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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Carlos Gonzalez, God On The Mountain?

What if I told you that Carlos Gonzalez’ poor road performance is due to his struggles to hit a certain pitch outside of Coors? And what if I told you that that certain pitch is not a curveball and that it actually all makes sense?

...Until and including August 6th, there were 474,587 pitches thrown in the MLB, with just above fifteen thousand of them pitched in Coors Field. Looking at those pitches we can tell if there is any truth to the claim that batters in general have an easier time hitting in Coors than on the sea level.Now, this is staggering and completely unexpected. Carlos does struggle away and he does that in an epic fashion, but he struggles on fastballs?! He swings and misses on 24% of fastballs on the road, which is between double and triple what the league does. Or put in different words, CG swung at more than 100 fastballs while playing away games this year. He managed to put less than a quarter of the ones he swung at in play, while the league succeeds at it more than the half of the times.


# Pitches move differently in Colorado
# Pitches move less in Colorado and overall dispersion is much smaller (the visible rectangle versus the washed out one). Therefor, the element of surprise due to the pitch movement is smaller.
# Fastballs lose much more movement than curveballs and sliders
# Pitches are faster in Colorado (not visible from this graph, but have a look at Ubaldo Jimenez table below)

elcroata of AthleticsNation uses Pitch F/X to break down what is really happening to the baseball at Coors Field (graphs! charts!), and just why Carlos Gonzalez is a completely different hitter on the road.

33Boots Posted: August 10, 2010 at 05:19 AM | 0 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: athletics

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