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Brutus
06-07-2011, 12:54 AM
There was a thread on him, though it's kind of gotten sidetracked (to which I take some share in the blame for and I apologize). But I wanted to make the point I was making about Mike Leake in that thread and expand on it here.

Personally, I think Mike Leake's strikeout rates are not what should define him as a pitcher. I truly believe he's a pitcher and not a thrower. Why do I think that?

His strikeouts are low, but he's among the major league leaders in swinging strike percentage. His walks are low but his strike/pitch ratio is somewhat low. He doesn't give up a ton of flyballs but gets a lot of infield flyballs.

What does this all mean? I truly believe it's an early indication that Mike Leake knows the point of purpose pitches and uses everything in his arsenal. Setup pitches. Waste pitches. Changing eye levels. Hitting (or missing) corners. I think he does so not just with a goal of getting each individual batter out, but to minimize damage in every inning.

I think some people look at his low(er) strikeout totals and see more balls in play (and consequently more hits) and then surmise that when he throws yet another quality start, it must be a product of luck or defense (or both). On the contrary, I think it's a testament to a guy that will go after a hitter early in the inning, and then reel it back and pitch in ways to get out of an inning once he gets into trouble (rather than risking a big inning by getting gutsy and challenging hitters too much).

One thing forgotten about Leake is that he's tailor-made for GABP. He induces a fair amount of groundballs, he's got the potential to be pitch-efficient with time and doesn't walk many guys. Whether he's ace material goes beyond the scope of my post, and might not be that important in the grand scheme of things.

The thing that often jumps out at people is Leake's lack of strikeouts. It's said to mean he lacks great stuff.

This year he's striking out just under 7.0 per nine innings. That places him behind Edinson Volquez (9.4) and in similar company to the rest of the Reds' quasi-starters: Sam Lecure (7.9), Homer Bailey (6.6), Travis Wood (6.6), Bronson Arroyo (5.8), Johnny Cueto (5.2).

But at closer inspection, I really think Leake's stuff is legitimized by his swinging strike %, which in my personal estimation, is the best indicator of someone's qualitative stuff. After all, how often someone swings and misses at your pitches (i.e. missing bats) is generally thought to be the best gauge of a pitcher's ability.

Behold...

Volquez (10.6%)
Leake (8.7%)
Bailey (8.3%)
Wood (7.0%)
Cueto (6.9%)
Arroyo (6.8%)
Lecure (5.9%)

That Leake is second best among the seven semi-starters right now should be somewhat impressive on its' face. But here's what really says something to me right now: how he compares to some of the better pitchers in baseball that are in his neighborhood...

David Price (9.2%)
Matt Cain (9.2%)
Tommy Hanson (9.2%)
Josh Beckett (9.0%)
Edwin Jackson (8.9%)
Felix Hernandez (8.9%)
Jered Weaver (8.8%)
Max Scherzer (8.8%)
Madison Bumgarner (8.7%)
A.J. Burnett (8.7%)
Josh Johnson (8.5%)
Jon Lester (8.4%)
John Danks (8.2%)
Ian Kennedy (8.2%)
Ervin Santana (8.2%)
Erik Bedard (8.1%)

I just wonder, how many of these names would one have rated Leake's stuff comparable to without seeing this list? Now let me emphasize, Leake is still somewhat of an unknown what he'll do going forward, but his numbers have improved across the board this year. And as they say for Jay Bruce... he's 23!

But there are other interesting things that are encouraging.

His walks per nine are under 3.0, despite throwing just 61% strikes. That again gets to the heart of my belief about Leake -- that he's not afraid to get ahead, then pitch around guys until he is able to get them to miss (or hit weakly) pitches he wants them to go after. If it means an 0-2 count becoming 2-2, he's willing to do that.

While some of his peripherals are not otherworldly individually (his walk rate, GB/FB ratio, etc.), collectively they are impressive. His BB/9 puts him in decent company with such names as Randy Wolf, Justin Masterson, Josh Johnson, Tommy Hanson, Madison Bumgarner, Livan Hernandez, R.A. Dickey, Matt Cain, Carlos Zambrano -- guys that are known to have good control. For me, though, it's not just that he's not walking a lot of guys, but that hitters aren't doing a lot of damage against him in the field of play.

