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Thread: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

  1. #16
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    1 foot = .000189393939 miles
    60.5 feet = .011458 miles

    90 miles/hour
    =1.5 miles/minute
    =.025 miles/second
    =.45832 seconds from mound to home(actually shorter since the pitcher releases the ball more like 58 or 59 feet.)

    95 miles/hour
    =1.583333 miles/minute
    =.026389 miles/second
    =.434198 seconds from mound to home
    (actually shorter since the pitcher releases the ball more like 58 or 59 feet.)


    I think location and movement do more to fool a hitter than .025 seconds.

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  3. #17
    Resident PED Expert nemesis's Avatar
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier Red View Post
    1 foot = .000189393939 miles
    60.5 feet = .011458 miles

    90 miles/hour
    =1.5 miles/minute
    =.025 miles/second
    =.45832 seconds from mound to home(actually shorter since the pitcher releases the ball more like 58 or 59 feet.)

    95 miles/hour
    =1.583333 miles/minute
    =.026389 miles/second
    =.434198 seconds from mound to home
    (actually shorter since the pitcher releases the ball more like 58 or 59 feet.)


    I think location and movement do more to fool a hitter than .025 seconds.
    Since I have a mathmatics background I think I appreciate this post more than others. TOP NOTCH.

  4. #18
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by nemesis View Post
    Since I have a mathmatics background I think I appreciate this post more than others. TOP NOTCH.
    Well then I hope I was right

  5. #19
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier Red View Post
    1 foot = .000189393939 miles
    60.5 feet = .011458 miles

    90 miles/hour
    =1.5 miles/minute
    =.025 miles/second
    =.45832 seconds from mound to home(actually shorter since the pitcher releases the ball more like 58 or 59 feet.)

    95 miles/hour
    =1.583333 miles/minute
    =.026389 miles/second
    =.434198 seconds from mound to home
    (actually shorter since the pitcher releases the ball more like 58 or 59 feet.)


    I think location and movement do more to fool a hitter than .025 seconds.
    Your math would make sense without gravity or spin.... but those things exist.

    Here is the start speed/end speed for several fastballs thrown this year by player X (doesn't matter who it is, its like it for everyone). Data is from the Pitch F/X cameras.

    Code:
    96.8	88.2
    96.8	86.6
    96.7	86.2
    96.5	86.5
    96.3	86.9
    96.2	86.8
    95.7	87.2
    Pitches don't decelerate at the same rate just because they start at the same speed. Spin makes a solid difference.

  6. #20
    Member kpresidente's Avatar
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Because they want to hope that other soft tossers can become great? Heck, even in his prime Maddux could hit 95 when he wanted to. He just worked 90-92 because it helped him get that extra movement.
    That betrays the point. It doesn't matter what you can throw, what matters is what you do throw. If a guy maxes out at 92, but throws 90-92 consistently with good command and movement, is he less of a prospect just because he can't dial it up?

  7. #21
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    If you throw hard, you can always take something off it in the future to add movement. If you don't throw hard, you don't throw hard.

    Me? I'd rather have people who throw hard that CAN take something off it when needed or CAN dial it up in when needed. I like options.
    Bronson Arroyo far from Justin Verlander on the radar gun will hit 85 with his fastball to change things up.
    Quote Originally Posted by moewan View Post
    Barmaid to patron "Sir you are slurring, I am going to have to cut you off"

    Patron to barmaid "I'm not slurring, I'm speaking in cursive"


  8. #22
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by kpresidente View Post
    That betrays the point. It doesn't matter what you can throw, what matters is what you do throw. If a guy maxes out at 92, but throws 90-92 consistently with good command and movement, is he less of a prospect just because he can't dial it up?
    From my experience, yes.

  9. #23
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Slyder View Post
    Bronson Arroyo far from Justin Verlander on the radar gun will hit 85 with his fastball to change things up.
    I am not sure how reliably they were measured, but Arroyo has hit 90 a few times in recent games. Combine that with off speed, dipsy doodle breaking balls in the high 60's, a high leg kick that masks his pitches well, and an umpire that gives the pitcher the corners and he can be pretty effective....and fun to watch.

    Regarding Travis Wood, the consensus seems to be that he is getting people out with a change up and enough speed to set it up nicely. He has a low BB rate like Maloney, but unlike Maloney, Wood's HR rate is low. That bodes well for him. How well pitchers will fair against ML hitters who are able to lay off marginal pitches is always in question. My hunch is that Wood will do fine. I hope we get a chance to find out next spring.

    I wonder how hard Whitey Ford threw.

  10. #24
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by kpresidente View Post
    That betrays the point. It doesn't matter what you can throw, what matters is what you do throw. If a guy maxes out at 92, but throws 90-92 consistently with good command and movement, is he less of a prospect just because he can't dial it up?
    All other pitches being equal? Absolutely it makes them less of a prospect. Velocity just makes it harder to hit. Now of course a straight 94 MPH fastball isn't likely as good as a 90 MPH fastball with good movement, but it might be too. It really just all depends. However if I can have a guy who is exactly the same except one guy tops out at 92 and the other at 95, the guy that throws 95 is better every time.

