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Tony-OH

TT: Analysis of Mac Sceroler's major league debut

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Impressive analysis Tony.  For this year I would be happy if Sceroler stayed in the pen.   I'd be interested to read your analysis of Tyler Wells.   He seems like someone that could graduate to the rotation at some point.  But that is just  my eye test.

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3 minutes ago, wildcard said:

Impressive analysis Tony.  For this year I would be happy if Sceroler stayed in the pen.   I'd be interested to read your analysis of Tyler Wells.   He seems like someone that could graduate to the rotation at some point.  But that is just  my eye test.

Thanks. I'll try to take a look at Wells a bit later and post something.

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Tony, isn't the purpose of a curve to look like a strike until it isn't, forcing the batter to try to hit a pitch that appears like it's going to be in the zone but ends up out of it?  Asking for a friend named Jim Palmer.  🙂

 

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I'm half sorry I checked out after the Salami. (HALF sorry...) Ida liked to have seen Sceroler's gem debut.

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9 hours ago, Tony-OH said:

Mac Sceroler's debut was fascinating for several reasons and was certainly the highlight of an otherwise lackluster 7-0 loss to the Yankees. Let's take a look:

The crazy situation he was brought into by Hyde
I would love to know if a pitcher was ever brought into a tougher situation for his major league debut, especially for a Rule 5 pick rookie who has never pitched above A-ball. It's almost unfathomable that manage Brandon Hyde would even think about bringing in Sceroler with the bases loaded, one out, and Aaron Judge at the plate, but that's exactly what he did. 

Why Hyde didn't start off the 6th inning down 6-0 with Sceroler is a mystery in it's ownself, but once Paul Fry struggled, it's even stranger to decide that was the moment to give the rookie his major league debut. After falling behind 3-1 all on fastballs, Sceroler threw a 3-1, 94 MPH down and in fastball to Judge for a strike who then fouled off a 94 MPH fastball in the upper part of the zone on 3-2. Then, for some reason, perhaps thinking there is no way Sceroler throws him seven straight fastballs, Judge took strike three on a 94 MPH fastball right in the middle of the plate but low in the zone for strike three. 

https://www.mlb.com/video/mac-sceroler-called-strike-to-aaron-judge?q=GamePk %3D [634587] AND PitchSpeed %3D {{ 36%2C 105 }} Order By Timestamp DESC&cp=MIXED&p=2

Sceroler then got behind Aaron Hicks 1-0 and then got him to pop out to Ramon Urias on a down and in 93 MPH fastball, down the right field line to get out of the bases loaded jam. 

Whiff Rate
It's very rare to see a high Whiff rate at 100% on any pitch type with more than a few thrown, but Sceroler literally had a 100% Whiff rate on his nine off-speed pitches which means the nine times Yankees swung at anything off speed they missed. That includes seven split changes which was his most effective off-speed pitch.

High spin rates
You want to know why Sceroler was probably taken despite never pitching above A-Ball? Probably because of his high spin rate stuff.
His fastball averaged 2637 RPM despite averaging 92.5 MPH and topping at 94.4. According to Driveline baseball in 2017, the average MLB fastball was 92 MPH with a spin rate of 2200 RPM for a Bauer's Unit of 24. In 2016, the top Bauer's units for fastball with more than 100 pitches thrown was Andrew Bailey's 28.9. Sceroler's fastball came out to 28.5 Bauer's unit in his major league debut over 2.2 IP.  That would have been good for second best that year (it's the data found in the article).

Fastball: 2637 RPM avg (28.5 Bauer's units) https://baseballsavant.mlb.com/sporty-videos?playId=11b27cf4-9495-4c2a-a804-9ef357422281
Curveball: 3006 RPM  https://baseballsavant.mlb.com/sporty-videos?playId=be0e12de-ff12-4605-ac43-bd5a2e60ce24
Slider: 2709 RPM https://baseballsavant.mlb.com/sporty-videos?playId=8c60cecb-01c2-4510-9f82-a9d629086fd7 

That spinrate on his curveball enabled it to drop vertically 62.5 inches which is 5.8 inches of drop more than MLB avg. His slider has good spin rate, but is basically a hard curveball with very little horizontal movement and is about five MPHs faster with less break than his curveball. He may be better served long-term with a cutter than the slider.

