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Article: The Big Switch: Kyle Gibson

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#1 John Bonnes

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Posted 13 April 2014 - 06:29 PM

You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.co...tch-Kyle-Gibson

#2 clutterheart

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Posted 13 April 2014 - 07:35 PM

[COLOR=#3E3E3E]strikeout rate isn’t quite as important for a pitcher who relies on hitters hitting groundballs at his infielder[/COLOR]


I hear this a lot. Has data shown this to be true?

#3 old nurse

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Posted 13 April 2014 - 10:14 PM

I hear this a lot. Has data shown this to be true?


Right now Gibson has a high GB% and low LD%. I think it would indicate that the hitters are not making good contact. The key is that the sinker almost always has to be good or bad things happen. The data you seek would have to be from what happens when sinkerball pitchers pitch well.
I don't think anyone would complain if he had a career similar to Tim Hudson or Jake Westbrook. That is what can happen if you pitch well.

#4 tobi0040

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 07:38 AM

I think K per 9 is not a great way to evaluate a guy whose main objective is to keep the ball down and get ground balls.

Having said that, I think Gibson will settle in with a slightly higher K/9 than 4.8. I think his ceiling is Brandon Webb-light. Webb was a great pitcher, a decent 7k per 9 and high ground ball rate. In watching Gibson's starts so far, he has good movement and kept the ball down very well.

Webb's numbers.

http://www.baseball-.../webbbr01.shtml

#5 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 07:39 AM

I think Gibson's absolute ceiling is Webb. I'd love for him to reach it, I just don't see it happening. I'm not convinced he can miss that many bats.

I hope I'm wrong.

#6 cmathewson

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 07:54 AM

I think Gibson's absolute ceiling is Webb. I'd love for him to reach it, I just don't see it happening. I'm not convinced he can miss that many bats.

I hope I'm wrong.


The key to that is his offspeed stuff. When he throws everything hard, he gets a lot of grounders, and some of them get through the infield. When he throws his split (which DickNBrt call his slower sinker) and his change more often, he gets more Ks.
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#7 mike wants wins

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 07:56 AM

I think he's a legit, long term, MLB starter. It's been a while since we can say that about a guy they drafted and developed, so I'm happy about that. If he ends up a 2, awesome. But I'd guess he's a "3" long term, which is a good thing, imo.

#8 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 08:34 AM

I think he's a legit, long term, MLB starter. It's been a while since we can say that about a guy they drafted and developed, so I'm happy about that. If he ends up a 2, awesome. But I'd guess he's a "3" long term, which is a good thing, imo.


My thoughts as well. He might even end up a #4, which isn't optimal but is better than nothing.

#9 jimbo92107

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 08:41 AM

The key to that is his offspeed stuff. When he throws everything hard, he gets a lot of grounders, and some of them get through the infield. When he throws his split (which DickNBrt call his slower sinker) and his change more often, he gets more Ks.


Kyle Gibson now passes the eyeball test. He throws on a good downward plane, gets good sink while bending it right or left. His ability to change speeds is key because it gives his stuff one more dimension to worry about.

Frankly, I'd like it if he mixed in some four-seam fastballs, maybe half a dozen per outing. A "sinker baller" that sometimes throws a straight one could also induce some whiffs and pop-ups. With a bit of luck, Gibson could be a good starter for quite a while.

#10 ericchri

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 09:45 AM

I could have sworn before his TJ we were hearing he had a great slider. Am I misremembering that? Or does he just not throw it much?

#11 jgfellows

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 11:52 AM

Kyle Gibson is going to end the season with most wins of any twins starting pitchers.

#12 cmathewson

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 12:20 PM

I could have sworn before his TJ we were hearing he had a great slider. Am I misremembering that? Or does he just not throw it much?


He has a good but not great slider. He doesn't throw it often enough. I don't know how good it was prior to TJ. If that come from a pre-draft analysis, it might have been hype. Kohl Stewart is said to have a "whipe-out slider". That term is thrown around way too much for my taste.
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#13 tobi0040

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 12:21 PM

I think Gibson's absolute ceiling is Webb. I'd love for him to reach it, I just don't see it happening. I'm not convinced he can miss that many bats.

I hope I'm wrong.


Webb was a very, very good pitcher. Career 3.27 ERA, has won 22 games. 33 WAR across only 6 seasons.

I think 4.8 K per 9 in the major leagues is an anomoly. First, we are going off 11 innings. A little early to get into ratios like that. For his MLB career his K per 9 is 5.1, even that is only 62 IP.

In the minors he had 337 K's in 337 IP. Last year in AAA, he had 87 K in 101 IP (7.75 K per 9). His K's were pretty consistent from high A, AA, and AAA. He was not one of those who racked up a ton in rookie league.

#14 cmathewson

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 12:44 PM

Webb was a very, very good pitcher. Career 3.27 ERA, has won 22 games. 33 WAR across only 6 seasons.

