Saturday, July 6, 2013

Average Whiff Locations by Pitch and Platoon

In this post, I look at the average location of all swinging strikes in 2013 so far. I broke them down by MLBAM tags to get a look at each individual pitch, and made 4 graphs to show each platoon situation (lefty versus lefty, lefty versus righty, etc.). Hopefully this gives us a better idea of where each pitch is located on average, and where they are successful.

I created an all fastballs tag that includes cutters, 4-seamers, the FA tag, 2-seamers, forkballs, and splitters (but not sinkers) as well. I didn't include the FA tags (just ignored them) in the breakdown of pitches because they are just 4-seamers with the old label for some reason.

Right-handed pitchers against right-handed batters:

I guess the notable things here are the height of the average knuckleball whiff (high knucklers are bad says common wisdom), sinkers and 2-seamers are basically the same, and the curves and knucklecurves are both thrown away.

By left-handed pitchers against right-handed batters:

The screwball (SC) are just two Hector Santiago screwballs. I included them just for fun. Other than that, we see that the changeup is used arm side instead of straight down the middle like the splitter (or like how it was used by righties on righties). Curves and sliders went in on righties on average, and weren't thrown for a strike most of the time.

By left-handed pitchers against left-handed batters:

Basically everything shifted glove side, away from the hitter.

By right-handed pitchers against left-handed batters:

Curve, slider, and knucklecurve have somewhat unique locations. The few forkballs that got whiffs were thrown low and far away on average.

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