Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Friday, September 10, 2021

How One Padres Reliever Is Plunking His Way to an Unlikely HBP Record

Despite little name recognition, Austin Adams is one of the most dominant pitchers in baseball. Among all pitchers with at least 40 innings pitched in 2021, the Padres’ right-handed reliever is allowing the lowest slugging percentage (.201) and the third-lowest batting average (.149), behind only Jacob deGrom and Josh Hader.

Adams has come by those numbers honestly: Statcast’s “expected” statistics show that based on the exit velocities and launch angles of batted balls allowed, he ranks first in expected slugging percentage allowed and tied for second in expected batting average. He boasts the lowest hard-hit rate for any pitcher with at least 50 batted balls against, and he’s thrown by far the most innings for any pitcher who hasn’t allowed a home run.

Yet the most fascinating part of Adams’s otherwise stellar season has nothing to do with batting average or home runs or any sort of bat-to-ball contact at all. No, the weirdest, wildest, most wonderful wrinkle is that Adams, a reliever with all of 46 2/3 innings, also leads the league by hitting 20 batters; nobody else—not more frequently used relievers, not any of the qualified starters on pace for 200-plus innings—has hit more than 15. And with three weeks remaining in the season, Adams has a chance at the liveball era record.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 10, 2021 at 10:49 AM | 22 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: austin adams

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Howie Menckel Posted: September 10, 2021 at 10:51 AM (#6039006)
Imagine if he pitched for the Cardinals, or Cubs !
   2. SoSH U at work Posted: September 10, 2021 at 10:57 AM (#6039009)
Imagine if he pitched for the Cardinals, or Cubs !


What is that imagining supposed to do?
   3. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 10, 2021 at 11:16 AM (#6039011)
You have to imagine this guy is headed for a brawl. 1 HPB every 2 IP is a menace.
   4. SoSH U at work Posted: September 10, 2021 at 11:23 AM (#6039013)
You have to imagine this guy is headed for a brawl. 1 HPB every 2 IP is a menace.


Looking at a montage, they seem to come in two camps. Sliders that don't slide and clip righthanders on the hip. And sliders that slide too much and clip them on the legs.

   5. salvomania Posted: September 10, 2021 at 11:35 AM (#6039016)
Imagine if he pitched for the Cardinals, or Cubs !

What is that imagining supposed to do?

Both teams are on pace to break the all-time MLB record for hit batsmen in a season (currently 95, by the 2003 Devil Rays).

The Cubs are on pace for 99 HBP, the Cardinals for 96 (actually, 95.6, and their pace has slowed dramatically; heading into August they were on pace for around 110, but they've stopped hitting batters since then). In June the Cardinals were on pace for over 120 HBP.
   6. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: September 10, 2021 at 11:37 AM (#6039018)
Despite little name recognition, [RELIEVER] is one of the most dominant pitchers in baseball.


Baseball 2021 Mad Libs!
   7. SoSH U at work Posted: September 10, 2021 at 11:40 AM (#6039019)
Both teams are on pace to break the all-time MLB record for hit batsmen in a season (currently 95, by the 2003 Devil Rays).


Thank you. I hadn't heard that.
   8. salvomania Posted: September 10, 2021 at 11:41 AM (#6039021)
Through July 28, the Cardinals had 75 hit batsmen in 102 games (0.74/game, a pace of 121 hbp); since then they've only hit 7 in 37 games (0.19/game).

EDIT: The Cardinals have now gone 18 straight games without hitting a batter, something that earlier in the year I would have thought was impossible.
   9. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 10, 2021 at 11:56 AM (#6039022)
Despite little name recognition, Austin Adams is one of the most dominant pitchers in baseball. Among all pitchers with at least 40 innings pitched in 2021, the Padres’ right-handed reliever is allowing the lowest slugging percentage (.201) and the third-lowest batting average (.149), behind only Jacob deGrom and Josh Hader.


