CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Futures Guide 2014 is Now Available in Paperback and Three E-book Formats.

Premium and Super Premium Subscribers Get a 20% Discount at MLB.tv!

<< Previous Article
Manufactured Runs: Lis... (05/14)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Dum... (05/13)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Loo... (05/17)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article The Stash List: The Ba... (05/15)

May 15, 2013

Fantasy Freestyle

An Out-of-Tune Vogelsong

by Jason Collette


The Giants saw enough from Ryan Vogelsong in his first season back from oblivion that they gave him a new contract that could keep him in San Francisco through the 2014 season. In 2012, Vogelsong picked up right where he left off in 2011, but that success story has not continued thus far in 2013.

To date, opponents have hit .323 against him with a 939 OPS and a .370 batting average on balls in play. Those numbers are a dramatic spike from the past two seasons, when batters hit .243 against him with just a 680 OPS and a .286 BABIP.

The struggles are not sitting well with Vogelsong, who has both shown his frustrations and expressed them. He recently said, “I wish there was something wrong so I could blame it on that, but there’s nothing wrong with me.”

From reviewing Vogelsong’s player card at Brooks Baseball, a few things stand out. His average fastball velocity is sitting at 90.5 mph this season, down from 91.3 in 2012, and continuing a three-year decline in average velocity. Given the fact that he is 35 years old, this is not terribly surprising. What does stand out is a slightly higher vertical release point that coincides neatly with a decline in horizontal movement on his pitches. As a result of that diminished movement, his ground-ball rates are in decline, and his swing-and-miss rates are trending downward, too.

From a skills standpoint, here is how Vogelsong’s rates in 2013 compare to his work over the previous two seasons:

SPLIT

K%

BB%

SWING%

MISS%

STR%

GB%

LD%

FB%

‘11-’12

19.3%

8.0%

43.9%

18.5%

63.4%

45.5%

17.3%

37.1%

2013

20.2%

8.2%

44.6%

19.0%

62.1%

42.6%

18.6%

38.8%

Despite the inferior batted-ball outcomes, Vogelsong’s supporting skills are very much in line with what he did over the previous two seasons. He is striking out more hitters now than in the past while throwing a smaller percentage of strikes in the zone. The .370 BABIP would normally be indicative of an inflated line-drive rate, but his current rate is not much different than it was when he was pitching well, and it is still better than the league average.

The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.

Not a subscriber?

Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.


Cancel anytime.


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

5 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Manufactured Runs: Lis... (05/14)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Dum... (05/13)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Loo... (05/17)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article The Stash List: The Ba... (05/15)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Minor League Update: Games of Tuesday, April...
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Wednesday, April 23
Moonshot: What PITCHf/x Can Tell Us About Ba...
Painting the Black: Some Things Brewing
Premium Article What You Need to Know: Historic Tuesday
Premium Article Overthinking It: Pujols Rewrites the Script
The Lineup Card: 10 of Our Favorite Pitches

MORE FROM MAY 15, 2013
The Lineup Card: 10 Interesting Excerpts fro...
Pebble Hunting: The Starts That Defied FIP
Premium Article What You Need to Know: The Best Brew in Town
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Wednesday, May 15
Premium Article Out of Left Field: Did the Dodgers Make Suck...
Fantasy Article The Stash List: The Bad Teams With a Plan
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around the League: May 15th, ...

MORE BY JASON COLLETTE
2013-05-29 - BP Fantasy Podcast: Episode 46: We Have Musi...
2013-05-22 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Cool Slider, Bro
2013-05-19 - BP Fantasy Podcast: Episode 45: You Spin Me ...
2013-05-15 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: An Out-of-Tune Vogelsong
2013-05-14 - BP Fantasy Podcast: Episode 44 is live
2013-05-08 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Fernando Rodney: Tapped O...
2013-05-05 - BP Fantasy Podcast: Episode 43: Poetic Justi...
More...

MORE FANTASY FREESTYLE
2013-05-22 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Cool Slider, Bro
2013-05-20 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Digging Deeper Than Deep
2013-05-17 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Loosening the Trade Lines
2013-05-15 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: An Out-of-Tune Vogelsong
2013-05-13 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Dumping Targets, a Look B...
2013-05-10 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Four Hot Hitters
2013-05-08 - Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Fernando Rodney: Tapped O...
More...