That he's got a solid, though unspectacular 1.4 GB/FB rate is one thing... but he's also got a 12.8% IFFB rate. That means about 13 of every 100 balls put in play are essentially automatic outs. The encouraging thing is that is deemed a repeatable skill by most studies. It's especially telling if he continues that, because it suggests, despite being more of a groundball pitcher, that he's able to induce weak contact. Getting infield flies with any regularity as a groundball pitcher should be some anecdotal evidence of that ability. As it stands, that IFFB% is just outside the top 25 pitchers in baseball.

As far as being a groundball pitcher, this is a byproduct, however, of that. Groundballs tend to go for hits more often than do flyballs. This can adversely bias observers, IMHO, against pitchers because it means they'll give up more hits absent high strikeout numbers. But while Leake's hits will be inflated because of tending to give up more groundballs, it also means far fewer home runs and even to some extent, fewer doubles/triples.

I honestly think Leake is pitching very well and has the ability to become a great pitcher going forward. I think he's really just scratching the surface of how to be an effective big league pitcher, and considering he's thrown only 194 professional innings, what he's doing right now should be more noteworthy than it is. Here's a guy literally learning how to pitch professionally while on the job of a reigning division champ, and he's doing so as being the club's most consistent and most effective pitcher. Let that sink in, then think back to what I just noted: 194 professional innings.

Does Mike Leake have a dominant fastball? A wicked curve? Devastating slider? Fool-me-once change? No on all accounts. But I think he has great movement and good command on all or most of his pitches, and he knows how to use that to his advantage effectively. If he ever gains pinpoint accuracy of his pitches like a certain Hall-of-Famer not to be named once gained after a few years as a professional, the sky is the limit for him. Until then, I will continue to believe he's being tremendously underrated.

Is he an ace? Again, not really the point I want to make though not yet. But whether he is or isn't, I still maintain this is a true pitcher -- something the Reds' organization has lacked in many years.

The Voice of IH
06-07-2011, 12:58 AM
great post, someone please merge. ;)

lollipopcurve
06-07-2011, 09:11 AM
Best post ever on Leake.

OesterPoster
06-07-2011, 09:40 AM
I don't know how to verify this, or even measure it...but Brantley did make a point last night about how Leake tends to figure out how to induce a ground ball when he has a guy on 1st base. He did it often last night, and it didn't result in a DP every time...but still, he has a unique ability to get a ground ball when guys are on base.

mattfeet
06-07-2011, 10:10 AM
Outstanding post, thanks for sharing all of that! :thumbup:

-Matt

Brutus
06-07-2011, 10:28 AM
I don't know how to verify this, or even measure it...but Brantley did make a point last night about how Leake tends to figure out how to induce a ground ball when he has a guy on 1st base. He did it often last night, and it didn't result in a DP every time...but still, he has a unique ability to get a ground ball when guys are on base.

My hunch is that it's simple pitch selection. I believe he probably throws certain pitches in certain situations. I honestly think he'll say, "OK runner on first and one out, I need to try to induce a grounder," whereas with two outs, two strikes and no one on, he might challenge the hitter to get a strikeout.

Where we as fans automatically assume every pitcher is trying for a strikeout on every at-bat, I think Leake lives by the philosophy that you have a defense behind you for a reason, and if you pitch to contact (which is taboo to say these days) in certain situations, you'll have a 68-72% of getting an out. If you can induce a pop-up on the infield, the odds became virtually a slam-dunk.

This is not to say I think Leake hates strikeouts. But I think he simply changes his approach based on how many outs, how many are on base, etc. I think he pitches with the goal of not just getting one guy out, but getting guys in the rest of the inning out. It's why, I think, he's so good at limiting scoring damage in innings and generally avoids the big onslaught.

lollipopcurve
06-07-2011, 10:32 AM
This is not to say I think Leake hates strikeouts. But I think he simply changes his approach based on how many outs, how many are on base, etc.

