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Pitching to the Yankees

Posted by MaxOelerking , 23 April 2018 · 489 views

pitching yankees scouting
Today I wanted to break down how the Twins pitchers can beat the Yankees top hitters. I will talk about where to get swings and misses, outs, and where to simply avoid placing the ball (danger zones).

Brett Gardner
Gardner is a pest at the plate. Very tough to strikeout and always battles. Swings and misses don't happen often, (lowest on Yankees at 4.62%) but he is patient (10.46% called first strike) and he struggles with pitches on the outer half or down and out of the zone. Getting him into two-strike counts is going to be key since his wOBA is only .218 with two strikes. Even if he doesn't swing and miss, most of his outs come on outer half pitches anyway. Gardner is most dangerous on pitches that are left up in the zone or leak into the middle of the zone.
KEYS: Get ahead early, miss out of the zone.

Aaron Judge
With Stanton hitting behind Judge, its going to be tough to pitch around. Definitely want to limit base runners with this much power in the lineup. Judge has had trouble making contact with pitches low and away so if Twins pitchers can pound that corner, he won't have much success (62.9% strikes on pitches low and away). He has also yet to get a hit on a fastball up in the zone. Pitchers with good velocity will have success mixing in elevated fastball that he will either swing under or change his eye level. Anywhere over the plate is dangerous against Judge. He barrels up a ton of pitches that are anywhere over the heart of the plate.
KEYS: Spot pitches low and away, elevate the fastball.

Giancarlo Stanton
We all know about the crazy power Stanton has and how dangerous of a hitter he can be. So far, he's struggled a bit this season, mostly because he's swinging and missing 17.09% of the time. Fastballs and sliders have made up over 76% of his swinging strikes. His biggest weakness is the high fastball. Any pitch that doesn't get up enough will probably be crushed so the Twins need to make sure to miss high instead of laying fastballs over the heart of the plate or hanging breaking-balls that he can send into orbit.
KEYS: Elevate the fastball, breaking-balls out of the zone.

Didi Gregorius
Gregorius has been hot so far this season as the Yankees SS. His strength is that he does not miss on pitches in the zone. He has had a lot of success so far on low pitches that he can elevate. Gregorius is a tough customer to strikeout, so keeping the ball up and away from his danger zone is key. He's a tough out so Twins pitchers need to hit their spots while staying in the strikezone because he is not a guy that chases a ton of pitches.
KEYS: Challenge in the zone, stay away from low strikes.

Gary Sanchez
Sanchez is another hitter that can be dangerous when he gets his pitch. Pitches up and in or on the outer half he struggles with so that will be a key for Twins pitchers to stay on those edges. Almost 50% of his swings and misses come on slider low and away out of the zone. Sanchez has success hitting pitches on the inner half or anything left over the heart of the plate.
KEYS: Slider down and away.

If the Twins pitching staff has success against these hitters, then we should be successful in the Bronx.