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« Chase Utley vs. Madison Bumgarner | Main | Cole Hamels and the Change-Up to RHB »

Moving Lee

Cliff Lee played with batters minds Monday night, and no where did it show up better than on his second inning strikeout of Alex Rodriguez.  The following graphic shows how Lee's pitches to right-handed batters moved during game three.  Note that the movement is from where the ball reaches the plane of the plate, not from the center of the plate.


Cliff Lee pitch movement vs. RHB, 2010 ALCS Game 3

Lee's pitches either moved away from right-handers as they reached the plate, or down and in.  In Alex's at bat, pitches four and five both had movement away.  Both started out over the plate and moved away.  Pitch six, however, started out a bit away.  After seeing the previous two pitches, Alex responded by assuming it would break away for a ball.  Instead, it broke in and down for the third strike, Rodriguez starting for the dugout before the ump rung him up.  It's a classic example of establishing a pattern, then pitching against that pattern to fool a hitter.

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