Stats and the 2017 Kansas City Royals: The Not-Good
Here’s a spot where losing some of the hard-throwing bullpen guys (and our late, lamented #ACE30) really stings. As a staff, the pitchers don’t throw hard.
Well, that’s not quite accurate. I’m sure the pitcher’s are throwing hard and trying their best, but they have no velocity. Thus, the average 92.5 MPH fastball velocity, second from the bottom in baseball behind the Twins.
The addition of Neftali Feliz, who still flings it in the upper-90s even at this late hour in his career, will help. And Kelvin Herrera can still touch triple digits. But the erstwhile No. 1 (until Danny Duffy returns) is averaging 86.9 MPH; this isn’t a knock on Jason Vargas, but it is indicative of the razor’s edge he walks on.
All told, six hurlers who have combined to toss more than 330 innings have struggled to break a 93 MPH average—Vargas, Travis Wood, Peter Moylan, Jake Junis, Jason Hammel and Ian Kennedy. That doesn’t include the departed Chris Young, who managed to throw 30 major league innings in 2017 with two pitches, one a fastball that barely cracked 88 on a good day. Tough to imagine we’ll see that many more times.
Next: Royals drop series in the Motor City
Anyway, that’s what I found. If you have some other stats I couldn’t discover, send them my way. We’ll run back the other side of this coin next week.