DETROIT -- Jered Weaver's issues since coming back from the disabled list stem mostly from lack of flexibility, according to Angels pitching coach Mike Butcher.
"His body right now is not able to get in a position to where he can repeat his deceptive delivery the way he's normally doing it, and that takes time," Butcher said. "He's lost a little bit of flexibility, and he needs to get it back for him to be where he needs to be with his delivery."
Weaver, who missed more than seven weeks from early April to late May with a broken left elbow, is 1-4 with a 4.65 ERA in his first seven starts and his average fastball velocity has gone down again -- from 90.1 in 2010, to 89.2 in '11, to 88.0 in '12, to 86.6 in '13.
Butcher points out that Weaver won 20 games last year while pitching at around the velocity he's been at this season and said his right shoulder, which bothered him down the stretch in 2012, is completely healthy. What the Angels are working on with their ace is getting back his patented flexibility and extension, because few starting pitchers rely on it more than a 6-foot-7 Weaver who throws way across his body.
"He's blocking himself out where he doesn't get his true extension," said Butcher, who believes the time off contributed to that and added that the velocity can go up a couple ticks once Weaver regains that flexibility.
"His arm feels good," Butcher added. "So I look at the encouraging things and I look at the other things, and I'm like, 'Well, you're not able to get to these positions. Why?' We need to address those issues, and it's been addressed. We've been working on them, and really it's just a matter of how fast his body can respond."
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.