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View Full Version : My take on Aroldis Chapman tonight



RS17TIMES
04-28-2010, 11:18 PM
Here's the link to my blog post (http://wp.me/pOmoa-te). I'm dead serious when I say he hit 103 in the first inning. I can't see any way the Reds can keep him in Triple-A for another month. He's got one of the best fastballs in the game already. You guys should be really excited to have this kid for the next six years and hopefully more. Enjoy!

OnBaseMachine
04-28-2010, 11:28 PM
I haven't read your report yet but I plan on doing so in a few minutes. Thanks for the info, RS17. I hope you hang around here and post more often.

RS17TIMES
04-28-2010, 11:39 PM
Thanks, I plan to. I blog about pitching for all teams, but the interaction on these boards is better than on most boards. My next goal as far as the Reds are concerned is to see Mike Leake pitch. I have the MLB.tv subscription, but obviously couldn't watch tonight while I was at the game. I see he pitched pretty well.

Roush's socks
04-28-2010, 11:43 PM
Thanks for this post! Great info and pitch by pitch detail. Good to see that the 2 run homer was hit on his slider which just got a little too over the plate. He can make that adjustment.

Sea Ray
04-29-2010, 10:04 AM
I'm curious as to why he only struck out 4 AAA hitters if he had a 103 MPH FB last night?

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 10:32 AM
I'm curious as to why he only struck out 4 AAA hitters if he had a 103 MPH FB last night?

He hit 103 once on my gun. It's not like he was throwing 100 consistently. He was generally 94-96 with some high 90s and some low 90s mixed in. Considering he threw approximately 85 fastballs in 100 pitches, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre hitters were able to sit on his fastball. It doesn't matter how hard you throw; if hitters can time it, they're going to be able to put the ball in play.

Plus, SWB is second-to-last in the International League with 117 strikeouts in 19 games. They do a good job putting the ball in play.

BLEEDS
04-29-2010, 11:26 AM
I'm dead serious when I say he hit 103 in the first inning. I can't see any way the Reds can keep him in Triple-A for another month. He's got one of the best fastballs in the game already. You guys should be really excited to have this kid for the next six years and hopefully more. Enjoy!


He hit 103 once on my gun. It's not like he was throwing 100 consistently. He was generally 94-96 with some high 90s and some low 90s mixed in. Considering he threw approximately 85 fastballs in 100 pitches, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre hitters were able to sit on his fastball. It doesn't matter how hard you throw; if hitters can time it, they're going to be able to put the ball in play.


I think you answered yourself.

I'll take Leake and his 91 MPH fastball with crazy movement in the last two feet over a straight fast-ball 10+ MPH.
If SWB can sit on a fastball, what do you think MLB hitters are going to do?!

Until Chapman can mix in more than 15% off-speed stuff, he's not ready for the majors.

PEACE

-BLEEDS

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 11:33 AM
I think you answered yourself.

I'll take Leake and his 91 MPH fastball with crazy movement in the last two feet over a straight fast-ball 10+ MPH.
If SWB can sit on a fastball, what do you think MLB hitters are going to do?!

Until Chapman can mix in more than 15% off-speed stuff, he's not ready for the majors.

PEACE

-BLEEDS

You're reading in to what I wrote. His fastball has great movement, but it's still a fastball. Off the top of my head, I remember two fastballs being hit hard, both by Winfree -- a foul ball in his first at bat and the home run in his second at bat. Chapman broke two or three bats with fastballs and got a lot of easy ground balls with his fastball. Two line drives on 85 fastballs is a pretty darn good ratio.

It's a great pitch, don't get me wrong. But when he throws it 85 percent of the time, it can be put in play. Which is why you're correct that he needs to throw more offspeed stuff before he's ready to be called up. I just don't think that'll be very long.

OnBaseMachine
04-29-2010, 11:33 AM
I'll take Leake and his 91 MPH fastball with crazy movement in the last two feet over a straight fast-ball 10+ MPH.


Chapman's fastball isn't straight. Go read some of the quotes from opposing players in Spring Training who raved about the movement on Chapman's fastball and other pitches. But yeah, I agree that he needs to mix up his pitches a little more. I'm not sure why the coaching staff would allow him to throw that many fastballs.

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 11:46 AM
Chapman's fastball isn't straight. Go read some of the quotes from opposing players in Spring Training who raved about the movement on Chapman's fastball and other pitches. But yeah, I agree that he needs to mix up his pitches a little more. I'm not sure why the coaching staff would allow him to throw that many fastballs.

I didn't have access to do interviews after the game, but I only have two guesses and both very well could be wrong. First, it was very chilly last night, mid-40s at best, so maybe they wanted him to pound the fastball inside because of the cold weather.

My second theory, which I think might hold more merit, is that they have him throwing more fastballs to build arm strength to pitch deep into games consistently. Obviously the fastball velocity is there, but by throwing it more often now, he'll have a better chance of having that high-90s velocity in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings when he'll need it most.

OnBaseMachine
04-29-2010, 11:57 AM
My second theory, which I think might hold more merit, is that they have him throwing more fastballs to build arm strength to pitch deep into games consistently. Obviously the fastball velocity is there, but by throwing it more often now, he'll have a better chance of having that high-90s velocity in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings when he'll need it most.

That could very well be true. It makes the most sense.

Hoosier Red
04-29-2010, 12:53 PM
I didn't have access to do interviews after the game, but I only have two guesses and both very well could be wrong. First, it was very chilly last night, mid-40s at best, so maybe they wanted him to pound the fastball inside because of the cold weather.

My second theory, which I think might hold more merit, is that they have him throwing more fastballs to build arm strength to pitch deep into games consistently. Obviously the fastball velocity is there, but by throwing it more often now, he'll have a better chance of having that high-90s velocity in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings when he'll need it most.

I know less than nothing about pitching mechanics, but isn't a fastball easier to throw in cold weather than off speed pitches? Less twisting and less torque on the arm?

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 12:55 PM
Chapman isn't ready. At all.

Last night his control was better than it had been in the past few starts..... and yet it still left one scout thinking it could lead to him being a closer.
http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2010/04/29/at-second-glance-aroldis-chapman-reveals-flaws-needs-polish/



The final line for Chapman (six innings pitched, five hits, three runs, two walks, four strikeouts) against the Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees doesn't look all that bad, and as a whole the outing really wasn't bad. What it was, however, was very telling. He is not ready for the big leagues right now, at least as a starting pitcher. If the Cincinnati Reds are determined to develop him as a starter, he has a lot of things to work on before he's going to be ready for the show.

I was left with doubts that Chapman can be a starter over the long haul. If the Reds are willing to be patient, allow him to refine his command and get him to some point of consistency with his fastball velocity, the finished product could very well be a front-end starter. But there are many hurdles to jump before that can happen.

Right now, Chapman looks like a future closer, especially if you are in the camp that wants him at the big-league level sooner rather than later. He had real trouble pacing himself Wednesday and maintaining steady velocity, and the effort he puts into producing that velocity appears to fluctuate from pitch to pitch. Can he maintain 95-plus mph on the fastball over the course of 100 pitches? Not based on what I saw. He has a difficult delivery to repeat, and his command is going to be a battle for him until he's completely comfortable with his mechanics.

I suggest everyone go read the entire article.

OnBaseMachine
04-29-2010, 01:00 PM
That article by Frankie Piliere is one of the biggest overreactions I've seen in quite a while. Two months ago Frankie was ready to put Chapman in the Hall of Fame, now, after showing consistent heat in his previous three starts, his velocity dips a little for an inning or two and now all of a sudden Chapman belongs in the bullpen. Wow. Did he not consider the fact that Chapman was pitching in cold and windy weather conditions last night? That's the first time he's pitched in those types of conditions. Piliere loses some credibility with that article, IMO.

I agree that Chapman needs some more time in the minors, but come on, you really think he's a future reliever now? As Will Carroll noted, he's got two plus pitches and the potential for two more. He's a starter.

Scrap Irony
04-29-2010, 01:12 PM
The reasoning for that scout's assessment was that Chapman hasn't yet developed the stamina to go major innings. It's not that his stuff is short; right now, his strength is. There could be any number of reasons for that.

1) It was cold in Louisville. When interviewed after the game, Chapman confirmed that was the coldest weather he had ever pitched in. That affects durability a great deal.

2) Chapman could be going through his dead arm period. Many Red pitchers seemed to hit that lull early in April; perhaps Chapman, because of the time off, hit his with this start?

3) Speaking of missing time, Chapman hasn't been stretched out and hasn't pitched many innings at all, especially over the past year and a half.

