Posted 20 February 2012 - 03:06 PM
My first comment on the new site - this is pretty awesome, kudos to you guys for getting this up and running.
Despite the defense behind him, Pavano's FIP has remained remarkably consistent for the last three seasons (4.00, 4.02, 4.10). In addition, if you look deeper into his plate disciple stats available on FanGraphs, it's pretty interesting that Pavano has ranked among the league leaders in generating swings on pitches outside the strike zone (O-swing %). If you look at the leaders from last season, you'll see Fister, Nolasco, Haren, Garza, Halladay, Sabathia, and Pavano. One of these things certainly seems to be not like the others. However, if you then look at his O-contact percentage (hitters making contact on pitches outside the zone), there's been a steady increase from 69% in 2009, 71% in 2010, and 76% last year, which may help to partly explain his declining K rate. The most obvious reason for this would seem to be declining stuff - his pitch type value (a metric for "wins" generated by individual pitch types) for his slider decreased markedly from 2010 to 2011. I'm not enough of a pitchFX expert to actually know if his slider has lost movement or if there's something going on with his mechanics or release point (I'd look to someone like Parker for that) but just thought that was interesting. He's generating a similar number of swings outside the zone but those pitches are much more hittable.