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09-23

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What You Need to Know: September 23, 2014
by
Daniel Rathman

09-19

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1

Pebble Hunting: Cueto's Quirks
by
Sam Miller

09-19

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3

Raising Aces: Carlos in Charge
by
Doug Thorburn

07-11

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2

Raising Aces: Breakout Breakdown: Corey Kluber and Garrett Richards
by
Doug Thorburn

06-13

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1

Raising Aces: Under the Hood of the 2014 Draft, Part Three
by
Doug Thorburn

06-06

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Raising Aces: Under the Hood of the 2014 Draft, Part Two
by
Doug Thorburn

06-05

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1

Working the Count: Jose Abreu's Not-So-Slow Bat
by
Noah Woodward

05-30

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4

Raising Aces: Under the Hood of the 2014 Draft, Part One
by
Doug Thorburn

05-13

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BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 448: Why Can't We Have a Healthy Jose Fernandez?
by
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller

05-09

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4

Raising Aces: Making Setup Man Magic
by
Doug Thorburn

05-07

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12

The Knuckle Curveball
by
Dan Rozenson

05-02

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7

Raising Aces: Too Early to Worry?
by
Doug Thorburn

04-18

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2

BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 431: The Rising Strikeout Rate Symposium
by
Ben Lindbergh

04-18

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5

Raising Aces: Masahiro Tanaka, the Debut Ante
by
Doug Thorburn

04-11

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11

Raising Aces: Starting Pitcher Four-Pack
by
Doug Thorburn

04-09

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16

Pebble Hunting: Max Scherzer and the Sabermetric Approach to Pitching to the Count
by
Sam Miller

04-07

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9

Baseball Therapy: Beware of the Intentional Walk?
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-04

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Raising Aces: The Aces of Opening Day
by
Doug Thorburn

04-03

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2

Pitcher Profile: New Arms (and Pitches) of the Week
by
Harry Pavlidis

04-01

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14

Baseball Therapy: The Complete Value of a Complete Game
by
Russell A. Carleton

04-01

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7

Moonshot: Cracking the Location Code
by
Robert Arthur

03-28

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10

Raising Aces: Out on a Limb: 2014 Pitcher Predictions
by
Doug Thorburn

03-21

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3

Raising Aces: Bush League: Eddie Butler, Tyler Glasnow, and Alex Meyer
by
Doug Thorburn

03-14

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7

Raising Aces: Bush League: Jonathan Gray
by
Doug Thorburn

03-07

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9

Raising Aces: Over the Radar 2.0
by
Doug Thorburn

03-03

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17

Raising Aces: Under the Gun 2.0
by
Doug Thorburn

02-28

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Raising Aces: Bush League: Andrew Heaney
by
Doug Thorburn

02-21

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3

Raising Aces: Organizational Trends: Looking for Mechanical Hallmarks
by
Doug Thorburn

02-12

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4

BP Unfiltered: T-Mac's Mechanics
by
Doug Thorburn

02-07

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5

Raising Aces: Bush League: Archie Bradley
by
Doug Thorburn

02-06

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14

Baseball ProGUESTus: Entropy and the Eephus
by
Robert Arthur

01-24

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19

Raising Aces: Classic Deliveries: Fade to Black and White
by
Doug Thorburn

01-17

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9

Raising Aces: Classic Deliveries: Hall of Fame Inductees 1980-89
by
Doug Thorburn

01-10

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Raising Aces: Classic Deliveries: Hall of Fame Inductees of 1990-94
by
Doug Thorburn

01-03

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9

Raising Aces: The Good Old Days: Nolan Ryan
by
Doug Thorburn

12-27

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19

Raising Aces: Examining Masahiro Tanaka's Mechanics
by
Doug Thorburn

12-20

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2

Raising Aces: Bush League: Julio Urias
by
Doug Thorburn

12-16

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28

Baseball Therapy: What Happened to the Four-Man Rotation?
by
Russell A. Carleton

12-13

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3

Raising Aces: Bush League: Jameson Taillon
by
Doug Thorburn

12-06

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11

Baseball ProGUESTus: Explaining Mistake Splits
by
Evan Petty

12-06

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2

Raising Aces: Diff'rent Strikes
by
Doug Thorburn

12-05

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19

Measuring Pitching with TrackMan
by
Zach Day

11-15

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17

Baseball ProGUESTus: Pitch Types and the Times Through the Order Penalty
by
Mitchel Lichtman