Most big league pitchers try to think this way. Some can think it through and execute it better than others. Having a catcher who understands situations and hitters (and the pitcher) helps a lot.

Brutus
06-07-2011, 10:39 AM
Most big league pitchers try to think this way. Some can think it through and execute it better than others. Having a catcher who understands situations and hitters (and the pitcher) helps a lot.

Good point. But I do think there's a perception whether consciously or otherwise that exists where every pitcher is trying to strike every guy out, and if he doesn't, thereby it's because he couldn't.

lollipopcurve
06-07-2011, 10:41 AM
I do think there's a perception whether consciously or otherwise that exists where every pitcher is trying to strike every guy out, and if he doesn't, thereby it's because he couldn't.

Agree 100%.

Johnny Footstool
06-07-2011, 10:51 AM
Good point. But I do think there's a perception whether consciously or otherwise that exists where every pitcher is trying to strike every guy out, and if he doesn't, thereby it's because he couldn't.

I think it's generally accepted that pitchers who throw the nastiest pitches tend to strike out the most batters.

It's also pretty clear that the best pitchers tend to have higher strikeout rates.

I think Leake's strikeout rates will improve over the next couple of years, much like Jered Weaver's did.

_Sir_Charles_
06-07-2011, 11:18 AM
Brutus....:clap:

Well thought out and articulated...as usual.

wally post
06-07-2011, 11:28 AM
This is an incredible post - clearly one of the best posts I've ever read. Thanks Brutus!

Homer Bailey
06-07-2011, 11:56 AM
That he's got a solid, though unspectacular 1.4 GB/FB rate is one thing... but he's also got a 12.8% IFFB rate. That means about 13 of every 100 balls put in play are essentially automatic outs. The encouraging thing is that is deemed a repeatable skill by most studies. It's especially telling if he continues that, because it suggests, despite being more of a groundball pitcher, that he's able to induce weak contact. Getting infield flies with any regularity as a groundball pitcher should be some anecdotal evidence of that ability. As it stands, that IFFB% is just outside the top 25 pitchers in baseball.



There is a lot I can say about this post, which was well stated and I appreciate the effort. I don't have the time or energy to debate a lot of it, but you are misinterpreting IFFB rate. IFFB rate is IFFB/FB, not IFFB/Batted Ball. So his 12.5% IFBB rate really means that .125*.320 (his FB rate), meaning he's only getting infield fly balls on 4% of his batted balls, and not 12.8%.

Brutus
06-07-2011, 12:00 PM
There is a lot I can say about this post, which was well stated and I appreciate the effort. I don't have the time or energy to debate a lot of it, but you are misinterpreting IFFB rate. IFFB rate is IFFB/FB, not IFFB/Batted Ball. So his 12.5% IFBB rate really means that .125*.320 (his FB rate), meaning he's only getting infield fly balls on 4% of his batted balls, and not 12.8%.

Well, you're correct about that. It wasn't a misinterpretation as much as it was late and apparently kind of went to sleep with the information overload there when I was typing that. But yes, it its a percentage of fly balls and not batted balls, and I'm not sure why I phrased it like I did.

HokieRed
06-07-2011, 12:09 PM
Good point. But I do think there's a perception whether consciously or otherwise that exists where every pitcher is trying to strike every guy out, and if he doesn't, thereby it's because he couldn't.

I don't doubt there may be this perception but I can't imagine anybody holds it who's ever played any baseball at all. Effective pitchers continually pitch to situations and for many reasons--one of them being it saves their arms. Getting a hitter to ground out in two pitches beats the devil out of throwing five, six, maybe ten pitches trying to get a K. Trying to get a K out of every hitter is sheer madness.

OesterPoster
06-07-2011, 12:21 PM
Trying to get a K out of every hitter is sheer madness.

I'd like to introduce you to Edinson Volquez. :)

IslandRed
06-07-2011, 12:24 PM
I don't doubt there may be this perception but I can't imagine anybody holds it who's ever played any baseball at all. Effective pitchers continually pitch to situations and for many reasons--one of them being it saves their arms. Getting a hitter to ground out in two pitches beats the devil out of throwing five, six, maybe ten pitches trying to get a K. Trying to get a K out of every hitter is sheer madness.

