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Thread: Potential of Kyle Gibson...

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
    To be fair to Gibson, cmat is right when he says that the umps are squeezing him like (almost) nobody else.
    According to this WSJ study late last season: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...80993358926108

    Gibson had the 5th least generous strike zone last season (79.2% of pitches in the zone called a strike).
    And, although I dont have the numbers, I've seen more of the same this year.
    The strike zone in his 2nd start was a joke.

    It is hard enough to come up and pitch in the big leagues as it is, without getting jobbed by the ump.
    When a full 1/5th of your strikes are called balls, I can see how that would pretty significantly affect your k/bb rate.
    Quote Originally Posted by cmathewson View Post
    It sucks to use small samples to prove a point. It sucks even worse to compare the smallest of samples with the largest. Maybe that's your point. Maybe you say you just can't answer the question without numbers. Again, if that's your point, fine. But if you're trying to prove some limitation of Gibson's potential based on small samples, I have a problem with that.

    If you want to use something other than numbers, like scouting reports or video or pitch F/x, perhaps you can make a claim about his potential. For example, in his two starts, he's shown the same tendency he had last year: Get ahead 0-2 and throw several strikes that the umpire refuses to call strikes. Then induce an out on contact. If Gibson had been operating on the same strike zone that Glavin and Maddux lived with, his K/Bob would be 10/1. I don't know how long it will take the umps to start calling more strikes for him. But when it starts happening, he will be a solid #2 starter. When they do make contact, they make easy outs most of the time.
    I've been Gibson's biggest proponent for a year now. But until this thread, I hadn't seen anyone compare him to a Hall of Famer, and as positive as the results have been for his first 2 starts this year, that was my objection for coming to sweeping conclusions on a player's career from 2 good, but shaky starts. Let me go out on a limb yet again and predict that Gibson won't average 215 an innings per year & average a 3.50 ERA over the next 20 years- even if he gets the same alleged advantage that Maddux and Glavine had.


    In looking at the F/X data from Kyle's first 2 starts, I'm not sure what you're seeing this year ( I know you wrote about Gibson getting screwed by the umps in 2013), but it's actually been the tale of two pitchers-

    Game 1- he had a tendency to wild high, with 4 out of zone/borderline strikes called with 6 in-zone balls called.

    http://pitchfx.texasleaguers.com/pit...o=4%2F5%2F2014



    Game 2- most of his pitches were down in the zone and his wildness was low, with one out of zone strike called and 3 in-zone balls called.

    http://pitchfx.texasleaguers.com/pit...=4%2F11%2F2014
    Last edited by jokin; 04-13-2014 at 12:19 PM.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokin View Post
    I've been Gibson's biggest proponent for a year now. But until this thread, I hadn't seen anyone compare him to a Hall of Famer, and as positive as the results have been for his first 2 starts this year, that was my objection for coming to sweeping conclusions on a player's career from 2 good, but shaky starts. Let me go out on a limb yet again and predict that Gibson won't average 215 an innings per year & average a 3.50 ERA over the next 20 years- even if he gets the same alleged advantage that Maddux and Glavine had.


    In looking at the F/X data from Kyle's first 2 starts, I'm not sure what you're seeing this year ( I know you wrote about Gibson getting screwed by the umps in 2013), but it's actually been the tale of two pitchers-

    Game 1- he had a tendency to wild high, with 4 out of zone/borderline strikes called with 6 in-zone balls called.

    http://pitchfx.texasleaguers.com/pit...o=4%2F5%2F2014



    Game 2- most of his pitches were down in the zone and his wildness was low, with one out of zone strike called and 3 in-zone balls called.

    http://pitchfx.texasleaguers.com/pit...=4%2F11%2F2014
    Yep, and that is why you need to be careful using the "eye test"! I should know better.
    However, that said, there were a LOT of pitches that either touched the black, or missed by a tiny amount.
    I count 14. A lot of pitchers get some of those calls, Gibson only got 1 of them.

  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
    To be fair to Gibson, cmat is right when he says that the umps are squeezing him like (almost) nobody else.
    According to this WSJ study late last season: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...80993358926108

    Gibson had the 5th least generous strike zone last season (79.2% of pitches in the zone called a strike).
    And, although I dont have the numbers, I've seen more of the same this year.
    The strike zone in his 2nd start was a joke.

    It is hard enough to come up and pitch in the big leagues as it is, without getting jobbed by the ump.
    When a full 1/5th of your strikes are called balls, I can see how that would pretty significantly affect your k/bb rate.
    Never been a fan of replay, but I am all in on electeonic balls and strikes. Umpiring has sunk to a new low levels of patheticness.

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  5. #24
    Please ban me! All-Star stringer bell's Avatar
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    On the subject of umpiring, technology is demonstrating how tough it is to get balls and strikes right, not that umpiring has sunken or risen IMHO. On Gibson, he needs to consistently hit the mitt and he'll start to get those borderline calls.