11-15

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18

Raising Aces: Bush League: Noah Syndergaard
by
Doug Thorburn

11-08

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11

Raising Aces: Great Pitchers, Flawed Mechanics
by
Doug Thorburn

11-05

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42

Baseball ProGUESTus: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About the Times Through the Order Penalty
by
Mitchel Lichtman

11-01

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2

Raising Aces: Bush League: Kyle Zimmer
by
Doug Thorburn

10-30

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16

Baseball ProGUESTus: Is Speed Enough?: A PITCHf/x Look at the Effect of Fastball Velocity and Movement
by
Jonathan Hale

10-18

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7

Raising Aces: Bush League: Previewing the Winter's Pitching Prospect Breakdowns
by
Doug Thorburn

10-17

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BP Daily Podcast: Effectively Wild Episode 309: ALCS Game 4, NLCS Game 5, and More Listener Emails
by
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller

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September 23, 2014 6:00 am

What You Need to Know: September 23, 2014

0

Daniel Rathman

Lots of good pitching, occasional horrible pitching, and long, LONG game highlight yesterday's action.

The Monday Takeaway

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September 19, 2014 6:00 am

Pebble Hunting: Cueto's Quirks

1

Sam Miller

Johnny Cueto is a good pitcher. Johnny Cueto is a quirky pitcher. Is there a causal relationship?

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September 19, 2014 6:00 am

Raising Aces: Carlos in Charge

3

Doug Thorburn

On Carlos Carrasco's excellent six weeks in Cleveland

The Cleveland Indians retain the slimmest hopes of postseason baseball, but the team could be surprisingly dangerous in October if they happen to get red hot for the final week of regular-season play. The emergence of Corey Kluber has given the Tribe a legitimate ace who can face off against any pitcher in the American League, but the meteoric rise of another pitcher has caught the rest of the league off guard while giving Cleveland a potentially devastating one-two punch at the front of their rotation.

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A close look at the mechanics of two starters who've taken steps forward in 2014.

Pitcher breakouts are one of the most exciting aspects of each baseball season, but it’s hard to get riled up about them until we have a healthy chunk of the season in the rearview mirror. The halfway mark of the 2014 campaign has revealed a handful of players who have made great leaps in terms of value, both to their teams and on the stat sheet. Two of those pitchers are particularly intriguing. The Indians’ Corey Kluber and the Angels’ Garrett Richards have ascended to a higher plane of pitching performance this season, so let's dig into the components of each player's improvement.

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June 13, 2014 6:00 am

Raising Aces: Under the Hood of the 2014 Draft, Part Three

1

Doug Thorburn

Close looks at the mechanics of first-round picks Kyle Freeland, Kodi Medeiros, Sean Newcomb, and Brandon Finnegan

We wrap up our mechanical look at the draft's top pitchers this week, and after tracing the BP mock draft for the first two editions, this time we will shine the spotlight on the top selections who were drafted ahead of expectations.

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June 6, 2014 6:00 am

Raising Aces: Under the Hood of the 2014 Draft, Part Two

0

Doug Thorburn

Mechanical looks at four more first-rounders selected in the first round of the amateur draft.

The first round of the 2014 draft was saturated with arms, as teams popped pitchers with 13 of the top 19 picks. It may have been the result of an arm-heavy draft class, or perhaps teams are stockpiling moundsmen in the wake of the UCL epidemic of 2014; either way, the plethora of pitcher names called on day one of the draft was anticipated by the BP Prospect Staff in their “whom would you draft” mock that was conducted throughout the month of May. The exercise produced a match with reality at the top of the draft, nailing the identity and order of the first three players (and pitchers) picked: Brady Aiken, Tyler Kolek, and Carlos Rodon. I tackled that big three last week in Part One of the “Under the Hood” series, along with Jeff Hoffman, whose recent trip under the knife did little to drop his stock, as the Blue Jays snapped him up ninth overall.

