As of the 15th (Korean time), the player with the most strikeouts in the Major League this season is Atlanta’s young gun Spencer Strider. Strider pitched 169 innings this year and recorded a whopping 259 strikeouts.
Such a strider’s main weapon is a powerful fastball that reaches an average of 97.3 miles per hour (156.6 km) and a slider that boasts an incredible angle. He struck out 130 with his slider and 111 with his four-seamer this year. Although he is not a player with a variety of pitch types, the power of the traditional combo of four-seam and slider is very good. After 2S, another pitch, changeup, is virtually abandoned. The four-seam usage rate is 52.5%, and the slider usage rate is 40%, which is 92.5% of the total usage rate.
Hyun-Jin Ryu’s teammate Kevin Gausman (222), who has the most strikeouts in the American League, is one of the pitchers who throws the best splitter in the league. This year, the four-seamer usage rate is 50.5% and the splitter usage rate is 38.4%. He struck out 101 as a four-seamer and 120 as a splitter. After 2S, the splitter usage rate increases to 54%. In short, it is a pitch that you cannot hit even if you know it.
Blake Snell (San Diego), Kim Ha-seong’s teammate and a leading National League Cy Young Award candidate, also has a sharp increase in his curve ratio, which is his decisive pitch, after 2S. The overall proficiency rate is in the low 10% range, but after 2S, it rises to 33.6%. Gerrit Cole (New York Yankees) also increases his four-seamer and slider usage rates after 2S. Although they are league ace pitchers who know how to throw a variety of pitches, you can see that when they have to risk a game, they focus on the 1-2 pitches they are most confident in.
In that respect, Ryu Hyun-jin (36, Toronto) is a very special pitcher. Ryu Hyun-jin is far from a so-called fireballer. This year, Ryu Hyun-jin’s average four-seam fastball speed is only 88.5 miles (142.4 km), and the average sinker speed is only 87.8 miles (141.3 km). Among major league pitchers who threw more than 200 four-seamer pitches this year, those with slower average speeds than Ryu Hyun-jin include Brent Suter (Colorado, 86 mph), Kyle Hendrix (Chicago Cubs, 87.7 mph), and Rich Hill (San Diego, 88.3 mph). There are only three people. The four-seam average is worse than the KBO league average.
Nevertheless, Ryu Hyun-jin is cruising along with an ERA (2.93) in the 2-point range in eight games since returning from elbow surgery. In an era where balls traveling 100 mph (160.9 km) are rampant, success with a ball that travels less than 90 mph (144.8 km) cannot be explained simply by control and command. It is possible to combine these two strengths with a variety of pitches and the brains to manage them all. It is a decisive weapon that Ryu Hyun-jin can still make a living at the top level of the league.
Buck Martinez, a veteran commentator for ‘Sportsnet’, a Canadian sports network and broadcaster in Toronto, explains Ryu Hyun-jin’s advantage, saying, “Batterers cannot anticipate the next ball.” This year, Ryu Hyun-jin’s shooting percentage is 31.5% four-seam, 23.1% change-up, 17.8% curve, 16.5% cutter, and 11.1% sinker. Very even. It is difficult to go in targeting just one type of pitch. Here is the best advantage of taking full advantage of the differences in velocity between various pitches.
The four-seam is around 90 mph, the changeup is in the 70s, and the curveball is in the 60s, the slowest in the major leagues. Throwing a four-seamer to the borderline, then a changeup, and then a curveball again, it’s a killer for batters. There is another reason why hitters have difficulty targeting Ryu Hyun-jin. The pitch types after 2S cannot even be predicted.
After 2S, pitchers have no choice but to throw the deciding ball they are most confident in. This is clearly evident in the strikeout percentages of the league’s leading strikeout machines. But Ryu Hyun-jin can’t figure it out. Until the 15th, Ryu Hyun-jin pitched at a rate of 29.4% four-seam, 카지노사이트 23.0% change-up, 21.9% curve, and 21.4% cutter after 2S. Unlike other pitchers, the pitch rates for the four pitches are very even. It is thrown as if the proportions were set.
Even in unfavorable counts, it does not depend on any one pitch. When the count was behind, Ryu Hyun-jin showed a four-seam rate of 29.5%, a change-up rate of 27.3%, a cutter rate of 22.7%, and a curve rate of 15.9%. Usually, fastballs are thrown to score strikes, and this can sometimes affect the game of batters, but Ryu Hyun-jin’s rate of fastballs that are relatively easy to score strikes does not increase much.
In an unfavorable count of 2S, it is standard for the batter to narrow the zone and take the target. However, Ryu Hyun-jin is showing a command ratio that makes it impossible to target. When analyzing Ryu Hyun-jin before the game, one cannot help but be confused. There are times when a strategy succeeds, but you also have to take risks. Ryu Hyun-jin’s high looking strikeout rate this year also proves this. It turns out that it is difficult for him to prepare for all pitches with large differences in velocity.
Since it is difficult to predict, you have no choice but to look at the ball and hit it, and in that case, the possibility of a missed hit on a breaking ball increases accordingly. This year, Ryu Hyun-jin’s changeup average batting speed is only 84.3 miles (135.7 km) and the curve is only 82.6 miles (132.9 km). He also has an excellent overall distance of 86.7 miles (139.5 km). The average batting speed in 2019, which was said to be Ryu Hyun-jin’s peak period, was 86.6 miles (139.4 km). This could be very impressive data for teams considering recruiting Ryu Hyun-jin in the future.
As a pitcher gets older, his velocity inevitably decreases. It’s a given. However, control and sense of control deteriorate relatively slowly. Although Ryu Hyun-jin is a player in his mid-30s, he is still competitive because he is capable of clever pitching. This season’s pitching shows that Ryu Hyun-jin can still play at the Major League A level for two to three more years. Ryu Hyun-jin will start the game against Boston on the 18th and try again for his 4th win of the season.