Yep. "Stop trying to strike everyone out" is the pitcher equivalent of "stop trying to hit a home run every time up." Those pieces of advice are not given because strikeouts and home runs are bad things, it's because guys who focus too much on outcome instead of process get their approach to the task screwed up.

Johnny Footstool
06-07-2011, 01:30 PM
Yep. "Stop trying to strike everyone out" is the pitcher equivalent of "stop trying to hit a home run every time up." Those pieces of advice are not given because strikeouts and home runs are bad things, it's because guys who focus too much on outcome instead of process get their approach to the task screwed up.

Exactly. Focus on making quality pitches in good locations (not "pitch to contact"). The strikeouts will come.

bucksfan2
06-07-2011, 01:41 PM
I don't doubt there may be this perception but I can't imagine anybody holds it who's ever played any baseball at all. Effective pitchers continually pitch to situations and for many reasons--one of them being it saves their arms. Getting a hitter to ground out in two pitches beats the devil out of throwing five, six, maybe ten pitches trying to get a K. Trying to get a K out of every hitter is sheer madness.

I thought it was Mike Leake who tries to throw around12-15 pitches per inning. He fully knows that the key to success isn't to strike every better out but get out of the inning with as few pitches thrown. When he is on he is able to control the strike zone and get hitters putting pitchers pitches in play.

Leake is going to give up his fair share of hits. But when you watch him pitch, especially when he has his good stuff, he has the ability to strike out a batter when he needs to. There are certain times in a game when he appears to amp up his game to get a key K. IMO going into this season he was a vastly under-appreciated pitcher.

HokieRed
06-07-2011, 01:44 PM
I thought it was Mike Leake who tries to throw around12-15 pitches per inning. He fully knows that the key to success isn't to strike every better out but get out of the inning with as few pitches thrown. When he is on he is able to control the strike zone and get hitters putting pitchers pitches in play.

Leake is going to give up his fair share of hits. But when you watch him pitch, especially when he has his good stuff, he has the ability to strike out a batter when he needs to. There are certain times in a game when he appears to amp up his game to get a key K. IMO going into this season he was a vastly under-appreciated pitcher.

I agree with you. One thing I like about Leake is his pitching intelligence.

jojo
06-07-2011, 05:59 PM
Pitch F/X data fails to support an assertion that Leake attempts to induce timely ground balls situationally or that he tries to induce contact on 2 strike counts:

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showpost.php?p=2403501&postcount=168

Brutus
06-07-2011, 06:06 PM
Pitch F/X data fails to support an assertion that Leake attempts to induce timely ground balls situationally or that he tries to induce contact on 2 strike counts:

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showpost.php?p=2403501&postcount=168

There are a lot of conclusions being drawn there, but there are several issues to account for before drawing such conclusions.

First, you have to accept that Leake only has confidence in his sinker to achieve the desired result he's looking for. That's a giant leap as we can't know what pitches he's personally most comfortable with. It stands to reason, and even goes without saying, that the sinker would be the pitch expected to induce the most grounders. Anyone that's ever thrown a baseball would know that, so that part isn't something I'd disagree with. But not every pitcher has the same comfort level with their pitches. It's possible Leake still hasn't developed it fully and doesn't throw it as often as he could/should because he's not fully comfortable with it. I'm not offering that as the only possibility, but rather as one of probably dozens of alternative theories. That is simply to say we do not know.

Second, it is based on the assumption that he's only trying to get a groundball with two strikes. Logic follows that if he's in a situation where he would want to induce a groundball, he wouldn't only do it with two strikes. Why would he? If he knows he's not going to try for a strikeout, wouldn't it be more pitch-efficient to do that in earlier counts? I don't see why he would wait until two strikes to induce a grounder. That's certainly not the position I was taking, though I realized after re-reading my original post I see how the confusion would have set in. Quite the opposite... that I think he's content with some hitters to get first, second-pitch contact.

Third, the cutter is a great pitch to get a weak infield fly. To some hitters, he might have more faith in that result or that pitch than his sinker.