4) Perhaps Chapman was working on developing a cutter or trying to add more movement to his pitches (a la Leake) and wanted to take a few mph off his fastball to get more movement.

5) Perhaps the Reds told him to take it easy with his fastball and work on secondary pitches or simply to throw at less than peake performance.

In other words, while one start may tell us some things, it certainly isn't a harbinger of things to come, nor would it mean he isn't necessarily ready.

And, for the record, I do think Chapman could learn a few things in AAA.
The basics of covering the 1B bag.
Hitting and bunting.
Holding runners on.
(More importantly) better arm action on his change-up.
Better overall control. (Though that is improving.)

But a bunch of guys learn that stuff at the major league level. He's not going to set the world on fire, more than likely, at the major league level, but, if called up today, he'd be serviceable, if only because he has HOF talent in his left arm that cannot be taught.

lollipopcurve
04-29-2010, 01:19 PM
He may not be ready as a starter, but it sounds as if the scout feels he could be a dominating reliever as soon as this season.

That might work nicely for the Reds. They've got plenty of rotation options, and it would allow for an easier transition to the bigs for Chapman -- fewer innings, less pressure, etc.

Ultimately he's going to start.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 01:49 PM
He may not be ready as a starter, but it sounds as if the scout feels he could be a dominating reliever as soon as this season.

That might work nicely for the Reds. They've got plenty of rotation options, and it would allow for an easier transition to the bigs for Chapman -- fewer innings, less pressure, etc.

Ultimately he's going to start.

I think he could certainly be a good to very good reliever today in the majors. But if the Reds want him to start, he need a while in the minors. His best game control wise was last night and it was still pretty bad. With that said, it was a mirror image of his other starts from what I saw. He couldn't throw the offspeed stuff for strikes much last night and has been able to in the past. In the past he struggled to throw the fastball for strikes consistently and last night he was able to at a higher rate than in the past.

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 02:39 PM
That's the beauty of baseball. Everbody has an opinion. At one point last night I was thinking about how Chapman would make a good closer because of his fastball. But I think with his fastball and slider -- which is great more often than it's very hittable -- he should be a starter, plus he showed a decent changeup last night even if he only threw it a few times. His changeup had a lot of movement, more than I expected, and the speed was good -- low 80s -- which is a tough adjustment when it looks like a fastball that should come in at 95-plus.

But, Piliere, who has probably seen more baseball at a high level than I have, thinks he'd make a great reliever. There's no way to tell who's right at this point. Teams have shown the willingness to use future starters in the pen -- Rangers' Neftali Feliz and Mets' Jenrry Mejia stand out -- so it's at least reasonable to think the Reds might consider that move if they aren't already.

texasdave
04-29-2010, 02:52 PM
My only wish is that the Reds had five starters down in Louisville that sucked as badly as Chapman obviously does.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 03:00 PM
My only wish is that the Reds had five starters down in Louisville that sucked as badly as Chapman obviously does.

Comments like this are silly Dave. Chapman clearly doesn't suck. No one is saying he does. Some are saying that he isn't ready for the majors as a starter right now and unless he improves, he won't be a good starter because he struggles to throw the ball where he wants too and there are questions about his durability in at least one scouts eye (side note to this - first game I have seen Chapman's velo dip, could just have been the 40 degree weather in Scranton).

mdccclxix
04-29-2010, 03:04 PM
But, Piliere, who has probably seen more baseball at a high level than I have, thinks he'd make a great reliever. There's no way to tell who's right at this point. Teams have shown the willingness to use future starters in the pen -- Rangers' Neftali Feliz and Mets' Jenrry Mejia stand out -- so it's at least reasonable to think the Reds might consider that move if they aren't already.

Volquez and Chapman in the bullpen for the playoff push!

Superdude
04-29-2010, 03:11 PM
4) Perhaps Chapman was working on developing a cutter or trying to add more movement to his pitches (a la Leake) and wanted to take a few mph off his fastball to get more movement.

Wasn't there talks of Chapman throwing a two seamer in spring training? 87-91's a big drop in arm speed if he's not using it for more movement.

texasdave
04-29-2010, 03:14 PM
Comments like this are silly Dave. Chapman clearly doesn't suck. No one is saying he does. Some are saying that he isn't ready for the majors as a starter right now and unless he improves, he won't be a good starter because he struggles to throw the ball where he wants too and there are questions about his durability in at least one scouts eye (side note to this - first game I have seen Chapman's velo dip, could just have been the 40 degree weather in Scranton).

He is coming over here from another country and I imagine being on his own for the first time combined with the culture shock alone is crazy. On top of that he has made all of four starts in the minors. I am not sure why anyone would try to pass any type of judgement on what Chapman will or won't be at all under such circumstances. Aside from that I wonder how many minor league prospects, no matter how highly touted they are, are locked and loaded the second they step foot on a major league mound. I think judging what he will or won't be under such circumstances is what is really silly.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 03:21 PM
He is coming over here from another country and I imagine being on his own for the first time combined with the culture shock alone is crazy. On top of that he has made all of four starts in the minors. I am not sure why anyone would try to pass any type of judgement on what Chapman will or won't be at all under such circumstances. Aside from that I wonder how many minor league prospects, no matter how highly touted they are, are locked and loaded the second they step foot on a major league mound. I think judging what he will or won't be under such circumstances is what is really silly.

It is what guys like Frankie are paid to do. Watch baseball players and project what they will do in the future, regardless of whether they watch them throw 20 pitches or 1000.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 03:23 PM
Wasn't there talks of Chapman throwing a two seamer in spring training? 87-91's a big drop in arm speed if he's not using it for more movement.

Chapman does throw two fastballs. I like what he calls them though. Fastball and less fast fastball lol.

mdccclxix
04-29-2010, 03:36 PM
Comments like this are silly Dave. Chapman clearly doesn't suck. No one is saying he does. Some are saying that he isn't ready for the majors as a starter right now and unless he improves, he won't be a good starter because he struggles to throw the ball where he wants too and there are questions about his durability in at least one scouts eye (side note to this - first game I have seen Chapman's velo dip, could just have been the 40 degree weather in Scranton).

What's the difference between a 23 year old Ubaldo Jimenez and a 23 year old Aroldis Chapman? Both carry high walk rates and throw fast.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 03:50 PM
What's the difference between a 23 year old Ubaldo Jimenez and a 23 year old Aroldis Chapman? Both carry high walk rates and throw fast.

I don't know, I didn't watch Jiminez throw as a 23 year old. With Chapman though, his control is worse than the numbers show us (while typically the story can be told for overpowering guys in the minors, with Chapman, it has been worse than other guys in recent memory for me - David Price was a guy who had worse control than his AAA numbers suggested for example, he struggled to throw his fastball to the target in AAA in 2008 when I watched him a few different times). Of course its incredibly early and sometimes, especially with pitchers, one minor tweak to a delivery can fix control by quite a bit. But for right now, Chapman is struggling with control a lot more than his numbers suggest.

fearofpopvol1
04-29-2010, 03:52 PM
I wonder if the Reds would have been better off starting Chapman at AA?

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 03:57 PM
I don't know, I didn't watch Jiminez throw as a 23 year old. With Chapman though, his control is worse than the numbers show us (while typically the story can be told for overpowering guys in the minors, with Chapman, it has been worse than other guys in recent memory for me - David Price was a guy who had worse control than his AAA numbers suggested for example, he struggled to throw his fastball to the target in AAA in 2008 when I watched him a few different times). Of course its incredibly early and sometimes, especially with pitchers, one minor tweak to a delivery can fix control by quite a bit. But for right now, Chapman is struggling with control a lot more than his numbers suggest.

It was just one game, but he didn't appear to have any control issues last night. His strike-to-ball ratio was 2-to-1 and he regularly pitched inside to righties and lefties. One of the three walks he allowed was a 10-pitch at bat with four foul balls after he got two strikes.

RedsManRick
04-29-2010, 04:15 PM
Call me crazy but I'd still like to see Chapman eased in via the bullpen. Let him work on things under the tutelage of our best pitching coach without the pressure and pitch counts that come as a starter.

Sea Ray
04-29-2010, 04:17 PM
I think Chapman is as advertised. He hits 100 with his FB but struggles with off speed pitches but that doesn't mean we throw him in the bullpen. They need to develop him as a starter because starters are far more valuable than relievers. It wouldn't be unheard of to kick off his big league career in the pen. They did the same thing with Mario Soto and Jose Rijo and the Rays did this as well with David Price.

Chapman's skills would be wasted as a closer. He needs to control his off speed stuff just like Randy Johnson and Nolan Ryan before him. He is not ready for the bigs yet. This is not news.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 04:40 PM
It was just one game, but he didn't appear to have any control issues last night. His strike-to-ball ratio was 2-to-1 and he regularly pitched inside to righties and lefties. One of the three walks he allowed was a 10-pitch at bat with four foul balls after he got two strikes.

