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2020 The Arms

Discussion in 'Georgia Tech Baseball' started by GTNavyNuke, Nov 11, 2019.

  1. GTNavyNuke

    GTNavyNuke Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    Since we lost the vast majority of our experience in starters Connor Thomas, Xzavion Curry and Amos Willingham plus stopper English, it’s easy to say things are going to be worse. But we have 24 potential pitchers coming out of the fall. Too many for me to keep track of so I did the attached pdf and seems like far far more pitchers than we have had before.

    Given our lack of experience, I guess for a rough start and then hopefully domination as the season goes on. A big part of that hope is Borrell but also the sheer depth. Some won’t make the roster and some will be injured; there are always injuries given how hard these guys are throwing. But the sheer number and potential talent makes me think that we’ll be ok; especially if Borrell manages them and we don’t overuse pitchers. I hope we go more to the MLB model and pull guys sooner.

    I ranked the pitchers based on my guessed impact from a variety of sources:
    • the order pitched against USC and Samford, the attached column “Played USCe or Sam” lists which inning they pitched in,
    • summer stats and White & Gold game notes in the Notes column, and
    • comments from people who have watched on this site and D1 Baseball. Aaron Fitt at D1 is really high on our potential.
    As to starters and relievers, that is hard to guess. I guess the top 7 in performance will be:

    Jonathan Hughes - weekend starter
    Cort Roedig - weekend starter
    Zachary Maxwell - weekend starter
    Andy Archer - reliever
    Luke Bartnicki - reliever
    Walker Barlow - mid week moving to weekend relief
    Jake Brace - mid week moving to weekend relief

    All I really know is that what I have here will not be right as too many things will change in the 3 months to opening day. Let’s also not lose sight that we have 4 pitchers currently committed in 2020 and 7 in 2021 some of whom are ranked as top 100 players. That will also change as some will not be able to refuse the MLB draft and others will go elsewhere for playing time.

    The future is bright …… it’ll be interesting to see how the potential is developed this year. Please feel free to comment as I’ll keep my spreadsheet updated as significant stuff happens. 95 days to opening pitch!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. CINCYMETJACKET

    CINCYMETJACKET Helluva Engineer

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    279
    Great summary. I'm extremely excited about Maxwell, having been drafted by the Yankees and us now having the Yankees minor league pitching coordinator as our pitching coach. I suspect he has a little bit of knowledge about what Zachary has to do to make him MLB worthy.
     
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  3. FredJacket

    FredJacket Helluva Engineer

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    @eokerholm Placing this here... but really response to your excellent rundown on the pitching lab "to be" in 2021.

    Want to pick your brain... get opinion on something. I basically understand the "finished product" re the lab as you described, at least conceptually. I'd be curious what of those analytic capabilities can be (or are) in place today without a dedicated indoor building/facility? And do you happen to know or have a guess as to when Ga Tech had no pitching analytic capabilities to speak of? I would define "no analytic capabilities" as using a radar gun for pitch speed, charting pitches, and human eyeballs (i.e. a coach just watching). Things I've seen DBo tweet like spin rate, arm slot/release point (?...my term), velocity, location.. I'd consider actual analytic capabilities.
     
  4. JacketOff

    JacketOff Helluva Engineer

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    488
    Maybe I could offer some insight here.

    GT installed the Trackman system at RCS last spring. That basically tracks everything that happens on the field, from pitch speed, exit velocity, player movement speed, even balls and strikes. It’s also what was used to put the velocities on the scoreboard in game. Ramsey and Jaffe used this data quite a bit in their game plans for opposing pitchers, as well as helping our own guys fix things in their approaches and swings. Howell was a lot more conservative as far as data comes. Pitchers would occasionally throw bullpens with the Rhapsodo system set up, (edit: Rhapsodo is essentially the same as Trackman, but it’s more portable and only tracks ball data, not player data. So velo, spin rate, release point are all there.) but the data acquired from that never really went into a game plan, unless he tried to use that stuff to call pitches. DBo seems to have a focus on “pitch shaping” and trying to develop sequences based on the data. That means looking at where release points are and how pitches “tunnel” each other to determine how a pitcher will be effective in game. Most schools have some sort of system like this in place as well, but it’s not really the data itself that’s effective, it’s knowing how to use the data to your advantage.

    The pitching lab that’s on the way will have the existing technology as well, but will also have the ability to motion track players and see where there may be liabilities in movement at. There are very few schools that have a system like that, and they’re way more common at places like Driveline, Cressey Sports, and Florida Baseball Ranch. I know Wake Forest built one very recently, maybe even last year. I’m sure there are others that have one on the way, but getting the jump on competition will be very useful in recruiting. It’s hard to describe how much detail these “labs” allow you to view mechanics and ball flight with. I would suggest looking at Youtube videos on existing pitching labs to try and get a grasp on the whole thing.
     
  5. FredJacket

    FredJacket Helluva Engineer

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    Thank you! Good stuff.
     
  6. eokerholm

    eokerholm Helluva Engineer

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    JacketOff, Yes VERY GOOD STUFF!!