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The book on Abreu said that he'd struggle against inside heat. Has the book been right?

When the White Sox signed Jose Abreu for $68 million over six years, responses ranged from optimism to skepticism about how the Cuban rookie’s swing might fare in the United States. In this year’s Baseball Prospectus Annual, for instance, we wondered whether Abreu possessed a swing that could “be tamed by well-placed fastballs on the inner half.” Baseball America’s 2014 Prospect Handbook included another knock: “Some scouts worry about his double toe-tap stride and average bat speed, fearing they will inhibit his ability to catch up with premium velocity on the inner half.”

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Mechanical looks at big-time pitching draft prospect Brady Aiken, Tyler Kolek, Carlos Rodon and Jeff Hoffman.

The 2014 first-year player draft is loaded with arms who are projected to fly off the board in the early going. The BP prospect crew recently conducted a mock draft of next Thursday's action, with each evaluator answering the question, “Whom would you draft?” The first edition covered the top 10 picks of the draft, and when all was said and done, the participants had chosen pitchers with eight of the first 10 selections, including the top four players overall. The only time in the history of the draft that the first four names announced were pitchers was in 2011, with the quartet of Gerrit Cole, Danny Hultzen, Trevor Bauer, and Dylan Bundy, and the early indications are that the arm-saturated draft of 2014 could match that tally.

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Ben and Sam discuss the Jose Fernandez injury and talk to Corey Dawkins and Doug Thorburn about the Tommy John rehab process and why pitchers keep getting hurt.

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May 9, 2014 10:15 am

Raising Aces: Making Setup Man Magic

4

Doug Thorburn

Breaking down the mechanics of high-octane setup men Chris Withrow and Dellin Betances.

One of the more visible signs of change in today's game is the reshaping of the bullpen, which has led to an increased emphasis on stockpiling ace relievers. Baseball has become saturated with strikeouts, and the solution becomes more concentrated as a game gets to the late innings and the leading team trots out a conga line of pitchers who specialize in whiffs. Today's ’pen is mightier than it’s ever been before.

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The skinny on the pitch that's taking baseball by storm.

Would you be surprised if I told you that over a quarter of the curveballs delivered by major league pitchers in 2013 were thrown with a knuckle curve grip? I certainly was. This was one of the results of the first comprehensive study of knuckle curveballs in the major leagues, which I have conducted after months of data collection. It is limited to PITCHf/x data, but the large population sizes give us a good first look at what knuckle curveballs behave like relative to standard curves.

What is a knuckle curveball?
First, let me define clearly what this study entails. A curveball is a pitch that, when thrown from a conventional arm angle, will drop from its normal trajectory due to topspin. It is also typically thrown slower than other pitches, so it drops significantly from the effect of gravity, as well. The two most important fingers in the curveball grip are usually the middle finger and the thumb. The middle finger and thumb rest on or beside seams on opposite sides of the ball, as in this image. At release, the thumb and middle finger spin the ball forward, giving it the desired topspin. The index finger is not needed at all to throw the pitch, and a handful of pitchers even leave it off the ball entirely.


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May 2, 2014 6:15 am

Raising Aces: Too Early to Worry?

7

Doug Thorburn

Examining Homer Bailey, Danny Salazar, and Justin Masterson.

Last week we studied a trio of pitchers who have enjoyed breakouts in performance over the first month of the season in order to distinguish legitimate improvement from potential mirage. This week, we examine the other side of the coin. There are a handful of pitchers who entered the season with high expectations yet have been knocked around the yard this April, and the most perplexing of these players are those whose peripheral stats are in line with last season but whose batted-ball profiles have taken a dive. It might be tempting to dismiss any vulnerability due to the vagaries of balls in play over small samples, but in some cases there are functional underpinnings to suggest that something has gone awry.

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