Strike to ball ratio doesn't tell us much though, especially for a guy who has the stuff that flat out overmatches most hitters in the lineup. Like I noted, last night was his best control game so far and he wasn't all that good.

I have charted his games in the past and he was missing the catchers target big time, often, in those games. Yet his strike rate was 'average' if you just looked at his strikes/balls because it counts the times guys swung at a fastball at their eyes or a foot outside because they had to start their swing early to catch up to a 95+ MPH fastball.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 04:40 PM
Call me crazy but I'd still like to see Chapman eased in via the bullpen. Let him work on things under the tutelage of our best pitching coach without the pressure and pitch counts that come as a starter.

I am for this too.... just not until he throws about 100 innings as a starter in the minors.

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 05:01 PM
Strike to ball ratio doesn't tell us much though, especially for a guy who has the stuff that flat out overmatches most hitters in the lineup. Like I noted, last night was his best control game so far and he wasn't all that good.

I have charted his games in the past and he was missing the catchers target big time, often, in those games. Yet his strike rate was 'average' if you just looked at his strikes/balls because it counts the times guys swung at a fastball at their eyes or a foot outside because they had to start their swing early to catch up to a 95+ MPH fastball.

What did you see, hear or read that suggested his control wasn't all that good last night? I sat directly behind home plate for all six innings last night and I can say with confidence that his control was good.

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree about the strike-to-ball ratio being a sign of a pitcher's control. I would point out, though, that I don't think you should hold it against Chapman when a hitter chases a pitch out of the zone. The goal isn't always to get a strike by throwing the ball over the plate. Sometimes it's to throw a pitch out of the strike zone that will hopefully get the hitter to chase it. Chapman was able to do that a few times last night with two strikes, and that's a good sign.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 05:12 PM
What did you see, hear or read that suggested his control wasn't all that good last night? I sat directly behind home plate for all six innings last night and I can say with confidence that his control was good.

I watched the game from home. He was missing Corky Millers initial target a bit too much for me to say his control was good last night. I can say that with confidence.



I guess we'll have to agree to disagree about the strike-to-ball ratio being a sign of a pitcher's control. I would point out, though, that I don't think you should hold it against Chapman when a hitter chases a pitch out of the zone. The goal isn't always to get a strike by throwing the ball over the plate. Sometimes it's to throw a pitch out of the strike zone that will hopefully get the hitter to chase it. Chapman was able to do that a few times last night with two strikes, and that's a good sign.
Why shouldn't I hold it against him if a hitter chases the pitch out of the zone when the target set up by the catcher that he was supposed to hit was well within the zone? Sure, its result is good, but he certainly missed his spot. If the catcher sets up or slaps the dirt to try and let the pitcher know, throw it outside/inside or in the dirt to get the guy to chase, then that is fine. But when the catcher shows the target at point X and then the pitch is 12-18 inches from point X, its not good control even if the end result is good.

mth123
04-29-2010, 05:26 PM
He may not be ready as a starter, but it sounds as if the scout feels he could be a dominating reliever as soon as this season.

That might work nicely for the Reds. They've got plenty of rotation options, and it would allow for an easier transition to the bigs for Chapman -- fewer innings, less pressure, etc.

Ultimately he's going to start.

125 IP in the AAA rotation and a call-up to the pen when the team deals off Arthur Rhodes to a contender for a position player to help out. (I think Rhodes to Tampa Bay, who only seems to lack a lefty bullpen arm to be real threat, for Reid Brignac is a match made in heaven).

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 06:32 PM
I watched the game from home. He was missing Corky Millers initial target a bit too much for me to say his control was good last night. I can say that with confidence.


Why shouldn't I hold it against him if a hitter chases the pitch out of the zone when the target set up by the catcher that he was supposed to hit was well within the zone? Sure, its result is good, but he certainly missed his spot. If the catcher sets up or slaps the dirt to try and let the pitcher know, throw it outside/inside or in the dirt to get the guy to chase, then that is fine. But when the catcher shows the target at point X and then the pitch is 12-18 inches from point X, its not good control even if the end result is good.

I guess we have different expectations, or maybe different definitions of what's considered hitting a spot and good control. Anyway, he's only going to get better, which is a good thing for the Reds and their fans.

GIDP
04-29-2010, 06:45 PM
Bullpen or what ever

sorry its just too good of a quote to not use

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 08:59 PM
Here's (http://wp.me/pOmoa-tS) a possible explanation for why I had Chapman at 103 last night and nobody else had him above 101.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 09:22 PM
Here's (http://wp.me/pOmoa-tS) a possible explanation for why I had Chapman at 103 last night and nobody else had him above 101.

I don't buy into that explanation for a second. The pitch is generally measured at 40-45 feet, before the 'late movement' happens. If it was measuring how fast the pitch was as it crossed home plate, it would have registered at 92-93 MPH.

Also, for future reference, the site frowns upon linking to ones own site within threads. You can put it in the signature and its cool, but linking to your own articles is generally frowned upon.

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 09:56 PM
I don't buy into that explanation for a second. The pitch is generally measured at 40-45 feet, before the 'late movement' happens. If it was measuring how fast the pitch was as it crossed home plate, it would have registered at 92-93 MPH.

Also, for future reference, the site frowns upon linking to ones own site within threads. You can put it in the signature and its cool, but linking to your own articles is generally frowned upon.

I apologize. I didn't see anything when I signed up about rules prohibiting linking to one's own site. If I missed a Terms of Service or similar page where that's posted, I apologize.

You've been refuting everything I've said today, so if I'm not welcome for some reason, just say so. No need to tell me I'm violating site rules. Just be honest if that's the case. Others seem to enjoy my discussion and reading my blog, but if I've done something wrong, please tell me.

As for the explanation about the 103 reading, I know more than nothing about doppler radar, so when I heard this, it made sense. What you said also makes sense, but I tend to believe a man who basically has a radar gun on his hip 12 months a year.

OnBaseMachine
04-29-2010, 10:08 PM
From Jamie Ramsey's blog:


"Chapman was very impressive. He did everything we want him to. He also had command of his change-up, his breaking ball pitches, and he worked six innings for the first time this season....Chapman not only pitched well, he got to work on his defense. He made two bad pitches, but he kept his composure." - Louisville manager Rick Sweet (The Times Leader)

"(Chapman) threw electric stuff. He's tall and lanky and he's very good...It was not a fun at-bat. If you're going to choose someone to hit against, it wouldn't be Chapman. Anyone who throws 100 mph anytime he chooses is very special." - Scranton's David Winfree who belted 1 of the 2 homers allowed by Chapman
(The Times Leader)


http://ramsey.mlblogs.com/archives/2010/04/reds-farm-report-42910.html

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 10:15 PM
I apologize. I didn't see anything when I signed up about rules prohibiting linking to one's own site. If I missed a Terms of Service or similar page where that's posted, I apologize.

You've been refuting everything I've said today, so if I'm not welcome for some reason, just say so. No need to tell me I'm violating site rules. Just be honest if that's the case. Others seem to enjoy my discussion and reading my blog, but if I've done something wrong, please tell me.

As for the explanation about the 103 reading, I know more than nothing about doppler radar, so when I heard this, it made sense. What you said also makes sense, but I tend to believe a man who basically has a radar gun on his hip 12 months a year.
I just know that it has been brought up on the site in the past and figured I would toss it to you as well. No problem at all with you here. The more the better.

As for the radar gun, the only reason I dispute what he says is that with the inception of Pitch F/X data we know that pitches for sure are moving much slower at the home plate than they are when they are leaving the pitchers hand. Pitch F/X readings are generally slightly higher than radar gun readings because of where they are initially measured (50 feet for PFX, and as noted 40-45 feet for radar guns). The difference is that with Pitch FX we also get an 'end speed' and pitches lose about 10% of their velocity from the measurement of 50 feet from home plate to crossing home plate. If the movement on the pitches were the cause for the misread, the reading would have come out much lower since it would read the speed in the last 10-15 feet and thus be about 90% of peak velocity, which if you got a 103, would have been about 110 MPH.

I would believe much more that perhaps you just happened to get an earlier reading, say at the point of release and the others around you picked up the normal 40-45 foot mark. That makes sense to me. The movement misread just doesn't add up given what we know.

I really hope you don't have any hard feelings because I have disagreed with you. Nothing was meant to be malicious at all, simply just disagreeing that is all. Hope you stick around. Just because we disagreed the first time we interacted doesn't mean its likely we will continue to.

