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. Click here for a general guide to pitch types and classifications. Graphs are courtesy of Brooks Baseball and The Hardball Times , unless otherwise specified. Statistics are courtesy of FanGraphs .
Friday, 8:05 PM – Jordan Lyles
The 21-year-old Lyles throws his four-seam fastball around 91-92 MPH and touches 94 at times, a slight improvement over his 2011 velocity. His sinker comes in at a similar speed with good downward movement. He has gone to the sinker more frequently this year, but it has become more hittable in the process. He is missing far fewer bats with the pitch in 2012, although he is getting a few more ground balls with it. Lyles’ 81-83 MPH changeup shows decent arm-side movement, but has not been very effective this season. He has cut down on his usage of the change, opting for the sinker more frequently against lefties. He also throws a sharp 77-80 MPH curveball with good downward break. The curve is another pitch that has been very easy to put in play this year, but it has been extremely difficult to get in the air. His 85-88 MPH cutter resembles a slider and has been his best swing-and-miss pitch in 2012. After posting a respectable strikeout rate in his first season, Lyles has struggled to punch out hitters this year.