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From the Dojo

How to Set Lines: MLB Spin Rate

Chris Sale

With MLB DFS, having the right data to make the right decisions on who to play in your lineups is a big aspect to be able to win consistently. TheRotoDojo MLB Cheat Sheets contain all the data you need to help you succeed.

Although it’s easy to just go with the highest ranked players, sometimes that still might not be the optimal play at certain positions. I am going to do a series of short articles that detail different aspect of the sheets and how you can benefit from them. Some of the data on the sheets are pretty familiar if you have played MLB DFS before like wOBA and ISO. But these articles will focus on the extra stuff that you won’t see with other sites.

Today’s focus will be: Krating(column Y), Crating(column Z), and Hrating(column AA).

If you have watched any MLB games this year you have probably heard the term spin rate in regards to pitchers. This is a relatively new stat that is measured for all pitches. Spin rate is a measurement that equates to the number of revolutions the ball spins as it is pitched and is measured in RPMs. Typically high-velocity pitchers carry a higher spin rate but not all. Among the highest spin rate pitchers in the game are Max Scherzer, Carl Edwards, and Andrew Bailey with over 2500 rpm on fastballs. Some high-velocity pitchers that are not high spin rate pitchers include Noah Syndergaard and Jon Gray with under 2200 rpms on fastballs. The average spin rate for MLB pitchers is 2210 rpm. The spin rate affects the movement of the pitch in typically a downward movement. There is a misconception out there in regards to movement and spin rates. In regards to fastballs, the higher the spin rate the lower the movement and conversely the lower the spin creates more vertical movement. A pitch with higher spin rate appears to be flatter or rise to a batter and is the opposite for low spin pitchers. This is also why typically a pitcher with a high spin rate is also a fly ball pitcher. Typically a batter will either hit the ball on the top part of the bat because the pitch does not drop as much. There are a few pitchers that do not fall into this category but it is rare and I will share this in a future article

So why is this important to hitters?

In MLB DFS we are trying to identify the best potential matchup for the success of batters and pitchers. In regards to spin rates, some batters have success against higher or lower spin rates. The reason for this is the plane of a batter’s swing in comparison to the movement created by the spin rate of the pitcher. This either matches up well or it doesn’t. With our MLB CHEAT SHEETS I have added Krating(strikes), Crating(contact), and Hrating(Homer). These data points measure how well the batter matches up to the pitcher’s spin rate in regards to those categories. Does it mean a batter will not homer against a pitcher that is a bad match up? Absolutely not. It WILL show you however where a batter has had success in the past against a specific spin rate. A perfect match up on any of the categories is 37.5%.

Today’s MLB SHEET Examples:

Here are batters that stand out today for potential home runs. Michael Saunders has a 37.25% Hrating against Stephen Strasburg. Typically this is not your ideal matchup against Strasburg, but Saunders has had great success in the past against the spin rate of Strasburg. By the way, Strasburg is a fly ball pitcher and Saunders has a .531 slugging against fly ball pitchers. Yasmany Tomas has a 37.20% Hrating tonight against German Marquez and also gets the benefit of Coors Field. Marquez also is a ground ball pitcher, and Tomas owns a 0.489 slugging against this kind of pitcher.

In a future article, I will discuss the effects of Coors Field in regards to spin rates and why few pitchers have success. Luckily, our MLB CHEAT SHEETS have all the data you need to find the pitchers that you can consider.

Good luck tonight everyone and bring home some of that #dojodough!!

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