Split-change
His split change was his best pitch by WHIF (7-7, 100%) but he threw 6 of 13 in the zone but did get batters to chase the pitch low two times out of the seven times below the strike zone. His split has the most horizontal movement of any of pitches getting 13.1 inches of arm side run which is 1.8 inches better than average and 16% better than major league average overall. It only has 1354 RPM average but enough active spin to get the arm-side run and thus the swing and misses.

https://www.mlb.com/video/mike-tauchman-strikes-out-swinging-AyLDDA?q=GamePk %3D [634587] AND PitchSpeed %3D {{ 36%2C 105 }} Order By Timestamp DESC&cp=MIXED&p=0

Command?
Despite the great numbers, the rub here is the command of his pitches was a bit below average, especially the curveball. While his curveball had good movement, he only threw two strikes out of eight with the pitch garnering one Whiff. Only 9 of his 23 fastballs were in or touching the strike zone and of the four sliders he threw, two were strikes with one in the heart of the zone.

Moving forward
It's hard to argue that his first appearance was anything other than outstanding. If he can't command the curveball batters will just ignore the pitch so he will need to be able to get that pitch in the zone more often. The split change got five swing a misses in the zone while his fastball got the only other swing and miss in the zone at the very top of the zone. At worse his fastball, split change could make him a pretty good reliever out of the pen but he'll need to command that curveball better or better place the occasional slider (maybe go to a cut fastball vs slider?) if he's going to move to the rotation one day. 
 

 

Thanks for this. Very illuminating.

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SSS of course, but any idea which guy has better potential?

Im happy with both and hope we keep both.

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2 hours ago, Philip said:

SSS of course, but any idea which guy has better potential?

Im happy with both and hope we keep both.

Judging by the statcast numbers I've seen so far, it's Scerloer and it's not close. 

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Just now, Tony-OH said:

Judging by the statcast numbers I've seen so far, it's Scerloer and it's not close. 

So do you think Wells is in danger? Or are they both good and Sceroler is just that much better?

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Just now, Tony-OH said:

Judging by the statcast numbers I've seen so far, it's Scerloer and it's not close. 

That's pretty interesting. Just going off ST (what little we could see with our eyeballs), I would have thought the opposite. 

One thing I noticed is that both guys have great mound presence for a couple of AA pitchers. I enjoy that. 

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Just now, interloper said:

That's pretty interesting. Just going off ST (what little we could see with our eyeballs), I would have thought the opposite. 

One thing I noticed is that both guys have great mound presence for a couple of AA pitchers. I enjoy that. 

Me too. In fact, I'm pretty sure I said I preferred Wells based of what I saw and the limited amount of statcast data we had on their outings in the spring. That split change is the game changer for Sceroler. If this pitch is for real and he can command it like he did, that makes his other high spin rate stuff play up.

The two outings I've seen of Wells this season have really been lackluster. He's basically been a 94 MPH fastball, slider guy with an occasional curve tat he has not commanded well. He flashed one decent change in yesterday's outing, but if the Orioles don't see his stuff eventually playing up a starter, I don't think he has enough to keep him around all year as a bullpen guy that you can't yo-yo back and forth between Norfolk and Baltimore.

I wouldn't give up on him already, but I haven't seen enough arm strength or some plus pitch that misses bats in a relief role to get me too excited. In no way shape of form would i have ever had traded Zach Pop for him.

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7 minutes ago, Philip said:

So do you think Wells is in danger? Or are they both good and Sceroler is just that much better?

It's early and Sceroler only has one outing and Wells two one inning stints, but if one needs to go back to make room it should be Wells every day of the week and twice on Sunday from what the statcast info tells me.

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1 hour ago, Tony-OH said:

It's early and Sceroler only has one outing and Wells two one inning stints, but if one needs to go back to make room it should be Wells every day of the week and twice on Sunday from what the statcast info tells me.

Tony, I don’t read statcast very well, and I can’t understand heat maps. Can you go into a little detail? I understand the benefit of spin rate, but everything else is a little obtuse for me.

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4 minutes ago, Philip said:

Tony, I don’t read statcast very well, and I can’t understand heat maps. Can you go into a little detail? I understand the benefit of spin rate, but everything else is a little obtuse for me.

Obtuse!   Straight to solitary confinement with you.

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