Trackman Traits - Pitching: 2024 RHP Grayson Weikel (Souderton Area HS)


Zach Guth
PA/NY Advanced Scout

 

Welcome back to Trackman Traits. In this piece we will be dissecting the numbers the Trackman produces and the effect they can have on a pitcher's approach. Below there will be definitions of each category that we believe to be the most important for a young arm to keep in mind as well as breaking down an arm and giving suggestions on how they can improve their game. Keep in mind, in some categories it is better to be further away from average even if the numbers are wavering on below average. 

FASTBALL VELOCITY

Fastball velocity doesn't go much deeper than just looking at the numbers and comparing them to the graphic below! Fastball velocity complements just about all of the other metrics that are measured. If you throw hard, it makes all your other pitches/metrics even better.

FASTBALL SPIN RATE

Spin rate is a measurement that if you are below average or above average, you can pitch with more room for error. On the other hand, if you are average you should try to throw in the bottom half of the zone with exceptional command. High spin fastballs profile as one that is frequently described as having "late life". Low spin fastballs tend to profile as a fastball that has heavy feel to it. Pitch movement is still dependent on spin direction of the pitch but Trackman does not have that metric displayed on profiles. 


BAUER UNITS

Bauer Units are an easier way of determining how useful the spin numbers are compared to the velocity. We can calculate this metric by taking average spin rate and dividing it by average velocity. Bauer Units are useful because we can have a case of two pitchers with the same spin numbers, ex. 2200 RPM, but one pitcher throws 90 MPH and the other throws 83 MPH. The pitcher throwing 90 MPH with 2200 spin is not as impressive as the pitcher throwing 83 MPH with the same spin. Typically, we would tell the harder throwing pitcher to throw up in the zone purely off his velocity and his high spin, but because his Bauer Units would equate to around 24 that would be only 1 unit off of average (23), therefore he would want to hammer the bottom of the zone. On the other side, the pitcher throwing 83 MPH has a Bauer Unit measurement of 26 which is incredibly impressive. This would allow him to throw up in the zone even though his velocity is not blow away type numbers because he produces above average spin with that slated velocity. 

FASTBALL INDUCED VERTICAL BREAK

As far as deception and importance goes, fast induced vertical break (IVB) may be the most important. Induced vertical break is not what is sounds. IVB simply means the pitch is "breaking" upward from the average level a pitch falls from release to home plate. This is a stat that you want to stay away from being average at. Fortunately, this can be tweaked slightly depending on release height. To put it simply, the higher number =  more "rise" the pitch has compared to average. Lower number = more depth the pitch has to it. 

CURVEBALL SPIN RATE

Spin rate on curveballs is pretty simple: higher spin = nastier stuff. There are some ways to manipulate spin numbers slightly but for the most part spin is spin. At the moment, there are no well known ways to change your spin in a big way. Spin not only dictates how sharp your curveball is, but it can also aid in keeping hitters honest by having similar rotation matching that of your fastball. 

 

Grayson Weikel

Class of 2024 / RHP

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2024
  • Primary Position: RHP
    Secondary Position: OF
  • High School: Souderton Area
    State: PA
  • Summer Team: PA Shockers
  • Height: 5-11
    Weight: 175lbs
  • Bat/Throw: L/R

Scouting Report

7/30/20

 

Physical: Lean and projectable 5-foot-11, 165-pound frame with projectability in the build. 7.67 runner in the 60-yard dash. 
Offensively: LHH. Begins with a tall, slightly open stance as the hands showed quick wiggle out in front of the chest. Utilized a leg hang stride coupled with a move deep to the shoulder for the load in order to initiate a flat barrel path into the hitting zone. Used long levers to create plenty of pop at the front of the plate but could get long on the path at times creating negative attack angles in the box, demonstrated a pull-side approach during batting practice with a feel for the lower half while hitting into a stiff front side. Recorded a peak bat-exit velocity of 89 mph per Trackman Baseball featuring a 62% groundball rate and 315 maximum batted ball distance. When he got the ball in the air and stayed short to the baseball, good things happened. 
Defensively: The outfielder featured a medium-low setup with ability to move quickly in any direction with the first step, natural instincts in space with active footwork playing downhill through the baseball, fielded off of the left side on the approach, stayed behind the baseball in the air with regularity, accurate high ¾ arm-slot with a medium arm circle on throws towards the plate / high level arm strength. OF - 84 mph 
Pitching: RHP - Worked from the stretch only off of the left side of the rubber, medium leg lift with slight hip coil at the top of the stack / repeatability in the mechanics, gets downhill with solid backside leg drive and a fluid, high ¾ arm-slot with whip in the arm circle. FB ranged from 81-83 impressing with an upwards of 2186 spin per Trackman Baseball, countered with a quality 66-67 mph breaker with 11/5 shape and late depth causing deception at the plate.