  6. #25
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stringer bell View Post
    On the subject of umpiring, technology is demonstrating how tough it is to get balls and strikes right, not that umpiring has sunken or risen IMHO. On Gibson, he needs to consistently hit the mitt and he'll start to get those borderline calls.
    That's what irked me watching his last game. Suzuki would set up over the inside corner, he'd hit the mitt, and the ump would call a ball. A couple of times with two strikes, the ball actually moved more over the plate, forcing Suzuki to move the mitt toward the center of the plate to catch it, and he still called it a ball. It seems they give him a different strike zone with two strikes. Growing up, we were taught to protect the plate with two strikes. If anything, the opposite is the case now. Gibson's last start was a case in point. Since the context was K/BB, I thought called third strikes (especially on 3-2 pitches) was relevant.

    The only reason I compared him to hall of famers is not because I think he will be. But Glavin and Maddux were legendary for getting pitches called on the black. You hardly ever saw them throw pitches over the heart of the plate. They were on the corners and out. And they got a lot of balls called strikes. Those days are gone, especially for young pitchers. Now you practically have to throw it down the middle to get a third strike called.
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

  7. #26
    Twins Moderator MVP USAFChief's Avatar
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    The theory that strike calls are harder to get now than in the past would seem to be at odds with the steady rise in strikeouts over MLB in recent history.
    Every post is not every other post. - a wise man

  8. #27
    Senior Member All-Star cmathewson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    The theory that strike calls are harder to get now than in the past would seem to be at odds with the steady rise in strikeouts over MLB in recent history.
    I would say yes if you qualified that to say "strikeouts looking". If most of the increase in strikeouts were swinging strikes, I don't think it invalidates the theory. Even then, I think it's more complex than that. Guys take more pitches in general now than they did 20 years ago. Perhaps emboldened by a sense of calm with two strikes, guys take closer pitches in those counts than they did 20 years ago. If the umpires change the implicit rules of the game, players will adapt. That's what I see.

    You watch the Red Sox and Yankees play and the players are shocked to be called out on strikes. They walk back to the dugout shaking their heads and sayings stuff under their breath, the gist of which is, "You're not supposed to do that!"
    "If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

  9. #28
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    Sinkerball pitchers are always walking a fine line. Because a sinker is slower than a 4 seam fastball, the movement and location is much more important. Sinkers that don't move or are not on the corners get hit. That's why we've seen so many sinkerballers have a good season here and there but cannot sustain over the course of a career. Scott Erickson was a great example: when he first came up he threw a hard sinker that moved all over the place. He was nearly unhittable. Then he had the dreaded "elbow cleanout" and that sinker never had the same life and he became an average pitcher for the remainder of his career.

    Gibson has nice movement on his sinker: if he maintains that, commands it a little better and adds better secondary pitches, he could be a very fine pitcher. Only time will tell.

  10. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivlikejehu View Post
    Gibson hasn't been particularly dominant in the high minors, and obviously not the Majors. He's already 26. We're lucky if he's a #3... he's certainly no ace.

    He had a sub 3.00 ERA last year in AAA with 7.75 K per 9. And his MO is ground balls.

  11. #30
    Senior Member Triple-A h2oface's Avatar
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    If Gibson got the correct calls by the umpires, his line would look a lot different. He is hitting the edges great. He just is the victim of bad umpiring, at this point.

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  13. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Linus View Post
    Sinkerball pitchers are always walking a fine line. Because a sinker is slower than a 4 seam fastball, the movement and location is much more important. Sinkers that don't move or are not on the corners get hit. That's why we've seen so many sinkerballers have a good season here and there but cannot sustain over the course of a career. Scott Erickson was a great example: when he first came up he threw a hard sinker that moved all over the place. He was nearly unhittable. Then he had the dreaded "elbow cleanout" and that sinker never had the same life and he became an average pitcher for the remainder of his career.

    Gibson has nice movement on his sinker: if he maintains that, commands it a little better and adds better secondary pitches, he could be a very fine pitcher. Only time will tell.
    I made this comp on another Kyle Gibson thread. But he is similar to Brandon Webb, albeit not quite as good.

    Typical sinker pitchers like Carlos Silva or Pelfrey have very low K rates, 4 per 9 and 5.2 per 9 for their careers. Brandon Webb was a guy that kept the ball down and was still able to K 7.2 batters per nine in his career. Here are his career numbers:

    Webb - 3.27 ERA, 7.2 K per 9, 64.2% career ground ball rate. .63 HR per 9.

    In the minors, Gibson had 337 IP and 337 K. His last year at AAA he had 7.75 K per 9 and allowed only .44 HR per 9. I can't find minor league ground ball/fly ball ratios, but so far Gibson has a ground ball rate of 58.8% this year versus 50.3% last year. That is one of the reasons why he has been better this year.

    If Gibson can keep his 58.8% ground ball rate or improve it and get his K rate up over 6, he will be a good #2 or #3 starter in this league. I think the K rate is low because of the ump's, as others have pointed out.

  14. #32
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    I am excited about Gibson thus far.

    It might be ump related but I will really get excited when his WHIP comes down.
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