I think 4.8 K per 9 in the major leagues is an anomoly. First, we are going off 11 innings. A little early to get into ratios like that. For his MLB career his K per 9 is 5.1, even that is only 62 IP.

In the minors he had 337 K's in 337 IP. Last year in AAA, he had 87 K in 101 IP (7.75 K per 9). His K's were pretty consistent from high A, AA, and AAA. He was not one of those who racked up a ton in rookie league.


This. Plus look at his Pitch F/X data. He's been seriously squeezed. I probably said "where was that pitch?" 10 times in his last start. Six of them were with 2 strikes. I didn't see the first start, but I saw the data. He will get more calls as umps get used to him.
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#15 tobi0040

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 12:46 PM

This. Plus look at his Pitch F/X data. He's been seriously squeezed. I probably said "where was that pitch?" 10 times in his last start. Six of them were with 2 strikes. I didn't see the first start, but I saw the data. He will get more calls as umps get used to him.


Yeah, I agree. He is getting no respect and hopefully that will come in time and help his numbers. A TD article said only 73 percent of his pitches in the zone were called for strikes last year, the league average is 81%. He was close to the worst.

#16 ericchri

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 12:48 PM

He has a good but not great slider. He doesn't throw it often enough. I don't know how good it was prior to TJ. If that come from a pre-draft analysis, it might have been hype. Kohl Stewart is said to have a "whipe-out slider". That term is thrown around way too much for my taste.


I think this is what I was thinking of, probably. I was certain I'd seen something to indicate he had a good slider. John Manuel listed Gibson as having the best slider in their system for his 2013 list.

http://www.baseballa...rospects-14343/

#17 tobi0040

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 12:57 PM

I think this is what I was thinking of, probably. I was certain I'd seen something to indicate he had a good slider. John Manuel listed Gibson as having the best slider in their system for his 2013 list.

http://www.baseballa...rospects-14343/


I don't have data, but I believe I have read his slider induces a lot of ground balls, versus a Liriano, Randy Johnson, etc.

#18 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 01:01 PM

Webb was a very, very good pitcher. Career 3.27 ERA, has won 22 games. 33 WAR across only 6 seasons.

I think 4.8 K per 9 in the major leagues is an anomoly. First, we are going off 11 innings. A little early to get into ratios like that. For his MLB career his K per 9 is 5.1, even that is only 62 IP.

In the minors he had 337 K's in 337 IP. Last year in AAA, he had 87 K in 101 IP (7.75 K per 9). His K's were pretty consistent from high A, AA, and AAA. He was not one of those who racked up a ton in rookie league.


I agree that Gibson's K rate *should* climb, I guess I'm just nervous about making any comparisons to Webb because, as you said, Webb was an incredibly effective pitcher for a time. An ace on most teams, a super-2 on the rest.

#19 tobi0040

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 01:08 PM

I agree that Gibson's K rate *should* climb, I guess I'm just nervous about making any comparisons to Webb because, as you said, Webb was an incredibly effective pitcher for a time. An ace on most teams, a super-2 on the rest.


Yeah, but Webb was able to put up great numbers with only a 7 k per 9, because os his ground balls. Pitchers usually are either K guys or ground ball guys. Webb was able to excel at the ground balls and still K some people. I think that is Gibson's MO. If he can K 6-7 per 9, he is going to be good. Not ace good, but very good.

The few that come to my mind are Carlos Silva, he had 4 K per 9. Pelfrey has a career 5.2 K per 9.

#20 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 01:13 PM

Yeah, but Webb was able to put up great numbers with only a 7 k per 9, because os his ground balls. Pitchers usually are either K guys or ground ball guys. Webb was able to excel at the ground balls and still K some people. I think that is Gibson's MO. If he can K 6-7 per 9, he is going to be good. Not ace good, but very good.

The few that come to my mind are Carlos Silva, he had 4 K per 9. Pelfrey has a career 5.2 K per 9.


Yeah, Webb was a rarity. Personally, I think Gibson will probably end up a 5-6k per 9 guy. Good, but not close to Webb.

If he can find a way to keep generating grounders with a 7k per 9, he should be very good.

#21 ALessKosherScott

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 03:05 PM

The guy Gibson has always reminded me of is Scott Erickson, which means he'll never be as great as you think he is during the good times or as horrible as you think during the bad ones. There's nothing wrong with that kind of a career trajectory if you can get it. But it's never going to be the kind of thing you build a rotation around.

#22 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 15 April 2014 - 08:08 AM

The guy Gibson has always reminded me of is Scott Erickson, which means he'll never be as great as you think he is during the good times or as horrible as you think during the bad ones. There's nothing wrong with that kind of a career trajectory if you can get it. But it's never going to be the kind of thing you build a rotation around.


A fair comparison. I'd take the Erickson comp at this point.