After a bullpen affair in the AL Wild Card Game, the Yankees move on to face the top team in the American League, the Cleveland Indians. New York homered three times in the Wild Card game against Minnesota. Cleveland’s pitching staff had the lowest ERA (3.30) this season, but they will face a tough task silencing New York’s big bats. Without further ado, Remarkable! helps breakdown the series…
Trevor Bauer – FB 49.2%, CT 13.3%, CV 29.9%, CH 7.7%
In a surprise move, Manager Terry Francona hands the ball to Trevor Bauer for game one of the ALDS. Bauer had a 5.24 ERA in the first half, but turned it around in the second half to the tune of a 3.01 ERA. Many of his numbers do not look too different, but batters are chasing pitches out of the strike zone more frequently:
If the Yankees want to have success against Bauer, they may want to jump on him early in the count. Opponents are hitting .519 against him on the first pitch of at-bats since the All-Star Break, second highest in MLB. Bauer’s best pitch is his big 12/6 curveball. Opponents have an OPS of just .556 against his curve (league avg. .612). Against the heart of the order (3-4-5 batters in the lineup), Bauer has thrown his curve 37.6 percent of the time since the All-Star Break, eighth most in MLB (league avg. 21.8 percent).
Corey Kluber – FB 42.4%, CT 24.0%, CV 27.2%, CH 6.4%
The Indians Ace gets the ball in Game 2 of this five-game set. His best pitch is his sharp curveball:
This season Kluber is first in OPS against (.556), first in OBP (.235), and third in strikeout rate (34.1 percent). He has not allowed a walk in his last 127 PAs against a right-handed hitter dating back to August 13. In fact, the Cleveland ace has only walked 4.6 percent of batters this season, fourth lowest among qualified starters. The Yankees will likely have to swing the bats to have success in Game 2.
Carlos Carrasco – FB 48.3%, SL 21.1%, CV 15.1%, CH 16.5%
Carrasco might be the best “number two” pitcher on any team. His success has stemmed from his changeup and slider. Opponents have a groundball rate of 75.5 percent (71/94) against Carrasco’s changeup this season, the highest rate among qualified starters. A few more notes on the slider and changeup:
In September, Carrasco tallied his highest strikeout rate (31.1 percent) and lowest walk rate (3.7 percent) of any month this season.
Josh Tomlin – FB 35.5%, CT 35.3%, CV 24.1%, CH 5.2%
For the Indians, Josh Tomlin is slotted to start the fourth game of this series. The crafty righty has only walked 14 of 585 batters (2.4 percent walk rate) this season, best among qualified starters. In the second half of the season, Tomlin has induced 10 double plays in 28 opportunities (35.7 percent), the highest rate among starters.
Sonny Gray – FB 34.3%, SNK 26%, SL 17.1%, CV 13.0%, CH 9.5%
Since arriving from Oakland in a trade, Gray has seen his groundball rate (58.5% to 48.9%), strikeout rate (23.5% to 21.2%), and walk rate (7.5% to 9.7%) trend in the wrong direction. Despite that, opponents are only hitting .158 against Sonny Gray (18-for-114) on non-fastballs since the All-Star Break, 10th best among qualified starters. Left-handed batters have not recorded a hit (22 PAs) against Gray’s slider. His off-speed stuff is strong, but Gray has also seen success working inside. Hitters have a .491 OPS (53 PAs) against Gray on inside pitches (League Avg. .773).
Masahiro Tanaka – FB 29.9%, CT 7.4%, SL 30.5%, CV 6.0%, SPL 26.2%
In his last start of the season, Masahiro Tanaka racked up 15 strikeouts in seven innings. He hopes to continue with another strong performance against a solid Cleveland lineup. The Indians will likely get a steady dose of off-speed pitches in this game. Tanaka has thrown his off-speed pitches 71.3 percent of the time (351/492) versus left-handed batters since the All-Star Break, highest among starters. Against righties, he still threw off-speed pitches 59 percent (944/1595 – League Avg. 41 percent) of the time.
His slider and split-finger are his two dominant pitches, but they have big lefty/righty splits:
|SL vs. LHB||.237||.492||31.8%||47.2%|
|SL vs. RHB||.198||.371||49.5%||35.2%|
|SPL vs. LHB||.187||.236||48.5%||77.2%|
|SPL vs. RHB||.276||.552||49.7%||55.2%|
Since the All-Star Break, Tanaka has allowed an OBP of .267 (82/307), 16th best of 185 qualified starters.
C.C. Sabathia – FB 26.2%, CT 27.2%, SL 31.2%, CH 16.3%
Batters are slugging .742 (23 total bases/ 31 ABs) on changeups since the All-Star Break, second worst in the MLB. Despite that, Sabathia is running the fourth lowest BABIP (.150) in the second half. A couple more notable items from Remarkable!:
Sabathia has thrown his slider 45.8% of the time (189/413) vs left-handed batters this season (Rank: 2nd of 91 qualified SPs in MLB; League Avg: 17.2%).
Opponents have a Well-Hit Avg of just .145 (12/83) against him on the first pitch of at-bats this season (Rank: 6th of 135 qualified SPs in MLB; League Avg: .241).
