a 90-94 mph two-seam SINKER, a 93-97 mph four-seamer. He has a near-average 84-87 mh SLIDER and a 71-74 mph CURVEBALL, but between the two pitches, he uses only the one that is working better on that night. His 83-85 mph CHANGEUP is fringe-average. (Spring, 2018)

    At times his fastball flattens out when he loses his low-three-quarters arm slot. His curve comes in below hitting speed, has sweeping glove-side movement and is an extreme flyball pitch. His slider results in more flyballs (than ground balls), is much harder than usual and has less than expected depth. His cutter has strong cutting action. His change has slight armside fade.

    Broadening his pitch assortment away from a simple fastball/slider combination was one of his key adaption tasks when he converted from the bullpen to starting a few years ago. Also since his secondary pitches are fly ball pitches, it is quite interesting for a guy who relies a great deal on sinkers and has such low home run rates.

    if he can shave a few walks off his ratios and stay healthy, Bassitt could be a decent back-end starter. If he does break out, the first indicator would probably be a higher strikeout rate. (July 2015)

  • 2016 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball: 21.3% of the time; Sinker 40.4% of the time; Change 7.6%; Slider 13%; and Curve 17.7% of the time.

  • 2018 Season Pitch Usage: 4-seam Fastball: 13.3% of the time; Sinker 44.1%; Change 4.3%; Slider 25%; and his Curve 13.3% of the time. Average velocity: 4-seam 93 mph, Sinker 92.5, Change 83.7, Slider 87.1, and Curve 71.6 mph.

  • Chris comes at hitters from a low three-quarters arm angle.

    "I know there are things I’m really going to have to improve on, and obviously pitching to lefties is going to be one big thing going forward," he said as the 2014 season ended.

    Bassitt’s two-seam fastball has been effective against righthanded hitters, and he’s been working on cutting the ball in on lefthanders.

    “He has a live arm,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “You look at him, just size wise and how it comes out of his hand, he’s an intriguing pitcher just because of the way he throws. And he’s shown the ability to fight through tough situations, which is what you want to see.”

  • Bassitt pitched out of the bullpen early in his career and, prior to the 2015 season, many believed he would eventually return to relieving. But he’s made the most of his opportunity to start and has many of the traits necessary to profile as a big league starter.

  • 2016 Improvements:  Bassitt has traded in his high-effort delivery for a simplified version borrowed from Sonny Gray. "It's a complete change from last year," Bassitt said.

    The process began in 2015, when pitching coach Curt Young was working to resolve his occasional habit of tipping pitches. It was during this process they stumbled upon a few delivery patterns that mimicked those employed by Gray. "And we just ran with it," said Bassitt.

    "We were seeing some things we wanted to clean up," Young said. "It really has to do with simplifying his delivery and making him comfortable with where his hands are starting from the windup. I'm seeing a more compact delivery from him, where it's been consistent in his side work, and that's really what we're looking for, for him to repeat it and be consistent with his delivery. His arm is going to work the same way every time, which helps him get into the strike zone."

    Eliminating as many moving parts from Bassitt's complex delivery meant rotating his body to the right at the starting point, "where it almost appears he's in the stretch when he's in the windup," Young said. "That's how simple he's trying to keep it." From there, Chris takes a small step with his left foot to jumpstart his leg kick, helping him form a more compact delivery.

    "He's starting from a strong position," Gray said. "The big thing for him is his lower half is in the same position every pitch. He has a smaller step back now, and he also has his back foot the way he wants it while he's delivering the pitch. He seems to like it."

    "I'm so much more under control," Bassitt said. "Usually I'm stepping sideways, then I'm trying to step back, now everything is just directionally toward home plate. It just feels so much better. There's not so much rocking back and forth like before."

    Such movements often cost Bassitt his command.

    "With his ability and the confidence he gained last year, we expect him to be in the rotation, and we expect him to have a good year," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "He has a high ceiling. He's got great movement, he throws hard, he came a long way with his breaking stuff last year, and I know his confidence came with it. He's the type of guy you can just see he's more confident out there."

    This partly stems from Bassitt's newfound appreciation for the starting pitcher's routine. In the past, he often spoke of his preference for relieving.

    "I kinda changed my mind," said Bassitt, laughing. "Last year, after bouncing back and forth, I'd be really happy to start all year. For now, I'm 100 percent on board with starting. I've embraced the routine and learned to love it."

  • In 2015, several of Bassitt's pitches—notably his cutter and changeup—were slow to develop. This go-around, they're already ahead of schedule, he said, because of his delivery tweaks. He also feels stronger, after an offseason of conditioning with Gray in Nashville, Tenn., at Gray's alma mater, Vanderbilt University.

    Bassitt and his girlfriend came to love the city during his stints with the Nashville Sounds, so it didn't take much convincing for them to stay when Gray told him, "Just come work out with me every day."

    "We had fun," Gray said. "As pitchers, whether it's a grip or it's something like this with his delivery, if you can help another guy out, that's what's so cool about pitching. We're all constantly trying to get better, and the best way to get better sometimes is by watching other guys." (Jane Lee - MLB.com. - March 3, 2016)

  • Sept 28, 2020:  Chris Bassitt pitched lights-out baseball whe his team needed it the most, and his dominant Septembers resulted in being named the American League Pitcher of the Month for September.

    Bassitt was the hottest pitcher in baseball down the stretch, leading the Majors with a 0.34 ERA in September -- Gerrit Cole was next-closest at an even 1.00 -- as the A's ran away with the American League West title and clinched the No. 2 seed in the AL playoff bracket.

    The 31-year-old righty went 3-0 and didn't allow more than one run in any of his four starts, which included three scoreless efforts. Bassitt's September lowered his ERA to 2.29 for the season.

    This is the first pitcher of the Month Award for Bassitt.

  • As of the start of the 2021 season, Bassitt had a career record of 19-21 with a 3.59 ERA, having allowed 41 home runs and 368 hits in 398 innings.
Career Injury Report
  • April-July 26, 2014: Bassitt was on the D.L. most of the season with a broken hand. Chris describes it as "non-baseball related."

  • August 20-Sept. 24, 2015: Chris was sidelined with shoulder soreness and went on the DL.

  • April 30, 2016: Bassitt remains on the DL and is a candidate for Tommy John surgery after learning he has a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching elbow.

    Bassitt, who underwent an MRI after being placed on the disabled list with a sprained elbow, will seek a second opinion before determining his next course of action.

    The 27-year-old is scheduled to see Dr. Timothy Kremchek in Cincinnati, the same surgeon who recently performed A's lefty Felix Doubront's Tommy John operation.

    May 6-Oct 7, 2016: Bassitt had successful Tommy John surgery.  He is expected to return to Oakland to begin his rehab, embarking on a recovery period that typically spans 12-18 months for first-time Tommy John patients.

  • April 1-July 25, 2017: Bassitt was still recovering from the Tommy John surgery and began the season on the DL, transferring to the 60-day DL on April 23.

  • March 27-April 17, 2019: Chris was on the IL with right lower leg contusion.