Yankee Starters In Control

Earlier this week, Chris took a look at the (very impressive) average fastball velcoties of the Yankee’s starting rotation. Reader OldRanger astutely pointed out the following:

As (I think) we all know, speed without Command & Control means nothing. Even without a lot of movement, C&C covers a lot of sins.

OldRanger makes a great point. Looking at fastball velocity tells us a piece of the story, but we also have to take control into account. Here are the Yankee starters ranked by BB/9 in 2008, and then fastball velocity:

  • C.C. Sabathia: 2.09 BB/9m, 93.7 Mph
  • Andy Pettitte: 2.4 BB/9, 88.5 Mph
  • Chien-Ming Wang: 3.3 BB/9, 91.8 Mph
  • A.J. Burnett: 3.5 BB/9, 94.3 Mph
  • Joba Chamberlain: 3.5 BB/9, 95 Mph

No one has particularly bad control. Burnett and Chamberlain are slightly below average, but both manage to strike out around a batter per inning, which compensates for that quite nicely. Sabathia is particularly deadly in both departments, and Pettitte makes up for his velocity with strong control. Wang’s walk rate was elevated last year, and should return to the mid-2s level.

The Yankee staff is well rounded in many different ways.

About EJ Fagan

E.J. Fagan been blogging about Yankee baseball since 2006. He is a Ph.D. student at University of Texas at Austin.

One thought on “Yankee Starters In Control

  1. I think the greatness of CC can be seen right there- he throws hard and hits his spots. I think Wanger had some control issues while tinkering with a slider.