This guy's not actually dominant at all, at least not as I'd use that term. Because he hits so many batters, Adams has put more than one runner per inning on first via walk or HBP. He's allowing an OBP of .357, well above the league OBP of .317. His ERA is a decidedly non-dominant 3.28.
   10. Howie Menckel Posted: September 10, 2021 at 12:28 PM (#6039024)
Rotisserie baseball dings pitchers for hits and walks but NOT HBP. so Adams is useful on that front, at least.

check that - he has allowed a weird 23 H/31 BB in 47 IP, which is a merely respectable 1.157 WHIP for a reliever.
   11. 57i66135 right now is attacking rest Posted: September 10, 2021 at 01:29 PM (#6039030)
you didn't even quote the funniest part:

How is Adams managing this extraordinary feat? He essentially subsists on a one-pitch diet, throwing his high-spin slider 88 percent of the time against batters of both handedness. All 20 of his HBPs have naturally come on sliders; notably, he’s allowed only 20 actual hits off his slider all year long, per Statcast tracking.
   12. 57i66135 right now is attacking rest Posted: September 10, 2021 at 01:42 PM (#6039033)
This guy's not actually dominant at all, at least not as I'd use that term. Because he hits so many batters, Adams has put more than one runner per inning on first via walk or HBP. He's allowing an OBP of .357, well above the league OBP of .317. His ERA is a decidedly non-dominant 3.28.

a .357 OBP with a .202 SLG% still adds up to a godawful .559 OPS.

so, this guy has 51 BB+HBP. 19 are with the bases empty. of the remaining 32:
9 occurred with first base unoccupied while other runners were on 2nd and/or 3rd base.
23 of these events caused a runner on first base to advance
and of those 23, 3 occurred with the bases loaded, thus forcing in a run.


that is not nearly as terrible as it could be.
   13. The Duke Posted: September 10, 2021 at 03:26 PM (#6039053)
I think they should enforce the rule that players need to attempt to get out of the way and/or eliminate the free pass if your get hit on the protective elbow pad
   14. SoSH U at work Posted: September 10, 2021 at 03:32 PM (#6039057)
I think they should enforce the rule that players need to attempt to get out of the way and/or eliminate the free pass if your get hit on the protective elbow pad


I think they should abandon the rule that players need to get out of the way. Why should it be on the hitter to bail the pitcher out? (Now, I also believe that if you are hit by a pitch anywhere outside the batter's box, then you shouldn't get first base at all, but it's merely a ball/strike depending on location).
   15. John Northey Posted: September 10, 2021 at 04:06 PM (#6039063)
Watch out for Alek Manoah - Jays rookie starter who has 11 HBP in 85 IP over 16 starts. A 120 ERA+ so he is a very good pitcher, just when he loses it for a pitch he really loses it. Yet no wild pitches - go figure. He takes after an old Jays pitcher - Dave Stieb - who lead the league in HBP 5 times with a peak of 15 in 1986. Fun seeing the one game when he got booted after hitting a guy and he yelled at the umps about it with basically the argument that he does that all the time.
   16. SoSH U at work Posted: September 10, 2021 at 04:21 PM (#6039068)
Fun seeing the one game when he got booted after hitting a guy and he yelled at the umps about it with basically the argument that he does that all the time.


Yelling at someone was also something he did all the time.
   17. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 10, 2021 at 05:43 PM (#6039080)
Fun seeing the one game when he got booted after hitting a guy and he yelled at the umps about it with basically the argument that he does that all the time.
When you hit batters frequently, eventually intent doesn’t really matter, your team is ‘liable’ on a negligence theory for putting a guy without major league control on the mound. There’ll be retaliation and the team has to decide whether to run the risk to its own batters.
   18. sunday silence (again) Posted: September 10, 2021 at 06:38 PM (#6039097)
whats the current rule on body armor? Are they allowed all the stuff that Bonds used to wear?

Q2: does anyone think that disallowing all body armor would lead to less HRs?
   19. Cblau Posted: September 10, 2021 at 09:10 PM (#6039122)
I'm not sure what the team record is, but the 1899 Spiders hit 109 batters:
https://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/NL/1899.shtml
   20. salvomania Posted: September 11, 2021 at 02:33 PM (#6039209)
I'm not sure what the team record is, but the 1899 Spiders hit 109 batters:
https://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/NL/1899.shtml

That may well be the pre-1900 record.

But since 1900, the Devil Rays' 95 is the MLB team record.

EDIT: 109 is the "all-time" record, and second is the Washington AA club in 1891 (before the current pitching distance) with 105.

