AJ’s ineffectiveness really manifests itself with 2-strike counts. With the charts below, you can see that Burnett is less in-the-zone this year versus last year. Could that be because of his decreased FB? No matter the reason, AJ’s staying away from the zone with two strikes, allowing batters to wait for something more to their liking.
Up, up and away! The heat charts below shows the swinging strike locations for AJ. This year, more strikes up in the zone. Up in the zone is bad news. Hits/9 are up this year (9.6 vs 8.4 last year), HR/9 remain flat at 1.1, while K/9 are down (as mentioned earlier) at 7.0 vs 8.5 last year. Is this his ineffective curveball manifesting itself? If it’s not diving down, it’s getting hit.
Location, location, location. I’ll let Brian explain this one: “The chart below seems to show Burnett getting less called strikes up in the zone (more blue up top in the 2010 plot). This could be for one of two reasons: 1) he’s not throwing as many pitches up in the zone or 2) he’s not getting that call this season. But, since we see that he’s getting more swinging strikes up in the zone from the previous plot, maybe people are just swinging more at those pitches and therefore there are less strikes CALLED up in the zone.” Sounds good to me. The chart:
Ahead in the count, behind in the count. Here are the charts of AJ pitching both ahead and behind in the count, this year versus last:
Just for giggles. And lastly, a contrast of AJ and Mariano Rivera: