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Wainwright's New Arm Slot via FanGraphs

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Wainwright's New Arm Slot via FanGraphs

Postby JTWood » Fri May 22, 2009 12:55 pm

ST. LOUIS -- Adam Wainwright believes he's identified the last remaining obstacle standing between him and the pitching form he knows he's capable of. He also knows that identifying the problem isn't enough.
The flaw, Wainwright believes, was a change in his release point when he pitches. He had started to pitch with his arm too high, which was affecting the movement and location of his pitches -- especially his fastball. "That high arm slot was something I used to do when I was young," he said. "When I was in Double-A, the pitching coach there had me lower it a little bit and I started pitching a lot better. Getting movement on the ball. I didn't have to be as fine. I could sink it and get ground balls."

He's pitched pretty darn well in his last two games:

vs. MIL: 8.0 IP, 1 ER 7 K, 2 BB
vs. CHN: 8.2 IP, 1 ER, 7 K, 1 BB

So did he change his arm slot for those games? God bless FanGraphs and PitchFx:

Versus the Reds, the start prior to the Brewers game

Versus Brewers

Versus Cubs

If you have a hard time telling the difference, click here and cycle through the game dates via the drop down at the top. Pretty neat that in this day and age we can analyze stuff like this with just a few mouse clicks.

Don't know if his success will keep up, but you have to like that he's executing the adjustment he said he needed to make in combination with the results they've generated thus far.

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Re: Wainwright's New Arm Slot via FanGraphs

Postby thatguy27 » Fri May 22, 2009 5:42 pm

Pretty interesting stuff, thanks for posting. ;-D

If he has indeed turned that corner, what kind of numbers can we expect going forward?

Maybe: 150 IP, 3.35 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 130 Ks?
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Re: Wainwright's New Arm Slot via FanGraphs

Postby jswede » Fri May 22, 2009 6:53 pm

interesting - a great post.... seems he's a little lower on the vertical and a little more left of center on his good days.

however I went back to 2008 to see if that pattern stuck and he had plenty of good days releasing higher and more center... can pitch fx be completely trusted as accrurate for such small deviations, such as this? (I'm not as familiar)
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