There's really nothing in that breakdown, as thorough as it was, that proves or disproves the position. I appreciate the effort and the information, but I don't see anything that gets us to a definitive conclusion.

The biggest thing is that the premise of the post is contrary to what I've asserted, or intended to assert at very least. Since I gave the indication that I think Leake tries to get groundballs with two strikes, I apologize, but that absolutely was not what I meant nor was it a count that we'd expect him to do so. But that's most definitely not my position. I don't think a guy would try to get two strikes on a batter than aim for a grounder. I think he'd either go into the at-bat hoping to induce contact or try to strike a guy out. If it's the former rather than the latter, I doubt he'd wait until two strikes to throw a pitch that is best suited for that outcome.

lollipopcurve
06-08-2011, 09:49 AM
http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/pitching/_/league/nl/sort/QSPct/type/expanded

Quality start % stats so far in 2011.

For his career, Leake is at 67% (20 for 30). This is a rock solid number, and pretty phenomenal for a guy who rarely gets up over 90-91 coming straight to the majors.

Those who never look beyond standard FIP type measurements miss this guy. By a lot.

edabbs44
06-08-2011, 09:52 AM
http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/pitching/_/league/nl/sort/QSPct/type/expanded

Quality start % stats so far in 2011.

For his career, Leake is at 67% (20 for 30). This is a rock solid number, and pretty phenomenal for a guy who rarely gets up over 90-91 coming straight to the majors.

Those who never look beyond standard FIP type measurements miss this guy. By a lot.

The number is especially telling when you have a couple of really bad games dragging down other stats.

jojo
06-08-2011, 10:12 AM
http://espn.go.com/mlb/stats/pitching/_/league/nl/sort/QSPct/type/expanded

Quality start % stats so far in 2011.

For his career, Leake is at 67% (20 for 30). This is a rock solid number, and pretty phenomenal for a guy who rarely gets up over 90-91 coming straight to the majors.

Those who never look beyond standard FIP type measurements miss this guy. By a lot.

Is there really a large group of people who never look beyond FIP? I'm not sure I even know someone who would fit that label.

757690
06-08-2011, 10:22 AM
FIP actually says nice things about Mike Leake this year.

The Voice of IH
06-08-2011, 01:15 PM
Is there really a large group of people who never look beyond FIP? I'm not sure I even know someone who would fit that label.

Hi.

_Sir_Charles_
06-08-2011, 03:22 PM
I'm a pretty big guy, but I don't think I've ever been confused for a large group of people. :O)

But I don't look at FIP...ever. I don't have anything against it, but I do have something against websites that are HORRIBLE to navigate. Fangraphs & baseball-reference both fit into that category IMO. I'd imagine that people who've grown used to it don't see the problem, but somebody new to the site...yikes.

fearofpopvol1
04-28-2012, 12:15 AM
I know, I know. It's still early in the season, but another bad start or two, and he might be Louisville bound. Maybe Chapman will be in the rotation sooner than we thought? Especially with Hoover? There are plenty of options in Louisville that could be brought up (albeit not ones as good as Chapman but adequate at least).

Tom Servo
04-28-2012, 12:27 AM
Leake just doesn't seem to know how to keep an inning from getting out of hand.

The Operator
04-28-2012, 12:48 AM
Leake just doesn't seem to know how to keep an inning from getting out of hand.
The same problem everyone likes to say Bailey has, but without the ability to get a K in a critical situation.

I've just never been one to buy into the "that guy knows how to pitch!" hype about some pitchers. Any good pitcher is going to know how to pitch, but when that is the most you can say for someone, to me that says "that guy has mediocre stuff."

757690
04-28-2012, 04:11 AM
The same problem everyone likes to say Bailey has, but without the ability to get a K in a critical situation.

I've just never been one to buy into the "that guy knows how to pitch!" hype about some pitchers. Any good pitcher is going to know how to pitch, but when that is the most you can say for someone, to me that says "that guy has mediocre stuff."

It's pretty clear that Leake is not one of those guys that "knows how to pitch," at least not yet.

I think he has the same type of stuff that pitchers who "know how to pitch" have, meaning lots of pitches, and lots of movement. However, we have to remember he pretty much skipped the minors and is basically learning to pitch on the job.