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 10:16 PM
Just got a text from my friend who covers the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre team who talked to the scout about my 103 reading. He said that scout, Phil Rossi of the Marlins, and Gene "Stick" Michael of the Yankees both told him today that 103 could easily have been a legit speed for Chapman last night. So, maybe no explanation is needed.

dougdirt
04-29-2010, 10:17 PM
From Jamie Ramsey's blog:

"Chapman was very impressive. He did everything we want him to. He also had command of his change-up, his breaking ball pitches, and he worked six innings for the first time this season....

http://ramsey.mlblogs.com/archives/2010/04/reds-farm-report-42910.html

I will agree with the second part of that. I thought he threw his offspeed pitches much better than he had in his previous starts, at least in terms of locating them. It was his fastball he was struggling with last night from what I saw.

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 10:22 PM
I just know that it has been brought up on the site in the past and figured I would toss it to you as well. No problem at all with you here. The more the better.

As for the radar gun, the only reason I dispute what he says is that with the inception of Pitch F/X data we know that pitches for sure are moving much slower at the home plate than they are when they are leaving the pitchers hand. Pitch F/X readings are generally slightly higher than radar gun readings because of where they are initially measured (50 feet for PFX, and as noted 40-45 feet for radar guns). The difference is that with Pitch FX we also get an 'end speed' and pitches lose about 10% of their velocity from the measurement of 50 feet from home plate to crossing home plate. If the movement on the pitches were the cause for the misread, the reading would have come out much lower since it would read the speed in the last 10-15 feet and thus be about 90% of peak velocity, which if you got a 103, would have been about 110 MPH.

I would believe much more that perhaps you just happened to get an earlier reading, say at the point of release and the others around you picked up the normal 40-45 foot mark. That makes sense to me. The movement misread just doesn't add up given what we know.

I really hope you don't have any hard feelings because I have disagreed with you. Nothing was meant to be malicious at all, simply just disagreeing that is all. Hope you stick around. Just because we disagreed the first time we interacted doesn't mean its likely we will continue to.

No hard feelings. I just got the impression that you were trying to get rid of me. It's hard to decipher that sort of thing from text on a computer screen. Anyway, no problem.

I understand everything you're saying about the radar gun even though I've never gotten into the pitch F/X stuff. (As a coach, I've always been more interested in mechanics, philosophies of pitching to hitters, etc., and use the gun mainly as a recruiting tool.) And I know the gun reads the speed well before it reaches the plate. But I usually listen intently when a scout says something, which is why I believed what he said may have caused my reading.

But, as I just posted above, my friend said both that scout and Stick Michael told him that they both wouldn't doubt that Chapman hit 103 last night, so maybe no explanation is needed.

Boss-Hog
04-29-2010, 10:42 PM
You are welcome here and we appreciate the insight you've provided. As doug said, you're more than welcome to provide a link in your signature to your site but please refrain from starting posts that serve only to link to an external site. If you have any questions, please send me a PM.

RS17TIMES
04-29-2010, 10:50 PM
You are welcome here and we appreciate the insight you've provided. As doug said, you're more than welcome to provide a link in your signature to your site but please refrain from starting posts that serve only to link to an external site. If you have any questions, please send me a PM.

Will do. I apologize for any mistakes on my part.

REDblooded
04-29-2010, 11:03 PM
I love watching Doug argue with a guy who pitched above the high school level...

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 03:12 AM
I love watching Doug argue with a guy who pitched above the high school level...

I love trying to figure out what that has to do with ones knowledge about pitching.... :confused:

GoReds
04-30-2010, 07:23 AM
Doug - do you chart other pitcher's pitch locations as well (I suspect you do). If so, can you indicate how Chapman's location differs from some of the other pitchers, such as Lecure and Lehr?

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 10:39 AM
Doug - do you chart other pitcher's pitch locations as well (I suspect you do). If so, can you indicate how Chapman's location differs from some of the other pitchers, such as Lecure and Lehr?

I have not charted a game for either of those guys yet. I did chart Travis Wood's last start. Wood 'missed' his spot in innings 1-7 a total of 4 times. Now I will say that is probably the best game I have ever charted in terms of control. But of the ones I have charted, Chapman's start 2 weeks ago was the worst I have charted in terms of control.

GoReds
04-30-2010, 11:27 AM
I have not charted a game for either of those guys yet. I did chart Travis Wood's last start. Wood 'missed' his spot in innings 1-7 a total of 4 times. Now I will say that is probably the best game I have ever charted in terms of control. But of the ones I have charted, Chapman's start 2 weeks ago was the worst I have charted in terms of control.

Chapman being the worst that you've charted, can you name some other guys who are just above him?

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 12:36 PM
Chapman being the worst that you've charted, can you name some other guys who are just above him?

Josh Ravin and JC Sulbaran. I actually have one game of Sulbaran where he was worse, but he also threw less than an inning that game (as a starter).

REDblooded
04-30-2010, 12:38 PM
I love trying to figure out what that has to do with ones knowledge about pitching.... :confused:

It's kind of like a guy playing Modern Warfare for 3 months straight, and reading a couple of books about war, and then trying to go lecture a platoon of Marines on what to expect in order to be successful in Afghanistan...

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 12:45 PM
It's kind of like a guy playing Modern Warfare for 3 months straight, and reading a couple of books about war, and then trying to go lecture a platoon of Marines on what to expect in order to be successful in Afghanistan...

Who is the best pitching coach in baseball? If it isn't Dave Duncan, he is in the top 3, yes? How many games did he pitch above high school? Oh, zero.

How many scouts were pitchers beyond high school? Does that make them unqualified to scout pitchers? What about pitchers who are now scouts, are they unqualified to scout anyone but pitchers?

Now I clearly am no scout. But because I didn't pitch above high school means that I simply can't possess the knowledge as someone who did is erroneous in the slightest and insulting.

RS17TIMES
04-30-2010, 01:03 PM
Who is the best pitching coach in baseball? If it isn't Dave Duncan, he is in the top 3, yes? How many games did he pitch above high school? Oh, zero.

How many scouts were pitchers beyond high school? Does that make them unqualified to scout pitchers? What about pitchers who are now scouts, are they unqualified to scout anyone but pitchers?

Now I clearly am no scout. But because I didn't pitch above high school means that I simply can't possess the knowledge as someone who did is erroneous in the slightest and insulting.

By just saying that Duncan didn't pitch above high school, you make him sound like someone who didn't play the game past the age of 18. He spent 11 years in the majors as a catcher, which probably has the most intimate knowledge of pitching outside of actually being a pitcher.

But I do agree with you that not pitching above high school doesn't mean someone can't understand pitching.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 01:41 PM
By just saying that Duncan didn't pitch above high school, you make him sound like someone who didn't play the game past the age of 18. He spent 11 years in the majors as a catcher, which probably has the most intimate knowledge of pitching outside of actually being a pitcher.

But I do agree with you that not pitching above high school doesn't mean someone can't understand pitching.

The point wasn't that he wasn't a pro, it was that he was not a pitcher past high school (or maybe even in high school - honestly don't know) and because of that, then he clearly can't know pitching according to the previous poster. Which of course is ridiculous. I am friends with a scout who played in high school, but didn't play in college and began being a scout at the age of 42 after working as a salesman for 20 years or so. He apparently is no qualified either. Someone should probably call his parent club and tell them they should let him go.

Of course its all just going to an extreme to make a point, similar to what the original poster did.

TRF
04-30-2010, 02:45 PM
Of course, dismissing the thoughts of someone that IS coaching at a level higher than high school seems a bit odd.

So here we have a new poster. One that coaches at the college level, and coaches the sport we all love, and instead of picking his brain for nuances of pitching, philosophies etc, we are arguing the semantics of missing your mark.

How very Redszonian. We do eat our young here don't we?

I'm more amazed we haven't bombarded him with questions. Instead we get questions like how many games dougdirt has charted.

oy flippin vey.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 03:08 PM
Of course, dismissing the thoughts of someone that IS coaching at a level higher than high school seems a bit odd.

So here we have a new poster. One that coaches at the college level, and coaches the sport we all love, and instead of picking his brain for nuances of pitching, philosophies etc, we are arguing the semantics of missing your mark.

How very Redszonian. We do eat our young here don't we?

I'm more amazed we haven't bombarded him with questions. Instead we get questions like how many games dougdirt has charted.

oy flippin vey.
I don't think anyone is dismissing it at all. In fact, it has not been brought up once on Redszone that RS17 was actually a pitcher in college or a current pitching coach in college until the 4th page of this thread (unless I missed it, but I went back and looked). I am betting that 95% of the people who read this thread didn't know he was, so they clearly weren't going to ask questions aside from Chapman observations.

