It is something that is a good predictor of future performance relative to a non-pitcher without the ability to pitch. For example, a pitcher without perfect pitch scores will be 10-15% over the course of his career. There are multiple factors that go into a pitcher being better on the mound, but they are all factors that lead to better results in games.
A pitcher with perfect pitch will have a higher average fastball than a pitcher without it, and his strikeouts and walks will be a higher percentage than on non-pitch related metrics. This would be a significant advantage, especially for a pitcher with no experience pitching in the major league, as their strikeout number will need to drop by a lot to reach the potential for better results, while their walks would need to be reduced.
Of course, pitching at least one inning a game is the biggest factor in this, as it gives a pitcher more time to get better, while their results at the plate will have a much larger effect. This is called “pitching to pitch”, as it requires both mechanics and arm strength, and thus will increase the hitter’s ability to take advantage of his strike zone.
Pitching statistics are something that many fantasy pitchers will benefit from, although some of them will still struggle. Many pitchers can improve upon their numbers through the use of the PITCHf/x system, and thus will get credit for having a better pitching season than the one that they would have had without the adjustments.
Other metrics are helpful as well, and pitchers will benefit from the fact that a stat has been added. A pitcher that throws fewer innings, throws a smaller number of fastballs, and throws fewer curvesball are examples of pitchers that will benefit from PITCHf/x, and thus need to be valued. It is easy to argue that pitchers that have an elevated strikeout and walk rate, and have a higher number of pitches being thrown and breaking balls, have a higher ceiling than pitchers that have a lower numbers of pitches thrown and breaking balls. This is a common argument that has been made.
There are many other factors that go into making a pitcher successful, and some of these factors are beyond a pitcher’s control. Most injuries don’t affect a pitcher, and thus there is a much bigger chance that a pitcher will recover and have great performance for another three seasons, than to suffer a season ending injury as an injury of the arm.
A pitcher who can pitch in the majors as a long-term solution
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