Friday, March 20, 2009

Pitchers and Pitches

I have been following a thread in the Forum about a pitchers pitches and if they are weighted. I am not the only one here following this little tidbit of information either, though no one has a real definitive answer either. WIS is not about to tell you how the formula works or what factors impact pitching resolution. Matter of fact they elude answering the questions about pitching the best they can. I am not sure about all of them myself but I have reasoned out a few about pitchers by the results in the box scores. This is where everyone needs to concentrate in my opinion. As in the real world the answer to the entire situation is "effectiveness" and that is the word WIS eludes to more than being definitive. With that being the answer any pitcher can be effective on any given day, that does not mean he will be effective every time they pitch. Cy Young pitchers have bad days also, so there must be some factor or combination of factors that will give them a bad game every now and then. With that being said, what one needs to concentrate on, more or less, is finding the pitchers that are effective the best.

One of the things I requested every one to do was read the help section about player settings for pitchers and players at the beginning of the season. Some of those elusive factors are mentioned there that no one seems to pay much attention.

One thing of importance that everyone seems to put less importance on is the players physical abilities. I have noticed that these ratings are affecting a players performance on the field more and more over the course of a season.

Lets take a little more indepth study of a pitcher and can be applied to any player if one stops and thinks about it.

Stamina - Does a high stamina make a pitcher more effective? Not really as it actually determines what role a pitcher plays more than anything else used in conjunction with his physical abilities of course.

Control - Does a high control make a pitcher more effective? Of course, it would be really silly to think otherwise. However low control pitchers can be just as effective. Patience, Temper and Makeup come into play here. I wouldn't want a high temper guy with low control, tend to lead to hit batters, fights and ejections especially if he hits a high temper batter.

Splits - It was noted that a real effective pitcher will have a vsR of 70 or better in this category. Most left handed pitchers don't have this, so what makes them tick that makes them effective against right handed batters? It has to be Patience, Temper and Makeup and their pitches. The same can be said of right handed pitchers with less than the vsR 70 also. Can low split pitchers be effective? I think so if their control is very high, have good pitches along with good Patience, Temper and Makeup and a good PC catcher will help.

Velocity - This one sometimes mystifies me. Most like the high velocity pitchers because they tend to strike more batters out which is true. In the same realm though, they also have a tendency to give up more home runs. It is my feeling that a high velocity pitcher better have real good control, splits and pitches to be effective. Once again Patience, Temper and Makeup come into play.

GB/FB - I am not real keen on a fly ball pitcher in a heavy plus park but they seem to fare just as well as a ground ball pitcher. My feeling here is that defense helps more than anything else along with the Pitches, Patience, Temper and Makeup.

Pitches - This is where things seem to get a little muddied and are a big factor as to whether a pitcher is effective or not.

Pitch #1 - The first pitch is the out pitch so we have found out, so if it is not in the 80's or 90's he is not going to be as effective.

Pitch #2 - If pitch #1 is his out pitch, then the second pitch becomes important and probably needs to be in the mid 60's and up at least.

Pitch #3 - Not all pitchers have a third pitch and there are lots of 3 pitch only pitchers and some are starters. For 3 pitch only I would say it needs to be in the 50's at least and the higher the better for any other.

Pitch #4 - Normally this pitch is in the 40's and I would say that it could be a bait pitch more than anything else. However there are times when this pitch is higher than pitch #3, this should be watched very carefully. If pitch #3 is not in the 50's, say 30's or 40', and pitch #4 is in the 60's or higher this tends to make the pitcher give up many more home runs.

Pitch #5 - This pitch is normally what one would call a throw away pitch if available. It has been said that if this pitch is really low that a good coach will get him to drop it or it would never be thrown. My question is how low is low and that answer has never been given, but I would assume that low would be less than 20. I have seen this pitch much higher than pitch #3 and pitch #4 lately, I do not know if this has any effect on the home run business in this manner.

The effect of a catchers PC is involved also. This is another factor that comes into play somewhere along the line. 50 is the standard for that, below 50 supposedly gets negatives and above 50 gets positives. What was said is that it gives a bonus to the pitches but it only effects OAV and SLG%. If that is the case then it becomes a defensive measure as is intended. That means if the resolution was that the ball was put in play, there is more of a likelyhood that it becomes an out or a home run may become a double or single.

Another factor that some don't realize is the batter himself, his Patience, Temper and Makeup also play a big factor in the resolution of an AB along with his hitting abilities. Does he have the patience to wait on that bad pitch #3? Does he have the makeup to know that pitch #3 is coming instead of pitch #4. Or did he swing and miss on a ball out of the zone because he guessed wrong?

Lets not forget about ball park factors also. Does weather get thrown in every once in awhile? Of course I didn't mention fatigue either, I have noticed that some pen pitchers can't throw two days in a row even if they are at 100% either.

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