Welcome back, Jon Lieber. I remember you well. A lot of innings, and even a couple Cy Young votes. Getting you for Brant Brown - that was awesome.
Now he's back, one year, $3.5 million plus $4 million in incentives. This says a few things, some or all of which may be true. Or none.
- Marquis is on his way out - with the Cubs picking up most of his contract
- Dempster is back to the bullpen, but not as closer
- Marshall to Baltimore
- Gallagher to Baltimore
- No one seriously considered Kevin Hart for a spot
Who knows, the next move will be the most telling.
For now, I'm left wondering what the guy throws. A lot of ground ball outs, if I remember correctly....
I ran a couple passes thru the one and only one game of PITCHf/x data we have for Lieber. y=55, n=104
First, eyeballing it....
Ummm, OK. Not sure what I see here - perhaps 3 pitches. Perhaps 10.
Tried another old friend, k-means cluster analysis, nothing satisfying there.
Using an even older friend, I went to my book shelf and pulled out The Neyer/James Guide to Pitchers and found this, on page 280, right between Ted Lewis and Kerry Ligtenberg.
1. Sinking Fastball 2. Slider 3. Change
They cite The Scouting Notebook 2000.
Checked one new friend, the PITCHf/x tool by Josh Kalk - his technique finds two pitches. Scroll down at the link to see the table with the pitches. For your immediate viewing pleasure, here's the pitch location chart, also available at the link.
Once the season gets going, we'll revisit Lieber and see what his 2008 stuff looks like to a computer and a bunch of cameras.