Videos

(7/30/20)

 


 

Fastball Breakdown

Velocity: When evaluating a young arm like Weikel, it is important to remember the graduating class. Weikel is a '24 so he has just about 3 years and some change to take his game to a new level. Topping out at 81 MPH still puts him into the top 50% among high school arms...as a freshman. With his clean mechanics and easy follow through, Weikel's ceiling is much higher than staying among the top 50%. The ball seemingly jumps out of his hand and appears to be thrown harder than just 81 MPH. 

Spin Rate: Grayson seems to have the ability to spin the ball naturally as he comes in around 2045 RPM on average and 2186 RPM at maximum. While his velo is around the top 50%, his spin can teeter on the top 25-10% for high school arms. This gives him the ability to use his fastball as if it were a couple MPH harder than it really is. 

Bauer Units: Once again we dive into another case where a pitcher has a Bauer Unit measurement way above the average. With a max of 27 it means that for his velocity, he is spinning the ball far better than he technically should be from a numbers standpoint. This means that his fastball plays up to a higher velo and it's a slight indication that he could be seeing a jump in velo. Hopefully when this spring rolls around, Weikel will be experiencing that increase in velo and he can over power hitters with his high spin heater. 

Induced Vertical Break: When a pitcher has lower velo than his spin rate indicates, it tends to make the IVB numbers low. This is the case because the spin is causing a downward effect on the ball due to gravity and the air around it. When the velo is not quite there, it makes it harder for the ball to travel on the desired path for longer due to the effects caused by the high spin. What is interesting through is Weikel displays the ability to induce higher IVB numbers than he should. His FB plays up with some hop to it late into its journey to the plate. This could all be due to his release and the way the ball is spinning out of his hand. By just the eye test, it appears his is nearly at 12 o'clock or even a little 1:15 tilt. Tilt is something to be explained at a later date because it can be a little more complex to understand.

Curveball Breakdown

Spin Rate: Right now, we can tell that the spin isn't quite dialed in yet on the curveball. At the moment, Weikel presents more of a sweepy type of pitch than a hammer breaking ball but if it isn't broke don't fix it! With around 1836 RPM on the curveball that falls in the top 75% for high school breaking balls. As said many times before when evaluating young breaking balls that don't quite have spin yet...be patient. Finding a true breaking ball is sometimes a long journey than takes a lot of tweaking to figure out. 

Horizontal/Vertical Break When we look at horizontal movement (HM) you want to think about it on a number line scale from the pitcher's view to home. At pitcher's mound, the measurement would be zero if someone threw a pitch that didn't move to either side. If a pitch moves to the left, it is a negative number and if a pitch moves to the right it would be a positive number. Weikel induces about 4.2" of vertical depth at best, but can indues 6" of movement to his glove side. One thing we do know for a fact is that velocity is the best complement to breaking ball movement. Typically the harder you can throw your breaking pitches, the more they spin which in turn induces more break. 




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UPCOMING EVENTS

SHOWCASE STATE DATE LOCATION
2021 Preseason All-State - South/Central PA 02/06 Iron Horse Sports Complex
Super 60 Pro Showcase NATIONAL 02/07 MOSH Performance Center
2021 Preseason All-State - Pittsburgh (3PM Session) PA 02/07 All American Fieldhouse
2021 Preseason All-State - Pittsburgh (9AM Session) PA 02/07 All American Fieldhouse
2021 Northeast ProCase (2021 Grads Only) PA 02/13 Liberty Sports Arena
2021 Preseason All-State - Erie PA 02/13 Erie Premier Sports
2021 Preseason All-State - North/Central PA 02/14 Liberty Sports Arena
2021 Preseason All-State - East (11AM Session) PA 02/27 Keystone State Baseball Academy
2021 Preseason All-State East (3PM Session) PA 02/27 Keystone State Baseball Academy
2021 JR PA State Games Trials - Central PA 03/06 Liberty Sports Arena
2021 JR PA State Games Trials - East PA 03/14 Keystone State Baseball Academy
2021 JR PA State Games Trials - West PA 03/14 All American Fieldhouse