October 3, 2010
Javier Vazquez, The Yankee
Analyze This is a new weekly blog series in which Special Assistant Jesse Behr looks at a variety of intriguing and comparable stats that could stir up some discussion. Today, we’ll look at Javier Vazquez’s two adventurous campaigns with the New York Yankees.
While Johnny Damon’s double-homer show in Game Seven of the ALCS was (and still is) undoubtedly infamous, it’s Javier Vazquez’s part in the 22-0 massacre against the Indians that showed his “true (Yankee) colors.” After an All Star first-half in pinstripes, Javy compiled a 6.92 second-half ERA in 79
Re-acquired by New York in an offseason trade, Señor Vazquez has suffered through a tragic return to the Bronx. The line above was his last start of the season—and probably his last with New York—against the Blue Jays. There was nothing pretty about that outing, a horrible sign for a playoff-bound club. Vazquez has been been in and out of the rotation, and regardless of what role he has been filling, Vazquez has clearly not been the player the Yankees thought the Braves were shipping north. Let’s take a look at his overall statistics with the Bronx Bombers in 2004 and 2010:
Jay Jaffe pointed out to that Yankees have had so little trust in Vazquez that he's on his way to his lowest innings total since 1999, the first time he hasn't made 32 starts since 199, or struck out 150 batters after a streak of 10 straight seasons doing so.
Here's how hard Javy has thrown in New York compared to his career averages:
Vazquez’s slider usage has sky rocketed since 2004 (+10.1%, +2.6 MPH in 2010), while he’s gone to his changeup way less this season (-8.9%, -0.6 MPH). Is this the case of Javy trying to hard to get swings and misses? In the next set of stats, you’ll see Vazquez’s attempts to throw at hitters rather than around:
Decreases in Vazquez's BABIP has lead to an increase in HR/9 and BB/9. With his decreased velocity, he's not overpowering hitters, and he hasn't found a rhythm. Unfortunately, he's done a poor job of it all season long. Did trading for Javier Vazquez (-1.5 VORP) hurt New York's chances of an AL East division crown? Now, it’s time for you (the commentators) to discuss Vazquez’s NYC Mysteries and tell us where you think Javy will pitch in 2011.