  11. #25
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    All other pitches being equal? Absolutely it makes them less of a prospect. Velocity just makes it harder to hit. Now of course a straight 94 MPH fastball isn't likely as good as a 90 MPH fastball with good movement, but it might be too. It really just all depends. However if I can have a guy who is exactly the same except one guy tops out at 92 and the other at 95, the guy that throws 95 is better every time.
    If we assume the 95 MPH fastball has "life" then sure. If it's straight as an arrow, I'll take the guy that can work within his limits.

    Problem is, when you hear about a guy throwing 95, everyone tends to rate that player higher without considering whether that velocity has any movement to it. A straight 95-MPH fastball is actually much more hittable than at 90-92 with life. I can speak from experience as I faced some guys that could dial it up, but it was a straight fastball and very easy... or should I say easier, to hit.

    It's about perception, admittedly. But take the draft for example. Everyone hears this guy throws this speed and this guy throws that speed. Automatically on this board, most favor the guy that throws harder if they're similar rated prospects. But very rarely is the movement of said harder fastball critiqued in the discussion. I'll take a 95 heater with life over a 92 with life any day of the week. But if it's not got a whole lot of movement, I'll take the loss in velocity for more movement.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

  12. #26
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    All other pitches being equal? Absolutely it makes them less of a prospect. Velocity just makes it harder to hit. Now of course a straight 94 MPH fastball isn't likely as good as a 90 MPH fastball with good movement, but it might be too. It really just all depends. However if I can have a guy who is exactly the same except one guy tops out at 92 and the other at 95, the guy that throws 95 is better every time.
    Well of course it makes him worse. I should have said significantly worse. I guess my issue here that velocity seems to be the first thing everybody looks for in a prospect and I don't think that should be the case. It's sexier and easy to demonstrate. But command, movement and guile are more important, I say. There are few soft-tossers, as you put it, who've had long productive careers, but I can't think of anybody (starters) who lived exclusively on a fast, flat fastball. You've got to have decent control and you've got to have an assortment of quality pitches.

  13. #27
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by kpresidente View Post
    Well of course it makes him worse. I should have said significantly worse. I guess my issue here that velocity seems to be the first thing everybody looks for in a prospect and I don't think that should be the case. It's sexier and easy to demonstrate. But command, movement and guile are more important, I say. There are few soft-tossers, as you put it, who've had long productive careers, but I can't think of anybody (starters) who lived exclusively on a fast, flat fastball. You've got to have decent control and you've got to have an assortment of quality pitches.
    With prospects though, its all about learning and teaching. Scouts and coaches are of the belief you can teach things. You can't teach 95 MPH. A guy either has that kind of arm or he doesn't. You can improve control and movement for the most part. You can't take a guy and just add 3-4 MPH on his fastball. Thats why with prospects its the first thing asked about.... you can hopefully teach and improve the other stuff.

  14. #28
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    With prospects though, its all about learning and teaching. Scouts and coaches are of the belief you can teach things. You can't teach 95 MPH. A guy either has that kind of arm or he doesn't. You can improve control and movement for the most part. You can't take a guy and just add 3-4 MPH on his fastball. Thats why with prospects its the first thing asked about.... you can hopefully teach and improve the other stuff.
    I agree with this 100%.

    One footnote, though.

    A lot of times you'll see coaches wind up having a player grip the ball with a little less or a little more pressure, or slide a finger over off a seam a bit more, to slide a finger to the side, or even remove a finger completely... ironically enough, these things are all done to create more movement. What's fascinating is that 95 percent of the time, this often leads to slightly less velocity. To my knowledge, perhaps the splitter is about the only special fastball you can throw at similar speed, but it requires a larger grip to perform without doing any damage to your hand.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

  15. #29
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    I've really enjoyed the conversation the original post has spawned. One thing folks haven't touched on is health.

    I'm under the impression that adding a few extra miles to a fastball also incurs that much more pressure on the arm (i.e. injury risk if mechanics do slip ever so much). I guess my questions are
    a) is this true?
    b) if it is true, then could we also say that "softer tossers" (whether by choice like Maddux or by nature like so many others) have more of a chance to be durable?
    "Iíll kind of have a foot on the back of my own butt. Thatís just how I do things.Ē -- Bryan Price, 10/22/2013

  16. #30
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    Re: Is Wood's lack of velocity a good thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brutus the Pimp View Post
    It's about perception, admittedly. But take the draft for example. Everyone hears this guy throws this speed and this guy throws that speed. Automatically on this board, most favor the guy that throws harder if they're similar rated prospects. But very rarely is the movement of said harder fastball critiqued in the discussion. I'll take a 95 heater with life over a 92 with life any day of the week. But if it's not got a whole lot of movement, I'll take the loss in velocity for more movement.
    I think much of this can be attributed to the fact that velocity is completely objective and can easily be quantified whereas command and control are far more subjective.

    In order to determine velocity all you need is a radar gun, movement and command are far more difficult to quantify. Pitch FX data can certainly give a good idea about the movement on a pitch but it's rare to have that sort of information available for evaluating minor leaguers, let alone high school or college prospects. Similarly while we can infer a bit about a pitcher's control from peripheral stats like BB/9, it's impossible to quantify how often a pitcher is able to hit his target within the strike zone.


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