TRF
04-30-2010, 03:26 PM
I don't think anyone is dismissing it at all. In fact, it has not been brought up once on Redszone that RS17 was actually a pitcher in college or a current pitching coach in college until the 4th page of this thread (unless I missed it, but I went back and looked). I am betting that 95% of the people who read this thread didn't know he was, so they clearly weren't going to ask questions aside from Chapman observations.


It's going to be colder tonight than it was last night, too. I know Donnie Collins, who wrote that story, very well. Check out his blog at blogs.thetimes-tribune.com/yankees/ (http://blogs.thetimes-tribune.com/yankees/) to see what he thinks of Chapman tonight. He's already asked me for some input and my radar gun readings tonight. Should be a fun night despite the weather.

That link, which BTW was not to his site but to another writer's site, clearly stated he is the pitching coach at the University of Scranton. This was a few days before he posted the thread giving his opinion. I have no idea if you read the page that link went to, but I did. It's cool to get other opinions.

just sayin'.

REDblooded
04-30-2010, 03:31 PM
Of course, dismissing the thoughts of someone that IS coaching at a level higher than high school seems a bit odd.

So here we have a new poster. One that coaches at the college level, and coaches the sport we all love, and instead of picking his brain for nuances of pitching, philosophies etc, we are arguing the semantics of missing your mark.

How very Redszonian. We do eat our young here don't we?

I'm more amazed we haven't bombarded him with questions. Instead we get questions like how many games dougdirt has charted.

oy flippin vey.

And here we get the basis of my comment towards Doug...

Doug, to be fair, you pretty much took an "I'm all knowing" stance against this guy in a hurry... I don't always disagree with what you say (in fact, I probably agree with about 3/4's of your opinions), but on this one it was pretty bad... I had already visited his site and read his background, so I could see where he was coming from... My feeling on you Doug is that you do possess a great deal of information. You try to break down the game at a deeper level, and have a few decent connections that keep you informed. However, I can tell that you are still a young baseball fan, and albeit WAY more dedicated to learning than most, you're still putting it all together... That's no knock on you at all, but as a suggestion I wouldn't argue so vehemently against something like this unless you're 100% sure on it... And your dislike or doubt for Chapman has been pretty obvious since the day he was signed, so I don't get the feeling that you're arguments have been purely based on intelligence vs. emotion...

To get this back on Chapman... Give me a pitcher that has velocity and movement and tends to miss his spots where hitters still can't put good wood on the ball and I'll take it...

GIDP
04-30-2010, 03:39 PM
I pitched for the florence freedom is that below or above high school?

I didnt really.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 03:48 PM
And here we get the basis of my comment towards Doug...

Doug, to be fair, you pretty much took an "I'm all knowing" stance against this guy in a hurry... I don't always disagree with what you say (in fact, I probably agree with about 3/4's of your opinions), but on this one it was pretty bad... I had already visited his site and read his background, so I could see where he was coming from... My feeling on you Doug is that you do possess a great deal of information. You try to break down the game at a deeper level, and have a few decent connections that keep you informed. However, I can tell that you are still a young baseball fan, and albeit WAY more dedicated to learning than most, you're still putting it all together... That's no knock on you at all, but as a suggestion I wouldn't argue so vehemently against something like this unless you're 100% sure on it... And your dislike or doubt for Chapman has been pretty obvious since the day he was signed, so I don't get the feeling that you're arguments have been purely based on intelligence vs. emotion...

To get this back on Chapman... Give me a pitcher that has velocity and movement and tends to miss his spots where hitters still can't put good wood on the ball and I'll take it...

So because I think that Chapman needs more time it is based on emotion rather than what I have seen because when he was first signed I said that I wanted to see more from him before anointing him a better prospect than Fraizer or Alonso and advised caution because of conflicting scouting reports on him?

I am 100% sure on what I said with Chapman within this thread. Absolutely 100% sure about it. He missed his spots, though less than he has in the past, often. The hitters made his command seem better, especially if we look solely at the numbers of strikes, by being overmatched and chasing pitches out of the zone. There were even some actual strikes where he missed his spots where the catcher sets up low and in (in the zone), but would catch it in the upper outside corner of the zone. Yes, it was a strike, but it didn't display good control because he missed his spot.

TRF
04-30-2010, 03:58 PM
So because I think that Chapman needs more time it is based on emotion rather than what I have seen because when he was first signed I said that I wanted to see more from him before anointing him a better prospect than Fraizer or Alonso and advised caution because of conflicting scouting reports on him?

I am 100% sure on what I said with Chapman within this thread. Absolutely 100% sure about it. He missed his spots, though less than he has in the past, often. The hitters made his command seem better, especially if we look solely at the numbers of strikes, by being overmatched and chasing pitches out of the zone. There were even some actual strikes where he missed his spots where the catcher sets up low and in (in the zone), but would catch it in the upper outside corner of the zone. Yes, it was a strike, but it didn't display good control because he missed his spot.

And you are basing this on the cameras at a AAA park. On your TV. His assessment was from no more than 50 feet away. And he backs it with a coaching background in the field of pitching.

But it wasn't what you said, it was how you said it. It came off rude, like he was infringing on your territory. In fact, I'm still amazed you haven't actually asked him a question about pitching, cuz I'm willing to bet he knows quite a bit on the subject.

Tommyjohn25
04-30-2010, 04:08 PM
Take the personal comments private. RS17, welcome to the board. We all look forward to your insight as much as anyone else on the board.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 04:13 PM
And you are basing this on the cameras at a AAA park. On your TV. His assessment was from no more than 50 feet away. And he backs it with a coaching background in the field of pitching.

But it wasn't what you said, it was how you said it. It came off rude, like he was infringing on your territory.

Watched on TV. Not sure why that would be 'less ideal' to use to determine control. Unlike being behind home plate, I can actually see exactly where the catcher holds his target and exactly where the catcher catches the ball. In terms of control especially, I don't think it takes any baseball background at all to look where the catcher sets his initial target and watch where the catcher actually catches the ball. My brother who doesn't know much about baseball at all (I know, I failed him) could do that. That is really the only thing I brought up in this entire thread outside of the radar gun reading. As I noted in the first page or two, if I came off rude, I didn't mean that in the slightest, I was just strongly disagreeing with the control being good for Chapman in the game last night (at the time).

Homer Bailey
04-30-2010, 04:18 PM
My take on this "debate" is that I saw the pitch charting that Doug did on one of Chapman's starts, and it was disturbing. He was not hitting the spots he was aiming for. He's getting away with it at AAA, but I don't think Doug sees him getting away with that at the big boy level. Don't mean to put words in Doug's mouth, but he has seen Chapman pitch more than RS has, and probably from a better view. Yes, I think watching a game on TV is better (from a pitch charting standpoint) than watching it in person, especially depending upon the angle at which you are sitting. Doug's opinion is based on seeing Chapman multiple times, whereas RS has seen him just this once (correct me if I'm wrong).

My opinion is that you can watch someone one time and think something completely different than someone who has watched him more than one time. Differences of opinion ARE OK! Scouts have 'em all the time. GM's have 'em. Coaches have 'em. It's not that big of a deal.

RS, I very much appreciated your input and your blog post. Please stick around.

TRF
04-30-2010, 05:20 PM
Yes, I think watching a game on TV is better (from a pitch charting standpoint) than watching it in person, especially depending upon the angle at which you are sitting. Doug's opinion is based on seeing Chapman multiple times, whereas RS has seen him just this once (correct me if I'm wrong).

My opinion is that you can watch someone one time and think something completely different than someone who has watched him more than one time. Differences of opinion ARE OK! Scouts have 'em all the time. GM's have 'em. Coaches have 'em. It's not that big of a deal.

RS, I very much appreciated your input and your blog post. Please stick around.

Then why do scouts go to games? How much do you not see on TV? Do you see how he warms up between innings? Do you get the overall approach? An in person account was all we had to go on, several months ago, and now we get more in person accounts, and they are wholly disregarded. And it's not like the guy is an amateur. He gets paid to know about pitching. Do any of us?

I'm not saying his word is gospel, but I have watched one of Chapman's games, and I completely disagreed with doug's assessment of him missing his spots by "18 inches". Chapman isn't Maddux by any means, but he's been pretty dominating at AAA. And I don't think that is luck.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 05:25 PM
Then why do scouts go to games? How much do you not see on TV? Do you see how he warms up between innings? Do you get the overall approach? An in person account was all we had to go on, several months ago, and now we get more in person accounts, and they are wholly disregarded. And it's not like the guy is an amateur. He gets paid to know about pitching. Do any of us?