– FB 51.4%, SL 35.1%, CH 13.5%
Severino only lasted one out in the AL Wild Card Game. In fact, the four hits is the most against Severino in the first inning since an outing in September 2015. Despite his poor performance, Severino is one of the best AL starters. A lot of his success comes from his slider and changeup:
Severino threw 118 fastballs 100 mph and above, more than double the next highest starting pitcher in the Majors. Batters are only hitting .206 against the Yankees Ace (150-for-720), the sixth lowest mark among qualified starters. We will see if Severino can bounce back from his Wild Card outing.
New York Relievers
The Yankees pen was called upon to get 26 outs in the AL Wild Card Game. Here was their final line for their outing:
Here are some more Remarkable! notes on the Yankees bullpen:
- Opponents are hitting .191 against Yankees relievers (179-for-937) since the All-Star Break (Rank: 1st of 30 in MLB; League Avg: .245)
- Chad Green has a strikeout rate of 56.8% (25/44) with RISP this season (Rank: 2nd of 221 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: 21.7%).
- Aroldis Chapman has thrown 456 fastballs at 100+ MPH this season (Rank: 1st of 28 qualified RPs in MLB).
- David Robertson has recorded 64 of his 98 strikeouts (65.3%) with his curveball this season (Rank: 8th of 205 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: 11.6%).
- Dellin Betances struck out 45.8% (55/120) of left-handed batters he faced this season (Rank: 3rd of 236 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: 22.7%).
- Tommy Kahnle has a strikeout rate of 60.0% (96/160) with two strikes this season (Rank: Tied for 4th of 238 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: 43.5%).
- Adam Warren has allowed an OPS of .457 (139 PAs) vs right-handed batters this season (Rank: 8th of 250 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: .720).
While there are a lot of impressive characters in the Cleveland starting rotation, the relievers are nothing to scoff at. Cody Allen and Andrew Miller lead the way with some incredible numbers:
- Cody Allen has allowed a slugging percentage of .033 (1 Total Bases / 30 ABs) on high fastballs since the All-Star Break (Rank: 1st of 48 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: .390).
- Opponents have a Well-Hit Avg of .016 (1/64) against Andrew Miller since the All-Star Break (Rank: 1st of 249 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: .151).
- Indians relievers have allowed an OPS of .612 (1,208 PAs) vs right-handed batters this season (Rank: 1st of 30 in MLB; League Avg: .720).
- Right-handed hitters have a miss rate of 49.6% (59/119) against Nick Goody since the All-Star Break (Rank: 2nd of 250 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: 26.7%).
- Left-handed hitters have a groundball rate of 70.0% (56/80) against Bryan Shaw this season (Rank: 5th of 225 qualified RPs in MLB; League Avg: 45.4%).
- Opponents are hitting .167 against Indians relievers (12-for-72) in lefty-lefty matchups since the All-Star Break (Rank: 3rd of 30 in MLB; League Avg: .227)
New York hitters blasted three home runs in the Wild Card Game. Remarkable! has a lot to say about the Bronx Bombers:
- Aaron Judge has an OPS of 1.974 (151 PAs) when the pitcher is behind in the count this season (Rank: 1st of 145 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: 1.119).
- Didi Gregorius is slugging .810 (34 total bases in 42 ABs) on curves and sliders against RHP since the All-Star Break (Rank: 1st of 160 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .365).
- Gary Sanchez is slugging .405 (102 total bases in 252 ABs) with two strikes this season (Rank: 11th of 145 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .281).
- Aaron Hicks is batting just .108 (4-for-37) on the road since the All-Star Break (Rank: 159th of 159 part-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .249)
- Brett Gardner has gone to the opposite field with 50.5% of balls he’s put into play (52/103) with two strikes since the All-Star Break (Rank: 2nd of 160 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: 30.3%).
- Starlin Castro has 3 Extra-Base hits out of 25 total hits (just 12.0%) versus RHP since the All-Star Break (Rank: 90th of 91 part-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: 36.6%)
- Todd Frazier is batting just .208 (10-for-48) on the first pitch of at-bats this season (Rank: 143rd of 144 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .348)
Cleveland’s offense, led by an ever-improving Jose Ramirez, had the second highest OPS in the majors this season. Let’s take a look into Remarkable! and into their historic season:
- The Indians have scored first in 70.7% of their games (53/75) since the All-Star Break (Rank: 1st of 30 in MLB; League Avg: 50.0%).
- Jose Ramirez has an OPS of .810 (296 PAs) with two strikes this season (Rank: 1st of 145 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .531).
- Ramirez has an OPS of 1.188 (118 PAs) on pitches 94 mph or greater this season (Rank: 2nd of 145 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .759).
- Edwin Encarnacion is slugging .644 (76 total bases in 118 ABs) on curves and sliders against RHP this season (Rank: 2nd of 145 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .366).
- Francisco Lindor is slugging .647 (112 total bases in 173 ABs) on fastballs since the All-Star Break (Rank: 11th of 160 full-time hitters in MLB; League Avg: .468).
- Carlos Santana has chased just 12.3% of breaking pitches out of the zone (18/146) since the All-Star Break (Rank: 3rd fewest in MLB; League Avg: 32.3%).
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