One Trick Pony My Ass: Special Roy Halladay 14 Strike Out Edition!

Roy_halladay_pitchGraphs courtesy of

These are beginning to come too easily. Then again, that’s something you should take up with a different doctor. I’m just here to spit sweet thruthisms at Pat Jordan, the NY Times writer who said the Phillies' Four Aces were one-trick ponies.

PJ would like you to believe that Roy Halladay’s success stems from nothing more than his psychic zone and sick cutter. Those things contribute, but just like his teammates, Cliff Lee and Roy Oswalt, this pony knows several tricks.

Purple dots: Peekaboo curveballs that break up to nine inches at 76 M.P.H. Ah! Where’d they go?


They dropped out of the fucking strike zone. That’s where they went.

Light blue dots: Two-seam fastballs that slice up to 15 inches backward. That’s some magic ish right there, baby.

Changeups with 15 inch tails (the yellow dots)? Mythical creatures, no doubt. Falsities. They exist, kids. Enchanting pitches that come from only the biggest and safest of hands.

Let’s compare Doc to another right-hander – say, a well above-average guy like John Lackey, who got the win for the Red Sox last night.

Note: The higher the dots are on the graph- the faster the pitch. Their position left or right indicates the ball's movement from center. Simple, yo.





Silly PJ, tricks are for aces.

While Lackey, like Lee, was a bit more consistent with the break on each pitch type, neither Lackey nor Lee had the extreme movement on their pitches, the way Doc did.

Now, let’s compare the Doctor to a true one-trick pony … Aroldis Chapman, who throws, like, ZOMG 109 M.P.H. He displayed that trick quite often last night, throwing nothing but fastballs.


Notice they don’t break? Hitters will eventually catch up to that pitch, forcing Chapman to be put out to stud… or to come up with another trick.

Halladay, on the other hand, threw five types of pitches yesterday. Three of them broke – on average – around seven or more inches in either direction. And notice how none of them are in the middle of the graph, which would indicate little to no break? Scary.

Oh goodness! Another cock-swinging horse masquerading as a harmless pony. Your move, the National League.

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11 Responses

  1. Ah, it doesn’t matter how many tricks the aces have if the closers keep falling, and the misfits who replace them fail hold onto the lead. Help us, Obi Wan Amaro. Your our only hope.

  2. For people who were confused (like me, but I’m dumb so . . . ):
    FF = Four-Seamed Fastball
    CH = Changeup
    CU = Curveball
    FC = Cutter
    FT = Two-Seamed Fastball
    In case you were wondering (but you probably weren’t, soo . . . )

  3. I dont understand all the angst against the bullpen. Herndon and Romero sucked, but they only pitched when behind. Kendrick, Baez, Madson and Contreras have been terrific.

  4. Dave, your link does nothing but prove that Halladay isn’t a one-trick pony.
    “Halladay, even with years and years of dominance, continues to tweak his game.”
    That sentence says it all. Thanks for supporting Kyle’s argument.

  5. Also dave’s link takes you to a site that has this
    “Halladay leads the league in WAR and is second in xFIP and FIP”
    Now i am no sabermetric but WTF is xFIP???

  6. Sounds like Proverbialnose knows what they’re talkin bout more than anyone else here.
    And Baez? I almost bust a nutlet when I saw that. I’d rather see Ziggy-Zaggy over him, even if he throws on the other side.

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