Royal Rumblings

Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

Random thoughts on the Royals and baseball.

Ervin Santana is pitching great, but ...

Two red flags stick out.

1. His slider usage leads the league among starters (43%). It will be interesting to see if he can keep getting away with only 2 pitches as a starter.

2. His in game speed is all over the place:

His last start

Ervin1_medium

Two starts ago

Ervin2_medium

Almost 5 mph swings during the game. Love the productions, hate the red flags.

Catcher Framing

Here is a comparison between the called strike zone for the Royals and Rays. Small differences over the course of a season can be huge.

2012

Zone2012_medium

2013

Zone2013_medium

The difference in 2012 was obvious, but in 2013, the difference is not as pronounced if at all.

Struggling Pitchers Take Longer to Pitch

Here are the Royals staff with the % of pitches in the strike zone and time they take between pitches

Name Pitches in Strike Zone Time Between Pitches
Bruce Chen 58.2% 17.4
Juan Gutierrez 50.0% 18.8
Jeremy Guthrie 54.4% 19.6
Ervin Santana 52.7% 20.9
Tim Collins 54.9% 21.1
Aaron Crow 45.1% 21.4
Luke Hochevar 37.5% 22.1
James Shields 49.2% 22.2
Kelvin Herrera 49.0% 22.7
Luis Mendoza 39.2% 22.8
Wade Davis 49.1% 23.5
Greg Holland 36.6% 25.1

Zone_pace_medium

Pitchers who are confident they can take the ball and throw it for strikes will. Those who are struggling out on the mound, will take as long as possible until they throw their next pitch.

Team batting is at some extremes

The bad (AL only)

  • Least number of home runs
  • 2nd least number of walks
  • 2nd most grounded into double plays

The good (AL only)

  • 2nd most nubmer of triples
  • 2nd least number of strike outs.
  • 2nd in doubles
  • 3rd in AVG

All of the first base speeds I have logged:

  • Getz (3.22): 4.0 secs
  • Cain (4/15): 4.15 secs
  • Hosmer (4/9): 4.25 secs
  • Francoeur (4/9): 4.4 secs

Few videos:

And everyone thought Youkilis had a weird stance

If only true

And for a "42" primer, feel free to watch all of "Soul of the Game" for free at YouTube.

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