Keeping Tabs on Rick…

June 20, 2010 at 4:04 pm 2 comments

I did a little story after Rick Porcello’s last start discussing the mechanical issues that have been causing his issues on the mound.  The obvious answer was his arm slot was highly inconsistent.  This lead to less sink on his pitches.  Sinkerballers like sink on their pitches.  Trust me.

So I figured, lets see if there been any changes?  Looks like there have been some positive ones.

To save me some time I’m just going to link you guys to the PitchF/X charts, courtesy of TexasLeaguers.com.

My main focus is the release point chart.  Compared to the 2 starts I previously analyzed, this is a vast improvement.  It’s still not consistent enough to be truly effective but improvement is what we’re looking for.  Ideally you like to see those dots line up as much as possible.  While the up down position is probably most important, the horizontal position is more telling of how the batter is seeing the ball out of the pitchers hand.  The wide spacing means that it’s a bit easier to pick up on Ricks pitches still.

Now I want to look at the Spin Movement plus Gravity chart and the Pitch Location chart.

In the first chart we see location based upon spin movement of the ball plus the added effect of gravity.  I love this chart to be honest.  What we see in the chart is that Rick’s 2-seam fastball is staying down and inside on right handed batters as well as his change-up.  That’s a hard pitch to hit.  When we look at the actual pitch locations in the next chart, we are confirmed in seeing that a significant proportion of Ricks 2-seamers and change-ups were hitting that low inside corner on right handed batters.

Like I said, that’s a hard pitch to hit.  But if your release is giving a tip a split second before the bat reaches the plate, Major League batters know how to adjust.  But Rick’s improving, and based on this data I’m encouraged that more improvements will come.  I’m not thinking AAA any more for Rick, but maybe shutting him down for a start so that he can focus on his mechanics in bullpen sessions might do him some good.

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Entry filed under: PitchF/X, Pitching Mechanics. Tags: , , .

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Mike  |  June 21, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    AAA it is though!!!

    Reply
    • 2. somesortagiant  |  June 21, 2010 at 3:26 pm

      blah. I’m gonna start checking my news feeds before I start making posts and suggestions.

      Reply

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