I’ve been looking at a pitcher’s “stuff” using pitchf/x data recently, and here’s how I would rank the top five starters of 2009 by stuff:
Kershaw might be a step above the field.
Rodriguez in 75 pitches threw 90% fastballs averaging 99 MPH.
Now, if you’ll allow me, I have a couple of questions for you, the reader.
First, do you think that a left-handed pitcher who throws 94 has better stuff than a right-handed pitcher who throws 94?
Also, some pitches are devastating against same-handed batters, but useless against opposite-handed batters. Should the sweeping slider be labeled a *nasty* pitch against same-handed batters and a mediocre pitch against opposite-handed batters? Or should it be regarded as a decent pitch on average, since it has the same characteristics no matter against whom it’s thrown.