    The cool part of DBo and his toys is he has this stuff portable. He has a hand held camera that records all that and gives him spin rates, axis, efficiency, etc. That is why he gets a following at the various events he goes to and said he gets a lot of hitting coaches following him as he's looking at pitchers and the other guys the batters.

    The pitching lab allows tweaking of each players capabilities, motion/release, finger placements, etc. and accentuates them. He's able to take a guy with less speed and give him better efficiency and spin rates to do more with the ball.
    It was a very fun conversation with him regarding starting at the plate and what the batter sees and working back to the mound and what is thrown and how.
    I thought it was very cool the way he mentioned they're not there to completely change someones mechanics and arm slot like other programs. He's recruiting elite arms, and they got that way, their way and he is here to build on that and take it up a notch.

    I mentioned that Christian's pitching coach was talking about picking up a 5th pitch, a sinker, this off season and spring and what he thought of that. He already throws FB, Change, Cutter/Slider and a Curve. DBo said based on Christian's metrics and high efficiencies and the way he naturally spins the ball it won't "Sink" as most do because he's so efficient and it would slide. Something they could use but said that they would work with him on other pitches that leverage and rely on how he currently throws and spins. I thought that was really telling of his capabilities. He was also super excited when he heard and got to see him dunking. He said his "brain smiled" when Christian told him his vertical is 34". He was doing all the force translations and such.

    He's going to have fun working individually with each of our pitchers and really take them to the next level and bring great things to the program. You can see that in the metrics and improvements to them that he's posted already in the short time he's worked with the existing group. He definitely knows his craft and what he's doing and the word is out. It's going to be awesome!

    It is going to be really exciting to be with this program and Christian is super excited about working with DBo and the rest of the team and coaches. An incredible honor and opportunity we don't take lightly.
    Very much looking forward to getting on campus. He might come early in the summer of 2021 and take a few classes to get ahead academically. Jury is still out on that one....
     
  7. GTNavyNuke

    GTNavyNuke Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    Great stuff! One thing I didn't follow is how you can use the metrics for an opposing pitcher in game planning unless you have previous data on him. Are people sharing that data?

    A question about these capabilities. Is it available during the game for hitters to see what the pitcher is doing? When I watch (a little) MLB, the players seem to be watching with their own eyes. Tablets for them to break down the pitcher's setup slow-mo would seem to be helpful between plays. Or is it a case of "see ball, hit ball" is better than thinking?
     
  8. JacketOff

    JacketOff Helluva Engineer

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    488
    Ah I forgot to mention that. Most teams have the Trackman system installed at their home fields, and most also subscribe to a program called Synergy I believe. It basically allows teams to share all of their Trackman data to the system in exchange for all of their opponents’ data. You basically give up your own info for the other teams’ info. The data is used to see what pitches pitchers throw in certain counts, strike percentages, velocities, tendencies, and what not. You may think it’s weird to sacrifice your own data for the sake of getting everyone else’s, but that same data is open and available at the MLB level to all teams so it really doesn’t change much.

    As far as using it for in game adjustments, that’s pretty limited. I actually don’t know if it’s legal at the college level to have things like tablets in the dugouts. I don’t know why it would be illegal, but I’m just not sure. Most teams will have a TV monitor somewhere near the dugout, either in the locker room or weight room, that has the game feed on. So you could get some video feedback but Trackman data isn’t updated until after the game is over. So you wouldn’t be able to really get anything for that. All pitches are charted by hand during games though, so that information would be available, and the scouting reports taken from the Synergy data are printed out in the dugouts as well.
     
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  9. eokerholm

    eokerholm Helluva Engineer

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    Yep, from what we heard at UVA and others schools, they all have impressive video rooms, and cameras and trackman throughout the stadium. They look for tells, and pitching idiosyncrasies, etc. They're able to study previous games, etc and such and like mentioned above in game variation or adjustment is limited. It's more scouting report and game prep.
     
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  10. CINCYMETJACKET

    CINCYMETJACKET Helluva Engineer

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    279
    I'm extremely excited to hear this! From what I've heard in the past, granted from hearsay and not from the source, our staff in the past has tried to change pitchers deliveries to match what they think they should be. And we've had a lot of pitchers that have been lights out in HS, but couldn't throw the ball over the plate when they were given the chance at Tech. Coincidence???

    Definitely looking forward to the coach Borrell era to change this, and looking forward to having Christian on the flats! Go Jackets!
     
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  11. FredJacket

    FredJacket Helluva Engineer

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    I think same may have happened with hitting in past too...although offense has never really been a problem for Tech. I think Coach Ramsey gets a little credit for reversing this with Nick Wilhite last year...who showed tremendous improvement offensively as a junior.
     
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  12. CINCYMETJACKET

    CINCYMETJACKET Helluva Engineer

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    I think the recent change in hitting philosophy has been more, lets's try to get on base before we try to hit a 3 run homer with no one on...
     
  13. MWBATL

    MWBATL Helluva Engineer

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    LOL...well said!
     
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