Crosstown series starts tonight at The Cell. Gavin Floyd is Ozzie's game one starter against Big Z.
Floyd's been a solid part of the White Sox rotation for four years now, even making ten starts back in 2007. His numbers are coming out just fine again, despite some slight changes in his pitch mix and results.
After a two year period of missed bats, Floyd has dropped back towards 2008 levels. His ground ball rate has regressed, too, but he's getting getting better calls on takes.
Taking a look at his pitch types (Fastball and sinker around 92, slider and changed around 85, curveball about 80) you'll notice a drop in sinkers in 2011, down to 6% of his selection (19,11 and 16 percent in the preceding years).
OK, so less sinkers means fewer ground balls ... but why the missed bats? Floyd is actually down on all four of his pitches in this area.
Whiff Rates by Pitch Type, 2008-2011
That's a precipitous drop.
That looks like a steady trend.
Call that one good year.
That's is more of a to-contact pitch and barely thrown this year, so wtvr.
Again, a to-contact pitch (to a lesser extent), but this makes five out of five pitches dropping whiff rate in 2011.
The resulting drop in strikeouts is offset by the drop in free passes, but, as shown above, Floyd's league/park neutral performance (ERA+) has taken a dip. Again.