I'm not saying his word is gospel, but I have watched one of Chapman's games, and I completely disagreed with doug's assessment of him missing his spots by "18 inches". Chapman isn't Maddux by any means, but he's been pretty dominating at AAA. And I don't think that is luck.

You answered your own question. Scouts can see things at games that they can't on tv. How does he field his position, especially on plays to the right side of the infield or on plays to the outfield where the pitcher needs to back up the throws. Or how the guy warms up or what he does in warm ups. Accurate radar readings. You can talk to the players in person. Talk to his teammates, his coaches. People around him all the time. Most of that stuff you aren't getting by watching on TV.

Which game did you watch TRF? Do you have an MILB.tv subscription? If so, I would ask that if you get some spare time, just go back and chart the game. Note where Castillo/Miller set up the target. Note where they caught the pitch. At the end of the game, I think it will be quite telling. He is dominating AAA and it surely isn't luck. His stuff overmatches these guys, big time. It won't be that way in the majors so much. When he isn't overmatching those guys, he is going to have to be a pitcher, not a thrower. Right now, he is a thrower with amazing raw pitching abilities.

TRF
04-30-2010, 05:40 PM
You answered your own question. Scouts can see things at games that they can't on tv. How does he field his position, especially on plays to the right side of the infield or on plays to the outfield where the pitcher needs to back up the throws. Or how the guy warms up or what he does in warm ups. Accurate radar readings. You can talk to the players in person. Talk to his teammates, his coaches. People around him all the time. Most of that stuff you aren't getting by watching on TV.

Which game did you watch TRF? Do you have an MILB.tv subscription? If so, I would ask that if you get some spare time, just go back and chart the game. Note where Castillo/Miller set up the target. Note where they caught the pitch. At the end of the game, I think it will be quite telling. He is dominating AAA and it surely isn't luck. His stuff overmatches these guys, big time. It won't be that way in the majors so much. When he isn't overmatching those guys, he is going to have to be a pitcher, not a thrower. Right now, he is a thrower with amazing raw pitching abilities.

I watched his first game. It was freely available on MLB.com, as was Strasburg's. Sadly I can't really afford the time or money for either MLB or MILB.com subscriptions. My kids don't see me enough as it is. (1 fulltime job, teaching part time.)

But I just didn't see the same thing you did. What I do see is a kid adjusting to a new schedule, new country and new life. I saw a kid with dominating stuff that can pitch out of the zone with good movement. He's certainly not a finished product, and there is more than one reason for him to be in the minors, but isn't it interesting that he's in AAA and not AA like Strasburg? That could be a proximity issue, Louisville is much closer than Carolina, but he isn't getting roughed up there like you often portray him. Case in point, Leake's first three starts: 13 BB's, 13K's. IMO Chapman could have done as well if not better. But Leake migh be better suited AT THIS TIME to make adjustments in his game. So I have no real issue with him on the Reds right now. But for a guy that has loved Bailey his entire professional career, it seems odd that you are so critical of Chapman, whose ceiling is MUCH higher than Bailey's.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 05:50 PM
I watched his first game. It was freely available on MLB.com, as was Strasburg's. Sadly I can't really afford the time or money for either MLB or MILB.com subscriptions. My kids don't see me enough as it is. (1 fulltime job, teaching part time.)
Fair enough.



But I just didn't see the same thing you did. What I do see is a kid adjusting to a new schedule, new country and new life. I saw a kid with dominating stuff that can pitch out of the zone with good movement. I saw a lot of that too. I am specifically referring to his control. Not his stuff. Not his ceiling. His ability to throw the ball to the target that the catcher places. In the game you saw, the opposing manager noted after the game that Chapman probably walks 8 or 9 major leaguers if he threw that exact game because they wouldn't have been overmatched and expanding the zone. C Trent echoed those sentiments as well.


but he isn't getting roughed up there like you often portray him. Case in point, Leake's first three starts: 13 BB's, 13K's. IMO Chapman could have done as well if not better. But Leake migh be better suited AT THIS TIME to make adjustments in his game. So I have no real issue with him on the Reds right now. But for a guy that has loved Bailey his entire professional career, it seems odd that you are so critical of Chapman, whose ceiling is MUCH higher than Bailey's.
I don't think I have once said anything about him getting roughed up. I have said multiple times that he has problems throwing the ball to the target and that he is flat overmatching guys in AAA and its hiding his control problems for now. As for the comparison to Leake, if we are solely looking at the numbers, then sure. But if we actually look at the games, we can see that Leake was missing his spots on the corners by inches and walking guys. While Chapman was missing outside on pitches called for on the inside part of the plate. There is a drastic difference between control of the two guys. As for Bailey, his control, the ability to throw to the catchers mitt, was better in AAA than any one game I have seen from Chapman thus far. The difference is, his stuff is better and its overmatching the guys.

REDblooded
04-30-2010, 05:59 PM
The only issue though, and I've heard this plenty from commentators on TV, is that the angle of the camera can skew things a touch... So you don't always "see" what you think you see...

TRF
04-30-2010, 06:00 PM
I saw a lot of that too. I am specifically referring to his control. Not his stuff. Not his ceiling. His ability to throw the ball to the target that the catcher places. In the game you saw, the opposing manager noted after the game that Chapman probably walks 8 or 9 major leaguers if he threw that exact game because they wouldn't have been overmatched and expanding the zone. C Trent echoed those sentiments as well.


My point is considering all the adjustments he's had to make, it's possible he isn't quite on the same page, or fully vested in the Reds program yet. I think he's pitching his game. That may not be a good thing, But I think maybe in his mind he knows where he can throw a pitch that will induce a swing, and he know not much will happen with it. That may not be reality, but it may be his approach. I have no idea if this is the case, but in my mind it is more than plausible.



I don't think I have once said anything about him getting roughed up. I have said multiple times that he has problems throwing the ball to the target and that he is flat overmatching guys in AAA and its hiding his control problems for now. As for the comparison to Leake, if we are solely looking at the numbers, then sure. But if we actually look at the games, we can see that Leake was missing his spots on the corners by inches and walking guys. While Chapman was missing outside on pitches called for on the inside part of the plate. There is a drastic difference between control of the two guys. As for Bailey, his control, the ability to throw to the catchers mitt, was better in AAA than any one game I have seen from Chapman thus far. The difference is, his stuff is better and its overmatching the guys.

You've seen 4 games. 4. Only after Bailey's 3rd year in AAA did he get his BB's under control. This is the single most exciting pitching prospect the Reds have had in my lifetime. Maybe Soto, but I was a little young to be following minor leaguers then. Tell it straight, don't sugarcoat it, but at least mention the positives.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 06:02 PM
The only issue though, and I've heard this plenty from commentators on TV, is that the angle of the camera can skew things a touch... So you don't always "see" what you think you see...

While I think it could be true that you may not see the inside or outside corners well enough to call strikes, you can absolutely tell the catcher setting up near the inside and catching it on the other side of the plate, easily.

Off topic slightly with the camera angles.... has anyone else noticed the angle the Texas Rangers home broadcast uses? Its akin to the Reds using a camera on top of the party deck over the batters eye. It is so strange watching highlights from their games. It really messes with you because it seems everyone else uses a camera just over the center field wall.

dougdirt
04-30-2010, 06:12 PM
But I think maybe in his mind he knows where he can throw a pitch that will induce a swing, and he know not much will happen with it. That may not be reality, but it may be his approach. I have no idea if this is the case, but in my mind it is more than plausible.
Even if this is the case, my point still stands as I have stated it. He misses the catchers target, a lot. Intended or not (and I don't believe its intended because at times he hits it perfectly), he is missing the catchers target and that is what I have been stating since game 1.



You've seen 4 games. 4. Only after Bailey's 3rd year in AAA did he get his BB's under control. This is the single most exciting pitching prospect the Reds have had in my lifetime. Maybe Soto, but I was a little young to be following minor leaguers then. Tell it straight, don't sugarcoat it, but at least mention the positives.
I have seen 6 games, including spring training ones. Again though, you seem to be talking about a different thing than I am. You keep bringing up walks. I am bringing up control. The two things aren't always going hand in hand. In his 4 starts in AAA, Chapman has not walked a lot of guys, but he has thrown a lot of pitches that were caught out of the zone that guys chased. Pitches that I don't believe would be chased nearly as often by major league hitters who wouldn't have to cheat on the fastball like most AAA guys do. Bailey had some control issues in AA, but for some of it it came down to him lacking a put away pitch. When guys could foul off his fastball, he would not have another pitch to go to in order to get them out and it led to longer at bats and walks. Chapman doesn't have that same problem. His stuff compared to Baileys, especially at times when Bailey was in AAA, isn't comparable at all. In scouting terms it was like an 80 to a 45/50. What I am saying though is that if Bailey (AAA version) and Chapman magically had batters removed from the scenario, Bailey would have had more strikeouts and fewer walks than Chapman would have. Chapman just gets away with it more because his stuff is so overpowering.