After that it's the 2003 Devil Rays (95), and almost every post-1900 team that follows all-time is from post-2000 as well. You have to go all the way down to 20th place on the post-1900 list to find a PRE-2000 team, and even then it's the 1996 Angels, with 84.

Of the top 85 team seasons on the all-time hit batsmen list, 78 are post-2000, and only two are from before 1996.

The first season between 1923 and 1993 (69 years) is 194th on the list, the 1968 White Sox, with 66 hit batsmen.
   21. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: September 11, 2021 at 09:19 PM (#6039268)
Yet the most fascinating part of Adams’s otherwise stellar season has nothing to do with batting average or home runs or any sort of bat-to-ball contact at all. No, the weirdest, wildest, most wonderful wrinkle is that Adams, a reliever with all of 46 2/3 innings, also leads the league by hitting 20 batters; nobody else—not more frequently used relievers, not any of the qualified starters on pace for 200-plus innings—has hit more than 15. And with three weeks remaining in the season, Adams has a chance at the liveball era record.

Hmmmm, I'm not sure I'd use "wonderful" to describe a record for hitting batters.

Although "Chicks Dig The Beanball" does have kind of an edgy ring.
   22. John Northey Posted: September 12, 2021 at 01:25 AM (#6039296)
Manoah is an excellent pitcher - 121 ERA+ so far - but he has an odd habit of hitting guys. He did it in the minors too in his short time down there (6 HBP in 9 games, 134 batters faced vs 11 against 357 in the majors). IIRC most of the time he hits them with his lower speed pitches, not his fastball so most hitters just accept the base and move on - just not in the game he was ejected. He is far too mouthy at times, but that is part of his personality - he is super active on the bench even when not pitching. A fun guy to have on your team, but someone other teams must get annoyed with. I get the feeling the Jays will be great fun here but hated by others over the next 5+ years while the kids develop. From the offense with Vlad Jr, Bo Bichette, Teoscar Hernandez, etc. to the pitching with Manoah and a pitching coach who seems to have a magic touch. It is a great time to be a Jays fan.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Shooty would run in but these bone spurs hurt!
for his generous support.

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogEmpty Stadium Sports Will Be Really Weird
(14052 - 6:25am, Sep 22)
Last: .

NewsblogRays grab data card shaken loose from Kirk's wrist, deny Blue Jays' request to return it
(5 - 1:42am, Sep 22)
Last: the Hugh Jorgan returns

NewsblogKansas City Royals' Salvador Perez breaks Johnny Bench's catcher record with 46th HR
(57 - 1:04am, Sep 22)
Last: baxter

NewsblogVeteran catcher Alex Avila to retire at end of year
(22 - 11:43pm, Sep 21)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogNBA 2021 Playoffs+ thread
(4491 - 11:31pm, Sep 21)
Last: Hombre Brotani

NewsblogWEEKDAY OMNICHATTER wants you to believe in yourself, for September 20, 2021
(45 - 11:16pm, Sep 21)
Last: The Duke

Sox TherapyIt's A Sprint, Not A Marathon
(24 - 11:00pm, Sep 21)
Last: Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer

Gonfalon CubsThis all sucks
(36 - 10:37pm, Sep 21)
Last: Brian C

NewsblogHow Declining Subs For Regional Sports Networks Could Impact MLB Relocation And Expansion
(6 - 9:48pm, Sep 21)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogMets targeting A’s Billy Beane as candidate to run baseball operations
(28 - 9:17pm, Sep 21)
Last: Infinite Yost (Voxter)

Newsblog8th? BBTF Central Park Softball Game: SEPT 18, 2021
(227 - 7:46pm, Sep 21)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogRemorseful Thom Brennaman deserves to work again now; He’s already suffered 14 months of hell
(83 - 7:44pm, Sep 21)
Last: dejarouehg

NewsblogGuardians to promote outfielder-turned-reliever Anthony Gose
(18 - 7:16pm, Sep 21)
Last: vortex of dissipation

NewsblogIsraeli baseball team wins silver in European Championship, its best result ever
(6 - 6:49pm, Sep 21)
Last: Ron J

NewsblogHow MLB vet found a home in Atlantic League
(3 - 5:09pm, Sep 21)
Last: Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc

Page rendered in 0.3400 seconds
48 querie(s) executed