Sarris: Edinson Volquez and the postseason velocity bump

From SABR member Eno Sarris at FanGraphs on October 23, 2015:

Twitter was apoplectic. Drug tests were demanded. Old suspensions were being brought up. Hands were wrung. Edinson Volquez? Throwing 96s and 97s deep into his start? Where is this velocity coming from? This can’t possibly be right.

Turns out, Volquez hasn’t even added the most velocity this postseason. He’s fourth or fifth among starters, depending on your definition, and he’s not too far from the the norm that we should be bugging out. The postseason, like the debut, comes with adrenaline, and that adrenaline leads to a bump in velocity. Baseball is that simple sometimes.

 Here are the pitchers that have thrown at least 70 pitches this postseason, with their postseason and regular seasons velocities, sorted by the difference between those numbers. Fastball velocity stabilizes after three starts and is statistically meaningful after one start.

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Originally published: October 23, 2015. Last Updated: October 23, 2015.