Exploring the Arsenal – Raul Valdes

Exploring the Arsenal will run prior to each game, providing you with a brief scouting report on the starting pitcher expected to oppose the Pirates. The chart below shows the horizontal and vertical movement of every pitch thrown by that particular pitcher in 2012. This chart is from the catcher’s point of view. For a general guide to pitch types for a right-handed pitcher, please check out this image created by Sons of Sam Horn. Graphs are courtesy of Brooks Baseball and The Hardball Times , unless otherwise specified.

Pitch Types  
FA: Four-Seam Fastball FT: Two-Seam Fastball FC: Cutter
CU: Curveball SL: Slider CH: Changeup
FS: Splitter SI: Sinker


Wednesday, 7:05 PM – Raul Valdes

Valdes is a reliever up from Triple-A to start tonight’s game because the Phillies do not have a viable starting pitcher after playing a doubleheader on Sunday. Valdes is making just his second career start, with the first coming late in 2010 with the Mets. I am not sure how long the Phillies plan for him to go, but it’s worth noting that he has mostly pitched multiple innings at a time this year. As you might expect from a reliever, Valdes has a pretty limited repertoire. He throws a two-seam fastball with decent movement in the 87-89 MPH range, and has not managed to cross the 90 MPH barrier while in the big leagues. His primary secondary offering is a slurvy pitch in the upper 70’s. He also mixes in an occasional mid 70’s changeup, a pitch he has used infrequently out of the pen. Valdes does not have the flashiest stuff, but he misses a lot of bats and has been very effective in both the Philadelphia and Triple-A bullpens this season.

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