GAC
04-28-2012, 04:17 AM
It sure seemed like the Astro hitters were showing lots of plate patience last night, and sooner or later Leake was giving them something to hit..... and they did.

jojo
04-28-2012, 05:59 AM
FWIW, Leake's SwStr% has been below average every year he's been in the majors.

KittyDuran
04-28-2012, 09:11 AM
The same problem everyone likes to say Bailey has, but without the ability to get a K in a critical situation.

I've just never been one to buy into the "that guy knows how to pitch!" hype about some pitchers. Any good pitcher is going to know how to pitch, but when that is the most you can say for someone, to me that says "that guy has mediocre stuff."
You can say that for anyone on this years' staff with the exception of Cueto...

Maybe it's time to give Hannigan a chance with Leake this year. He was only with Mesoraco in one start (a win in September with Devin was called up). Hey it worked for Latos so far this year-1 win! (most of Leake's wins last year was with Hernandez)

RANDY IN INDY
04-28-2012, 09:23 AM
Pitchers like Leake can have command issues at times, particularly those who depend on a lot of movement. I think he'll work it out, even if it takes a trip to Louisville. Francis could make a couple of starts should they not want to out Chapman in the rotation. The insertion of a left-hander may not be the worst thing in the world for this staff.

lollipopcurve
04-28-2012, 09:26 AM
I think Leake has to pitch inside more -- move guys off the plate. And elevate his fastball on occasion -- work the horizontal plane, not just the vertical.

RANDY IN INDY
04-28-2012, 10:39 AM
I think Leake has to pitch inside more -- move guys off the plate. And elevate his fastball on occasion -- work the horizontal plane, not just the vertical.

Absolutely. Can't let the hitters get comfortable with his kind of stuff.

Roy Tucker
04-28-2012, 10:40 AM
You can say that for anyone on this years' staff with the exception of Cueto...

Maybe it's time to give Hannigan a chance with Leake this year. He was only with Mesoraco in one start (a win in September with Devin was called up). Hey it worked for Latos so far this year-1 win! (most of Leake's wins last year was with Hernandez)

Not to sidetrack the thread, but I thought Mesoraco wasn't working very well with Simon either. Mentioned it on the game thread.

dougdirt
04-28-2012, 12:32 PM
Leake's change up has been a big problem so far this season according to the pitch values on Fangraphs. It has been the second worst change up in baseball this season among starters.

I went and looked at all of his change ups at TexasLeaguers.com.

Lots of them have been higher than you would like and I imagine that is part of the issue. The velocity on them has been 80-85 MPH and the top end there is far too close to his fastball to be an effective pitch.

RANDY IN INDY
04-28-2012, 04:31 PM
Leake's change up has been a big problem so far this season according to the pitch values on Fangraphs. It has been the second worst change up in baseball this season among starters.

I went and looked at all of his change ups at TexasLeaguers.com.
http://pitchfx.texasleaguers.com/charts/gen/5021902012040120120427AAACHlocation.png

Lots of them have been higher than you would like and I imagine that is part of the issue. The velocity on them has been 80-85 MPH and the top end there is far too close to his fastball to be an effective pitch.

I agree about the change up, Doug. It is such a "feel" pitch and the weather sometimes makes it very difficult to throw. As it starts heating up, I bet he gets better with it.

My son and I were throwing a bullpen in the backyard on Thursday evening, and it was very cold and windy. He has a really good circle change that breaks down and away from right handed hitters and he could not get it down and the speed was nearly that of his fastball.

fearofpopvol1
05-11-2012, 08:57 PM
I know it's early in the season and all, but Homer Bailey > Mike Leake

mattfeet
05-11-2012, 09:06 PM
I know it's early in the season and all, but Homer Bailey > Mike Leake

Yea, so far it looks like the Top 5 are (based on current stats):

Cueto
Arroyo
Latos
Bailey
Leake

KronoRed
05-11-2012, 09:16 PM
I move this case be moved to Louisville.

forfreelin04
05-11-2012, 09:26 PM
I move this case be moved to Louisville.