REDblooded
04-30-2010, 06:48 PM
Would you not agree though, that as long as he's missing where hitters can't make solid contact, that it's not as big of an issue as that of a pitcher that just barely misses, but it's a meatball?

Homer Bailey
05-01-2010, 05:27 AM
If I may intervene again, in summary, Doug is saying that although Chapmans overall numbers have been outstanding, the way he is pitching now, he does not see it continuing at the next level. There is a difference between numbers at (insert any minor league level) and potential at the next level. Chapmans's "stuff" can't be hit by minor leaguers. But (correct me if I'm wrong) what Doug is saying is that MLB players wont be nearly as fooled as AAA players, and he has to hit his spots. What I agree about the most is that actual hitting of the spots. I can pitch tomorrow, and throw 80 out of 80 strikes, and not throw one good pitch. If I'm aiming on the outer half, and hang a two seamer at 90 MPH in the upper in part of the zone, and a AAA guy fouls it off, did I make a good pitch? If the AAA guy fouls it off, but Carlos Lee hits it for a home run, how do I determine if its a good pitch?

What I've learned about the minors (which is almost entirely from this site), it's that you can't look at results in a vacuum like people like to do. Heisey was INCREDIBLE (in a vacuum) last year. Yet (IMO) his skills don't translate to the next level. When considering all facts, he was old for his level, and was very underwhelming at AAA.

People give their opinions on players based on what they see. They are not right, and they are not wrong. It is an OPINION. Let's face it, none of us know how these minor leaguers are going to pan out. What we do know, is that we enjoy projecting their legacy, and enjoy watching them progress through the minor leagues. If you disagree on a player.... SO WHAT??? I know that I go off of only what I read on this board, and the numbers that I see. Am I right? WHO KNOWS? I know that I am not high on Heisey based on what I've read and seen. I know that TRF is VERY high on Heisey (and Dorn for that matter, which I also disagree with). I am not high on Heisey at all. If there were a consensus opinion on prospects, and everyone was always right, there wouldnt be scouts that get paid thousands for what we would gladly do for free. But that is what makes the minors fun to follow. Let's face it, we don't (and the Reds, along with other Orgs) don't know what these players are going to become. Five years ago, could you have predicted that JV would be this good? If you said yes to this question, I would call you a liar. At age 21 at A+ ball, he OPS'd .755 (granted it was in the FSL). In 7 minor league seasons, he ops'd .863. In 3 major league seasons, he ops'd .924. In summary? Numbers in the minors don't mean everything. A scouting report can mean everything if someone believes someones numbers don't translate to the next level.

REDblooded
05-01-2010, 01:43 PM
I'm not disagreeing that he needs to be able to hit his spots more accurately. My suggestion is simply that as long as he's missing in spots where hitters still can't square the ball up and drive it, it's not a big deal.

Scrap Irony
05-01-2010, 01:59 PM
Put another way, a player with 100 mph fastball has a lot more leeway on his spot than one who has a 90 mph fastball.

Add to that Chapman's very good movement and, though Chapman may "miss his spot", doug's assertion that he will get hit hard at the major league level makes less sense.

doug hasn't liked Chapman since the signing. He has a bias. It's not that big a deal. We all do. Like many other fans, when confronted with another's viewpoint, he got snippy and dismissed R17's opinion as invalid.

Happens to us all. (Or at least most of us.) No big deal.

REDblooded
05-01-2010, 02:14 PM
nothing to see here... lol

dougdirt
05-01-2010, 03:30 PM
I don't worry about Chapman getting hit hard. I worry about him walking seven a game and not making it five innings. I love the signing. I just know he has work to do before he is major league ready. Why that equates to me disliking it, I still don't understand.

REDblooded
05-01-2010, 06:08 PM
I don't worry about Chapman getting hit hard. I worry about him walking seven a game and not making it five innings. I love the signing. I just know he has work to do before he is major league ready. Why that equates to me disliking it, I still don't understand.

Fair enough... I also feel like he needs to get his pitch counts under control to reach full effectiveness...

As far as the perception of you not liking him... I think it goes to the fact that you were one of the few that spoke strongly about him not being the number 1 prospect in the organization from the day he was signed, and that you've nitpicked his game more than anybody else on these forums... Much more than you've nitpicked other players.

Mario-Rijo
05-01-2010, 08:40 PM
Fair enough... I also feel like he needs to get his pitch counts under control to reach full effectiveness...

As far as the perception of you not liking him... I think it goes to the fact that you were one of the few that spoke strongly about him not being the number 1 prospect in the organization from the day he was signed, and that you've nitpicked his game more than anybody else on these forums... Much more than you've nitpicked other players.

To be fair to Doug if he thinks he sees something he will give it to you straight, he isn't the type to be critical of something just so he can say he was right. You may be critical of his evaluations (we all do it at times) and that's reasonable but it's not fair to be critical of his morality. I'm not suggesting that is what you are implying but it could certainly be construed that way IMO.

dougdirt
05-02-2010, 02:28 AM
Fair enough... I also feel like he needs to get his pitch counts under control to reach full effectiveness...

As far as the perception of you not liking him... I think it goes to the fact that you were one of the few that spoke strongly about him not being the number 1 prospect in the organization from the day he was signed, and that you've nitpicked his game more than anybody else on these forums... Much more than you've nitpicked other players.

I think it just came off as more nitpicky because I seemed to be the only one around here saying 'wait and see' when he was signed. As for the time since he actually played, I have watched and charted all of his games. I posted what I saw. I don't usually post it on guys, but I also don't think people care as much when I chart Matt Maloney either.

GIDP
05-02-2010, 08:46 AM
I agree with Doug on pretty much everything in this thread.

KoryMac5
05-02-2010, 11:54 AM
nm

OnBaseMachine
05-02-2010, 01:01 PM
Another take on Chapman's start in SWB:

http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2010/04/29/at-second-glance-aroldis-chapman-reveals-flaws-needs-polish/#cntnt





Seems to mirror what many folks have said in this thread. It is an interesting article from a former scout.

That's the same article Doug linked to on the first page of this thread.

Here was my response to that:


That article by Frankie Piliere is one of the biggest overreactions I've seen in quite a while. Two months ago Frankie was ready to put Chapman in the Hall of Fame, now, after showing consistent heat in his previous three starts, his velocity dips a little for an inning or two and now all of a sudden Chapman belongs in the bullpen. Wow. Did he not consider the fact that Chapman was pitching in cold and windy weather conditions last night? That's the first time he's pitched in those types of conditions. Piliere loses some credibility with that article, IMO.

I agree that Chapman needs some more time in the minors, but come on, you really think he's a future reliever now? As Will Carroll noted, he's got two plus pitches and the potential for two more. He's a starter.

BearcatShane
05-02-2010, 01:12 PM
Another take on Chapman's start in SWB:

http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2010/04/29/at-second-glance-aroldis-chapman-reveals-flaws-needs-polish/#cntnt





Seems to mirror what many folks have said in this thread. It is an interesting article from a former scout.






I don't understand how someone at this stage right now could even suggest that Chapman looks like a future closer. After 4 starts? Maybe he hasn't looked sensational but how after just 4 starts when his ERA sits below 2 how a former scout could say that is beyond me. And just to be clear, maybe Chapman is a future closer, but I just don't see how one could say that after just 4 starts. He's 22, not 26. What if over his next two starts he throws 14 innings, strikes out 21 and walks 3? Is he then Johan Santana????

dougdirt
05-02-2010, 01:15 PM
I don't understand how someone at this stage right now could even suggest that Chapman looks like a future closer. After 4 starts? Maybe he hasn't looked sensational but how after just 4 starts when his ERA sits below 2 how a former scout could say that is beyond me. And just to be clear, maybe Chapman is a future closer, but I just don't see how one could say that after just 4 starts. He's 22, not 26. What if over his next two starts he throws 14 innings, strikes out 21 and walks 3? Is he then Johan Santana????

Because that is what scouts do. They make statements on players after seeing them once or twice.

I think that Frankie looked at what Chapman did, not the results he got. Looking at what Chapman did, rather than the results, you could certainly see where a guy comes from when he says 'reliever if he is pushed to the majors quickly and not given the time he needs to develop'.

BearcatShane
05-02-2010, 01:22 PM
Because that is what scouts do. They make statements on players after seeing them once or twice.