Seconded

Tom Servo
05-11-2012, 11:09 PM
Seconded
Thirded.

Screwball
05-11-2012, 11:20 PM
Thirded.

Fourthded.

I've been to two games this year -- each one started by Leake, and in each we watched him get clubbed into a 6-0 hole before the sun had set (the good ol' boys behind us called him Mike Bleak). Even his outs are oftentimes a rocket that happens to find a glove.

He's killing the team right now. How long do you keep running him out there?

jojo
05-11-2012, 11:45 PM
Leake's change up has been a big problem so far this season according to the pitch values on Fangraphs. It has been the second worst change up in baseball this season among starters.

I went and looked at all of his change ups at TexasLeaguers.com.

Lots of them have been higher than you would like and I imagine that is part of the issue. The velocity on them has been 80-85 MPH and the top end there is far too close to his fastball to be an effective pitch.

Weather is probably not Leake's problem. He's only pitched in two games with temperatures below 60 degrees-his opener against the Cards (51 degrees) which was one of his best games and in Chicago (43 degrees) which was a bad outing. He's got rocked at 77 degrees (wash), 61 degrees (hou), and tonight @ 72 degrees. It's not cold, it's inconsistency.

My guess is the problem with his change up is a grip/wrist issue that won't be helped by changes in the weather. He's probably either not gripping consistently (i.e getting too much "fingertip") or he's getting some snap in his wrist...either issue would speed up is change and funky wrist action could also mess with sink.

Probably the wrist action best explains the f/x data you've described.

VR
05-12-2012, 01:24 AM
Is it time to move Chapman into his spot.....and rely on Leake/ Lecure for middle relief to limit his innings?

Tommyjohn25
05-12-2012, 10:21 AM
I've been going to Reds games for 30 years. Last night was probably the runner up for "least amount of fun I've had at the game".

traderumor
05-12-2012, 10:27 AM
Leake brings grim reminders, eh nightmares, of the "pitch to contact" era of bad Reds pitching. There is a "Leake" in the rotation.

cumberlandreds
05-12-2012, 10:59 AM
Fourthded.

I've been to two games this year -- each one started by Leake, and in each we watched him get clubbed into a 6-0 hole before the sun had set (the good ol' boys behind us called him Mike Bleak). Even his outs are oftentimes a rocket that happens to find a glove.

He's killing the team right now. How long do you keep running him out there?

DGullett35
05-12-2012, 10:59 AM
He should get sent to Louisville for a few starts. He was one of the few starters on this team I felt comfortable with going into 2012. Boy was I wrong. He is responsible for over 25% of the losses on this team. I say at least bring up Francis if your not going to put Aroldis in the rotation. I do agree that right now Leake is killing this team. Hes had one decent start and in that start he gave up 3 dingers. the guy can barely make it through 3 innings right now. This bottom of the rotation needs a boost. i wish Bray and/or Masset could come back soon and Aroldis could give the boost thats needed. We could really use him right now as our 4th starter.

jhu1321
05-12-2012, 05:26 PM
Leake did a stint in L'ville last year and when he came back up he was the ML we we expected. Time to give it a shot again and bring up Francis for a couple IMO.

_Sir_Charles_
05-12-2012, 07:00 PM
Baker, when asked Saturday whether Leake would make his next start, replied:
“We haven’t covered that yet. I’d like to think so. … As of right now, the answer is yes.”
Baker said a bigger ballpark in New York also might help Leake on Wednesday.
“We know he can pitch,” Baker said. “Hopefully we get him straightened out.”
From Fayl

membengal
05-13-2012, 07:30 AM
at least that's a workable plan going forward...find canyons for Leake to pitch in. When do they go to SD for his next start after the one in NY?

Vottomatic
05-13-2012, 08:37 AM
I'm shocked Leake is having trouble. I never expected him to be Latos or Cueto. But I did expect him to have an e.r.a. hovering around 4.00 and be a serviceable #5 pitcher. The Reds can't keep running him out there if it's going to be an automatic addition to the loss column. Especially with the starting rotations of the Nationals, Cardinals, and a few other teams. No room for error.