I think that Frankie looked at what Chapman did, not the results he got. Looking at what Chapman did, rather than the results, you could certainly see where a guy comes from when he says 'reliever if he is pushed to the majors quickly and not given the time he needs to develop'.

I guess. You know more about all that then me. But geez, 4 starts at the highest level of minor league baseball for a guy who hasn't been in the states for an entire year yet.. I think he's doing alright.

dougdirt
05-02-2010, 02:14 PM
I guess. You know more about all that then me. But geez, 4 starts at the highest level of minor league baseball for a guy who hasn't been in the states for an entire year yet.. I think he's doing alright.

Sure, he is getting results. But results don't translate like stuff and control does. Right now, Chapman is getting great results, but how he is going about getting them isn't likely to work anywhere near as well in the majors as a starter.

OnBaseMachine
05-02-2010, 02:52 PM
Blue Jays shortstop prospect Adeiny Hechavarria saw Chapman’s potential in Cuba’s National Series, when he was a rookie with Santiago and Chapman a rising star with Holguin. Hechavarria drilled a line drive past Chapman’s ear the first time they faced off, but he knew the lanky left-hander had special talent.

“He has a lot of tools and a lot of velocity,” Hechavarria said. “Facing him was very difficult.”

Indianapolis Indians third baseman Pedro Alvarez agrees.

Ten days ago, Alvarez stepped in against Chapman and before he could even swing, the fireballing southpaw had him down 0-2 with a changeup and a knee-buckling 93-m.p.h. slider.

Behind those two pitches Chapman didn’t even need his triple-digit heat — he struck Alvarez out staring at a 99-m.p.h. fastball.


http://www.thestar.com/sports/baseball/article/803385--chasing-his-dream-a-lonely-pursuit-for-cuban-phenom-aroldis-chapman

membengal
05-02-2010, 07:14 PM
It's clear from this thread that Chapman completely sux. I hope the Reds immediately deal him before the rest of baseball learns this...

GIDP
05-02-2010, 07:17 PM
Some times these forums seem like they are straight out of a womans PMSing mind.

RS17TIMES
05-02-2010, 08:30 PM
Sure, he is getting results. But results don't translate like stuff and control does. Right now, Chapman is getting great results, but how he is going about getting them isn't likely to work anywhere near as well in the majors as a starter.

Aren't results what ultimately matters? I agree with you that he has to continue to improve if he's going to be a good starter for years in the big leagues. But why is it so important that he gets those good results by throwing every pitch on the corner at the knees, or wherever the catcher happens to set up?

Not ever pitcher is Greg Maddux -- hitting spots consistently and pitching masterfully. Some guys with special arms and talent, like Chapman seems to have, can get good results consistently without being pinpoint every time out. Not every missed spot is a bad pitch. The goal is to miss in areas you can't get hurt. With a 95-plus mph fastball, Chapman has more margin for error.

I think in the end Chapman needs to be somewhere between what he is now and a guy who throws ever pitch with exact precision.

RedsManRick
05-02-2010, 09:18 PM
Aren't results what ultimately matters? I agree with you that he has to continue to improve if he's going to be a good starter for years in the big leagues. But why is it so important that he gets those good results by throwing every pitch on the corner at the knees, or wherever the catcher happens to set up?

Not ever pitcher is Greg Maddux -- hitting spots consistently and pitching masterfully. Some guys with special arms and talent, like Chapman seems to have, can get good results consistently without being pinpoint every time out. Not every missed spot is a bad pitch. The goal is to miss in areas you can't get hurt. With a 95-plus mph fastball, Chapman has more margin for error.

I think in the end Chapman needs to be somewhere between what he is now and a guy who throws ever pitch with exact precision.

I don't think anybody thinks you have to have Greg Maddux control to be successful in the majors. But AAA results do not automatically lead to MLB results. Pitchers can be effective in ways in AAA that don't work in the majors. Just as a Brandon Larson can destroy AAA by picking on pitchers who aren't MLB caliber, wild power pitchers can tear apart AAA by picking on less disciplined and talented AAA hitters.

Chapman might very well be successful in the majors today. But he will undoubtedly be more likely to succeed if he improves his control. There are lots of guys who can throw 98 mph gas but who can't make it as major leaguers. Everyone in this thread loves Chapman's talent and potential. But that doesn't make him ready. Nor does the results of striking out a lot minor leaguers whose chase that 98 mph gas out of the zone.

RS17TIMES
05-02-2010, 09:25 PM
I don't think anybody thinks you have to have Greg Maddux control to be successful in the majors. But AAA results do not automatically lead to MLB results. Pitchers can be effective in ways in AAA that don't work in the majors. Just as a Brandon Larson can destroy AAA by picking on pitchers who aren't MLB caliber, wild power pitchers can tear apart AAA by picking on less disciplined and talented AAA hitters.

Chapman might very well be successful in the majors today. But he will undoubtedly be more likely to succeed if he improves his control. There are lots of guys who can throw 98 mph gas but who can't make it as major leaguers. Everyone in this thread loves Chapman's talent and potential. But that doesn't make him ready. Nor does the results of striking out a lot minor leaguers whose chase that 98 mph gas out of the zone.

I don't disagree at all. He does need to improve. All I'm saying is that sometimes it seems like people want him to have pinpoint accuracy on every pitch when I believe he's talented enough that he doesn't need to be that perfect.

GIDP
05-02-2010, 09:35 PM
I don't disagree at all. He does need to improve. All I'm saying is that sometimes it seems like people want him to have pinpoint accuracy on every pitch when I believe he's talented enough that he doesn't need to be that perfect.

I think a lot of the "seeming" is done in peoples mind when nothing really like that is being said. Happens all the time in every conversation.

chapman doesnt have to be pin point but being as wild as he has shown at times is somethin that needs to be fixed. Could he pitch and get people out like that? Sure but he wouldnt be a good starter doing it.

OnBaseMachine
05-02-2010, 09:36 PM
FWIW, Stephen Strasburg had an underwhelming start today:

4.2 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 4 K

That was his second start against Altoona this season. They should put him in the bullpen because clearly he can't get hitters out the second time through the league. ;)

RedsManRick
05-02-2010, 09:55 PM
I don't disagree at all. He does need to improve. All I'm saying is that sometimes it seems like people want him to have pinpoint accuracy on every pitch when I believe he's talented enough that he doesn't need to be that perfect.

Fair enough -- but I'm not sure anybody is suggesting what you "seem" to be reading.

fearofpopvol1
05-03-2010, 02:23 AM
FWIW, Stephen Strasburg had an underwhelming start today:

4.2 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 4 K

That was his second start against Altoona this season. They should put him in the bullpen because clearly he can't get hitters out the second time through the league. ;)

I love how ESPN only reports Strasburg's games when he pitches well.

REDblooded
05-03-2010, 06:27 AM
Trick question... If Chapman faced a major league line-up with the advanced plate discipline (in comparison to AAA clubs) like the Reds... Do you think he could still strike out 6+ and walk away with a win? Some of you are overrating the great hitting of major leaguers...

GIDP
05-03-2010, 10:00 AM
Trick question... If Chapman faced a major league line-up with the advanced plate discipline (in comparison to AAA clubs) like the Reds... Do you think he could still strike out 6+ and walk away with a win? Some of you are overrating the great hitting of major leaguers...

No I dont think he would. I think he could but I dont think he would do it often. I think he would struggle to get through 5 unless he was on his game. Could he work as a reliever? Sure Carlos Marmol gets it done for the most part so Chapman could.

Scrap Irony
05-03-2010, 12:40 PM
Chapman, IMO, has enough stuff right now to be league average or better, depending on how umpires react to his stuff. (Mike Leake has consistently been squeezed so far, for example, more than most rookie pitchers I've seen.) Major league hitters haven't seen LH stuff like his since... well, for a long time anyway. That puts him way ahead of the curve, to butcher a cliche.

He won't pitch into the sixth consistently if he does go north, but, hey, it's not like many Red pitchers are doing that now anyway.

BLEEDS
05-03-2010, 03:21 PM
call me crazy but i'd still like to see chapman eased in via the bullpen. Let him work on things under the tutelage of our best pitching coach without the pressure and pitch counts that come as a starter.

crazy!

Peace

-bleeds

Sea Ray
05-03-2010, 04:04 PM
The way this bullpen's been going I do expect to see Chapman called up this year and help out the pen

TRF
05-03-2010, 04:04 PM
Call me crazy but I'd still like to see Chapman eased in via the bullpen. Let him work on things under the tutelage of our best pitching coach without the pressure and pitch counts that come as a starter.

I thought Mario Soto was in the D.R.

Scrap Irony
05-04-2010, 10:26 AM
Soto is in AAA for another week or two working with the team.