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Freshmen Free Central: Trackman Traits Top Arms


Mason McRae
PBR Virginia/DC

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The expanded usage of data, and the importance of it in regards to player development and player assesment is a legitimate, undeniable tool used by high school, college, and professional teams across the country. Today we break down some of the data from our recent Freshmen Free Central event in Richmond, VA. See which players stood out in regards to Trackman data. 

Glossary Terms Intro & Links:

Induced Vertical Break: IVB
Vertical Approach Angle: VAA 
Horizontal Break: HB
Release Speed: RS or Velo
Release Height: RH or RelHei

 

Chase Swift

Class of 2024 / LHP

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2024
  • Primary Position: LHP
    Secondary Position: OF
  • High School: Thomas Dale
    State: VA
  • Summer Team: Rise 2023/2024 16u
  • Height: 5-10
    Weight: 157lbs
  • Bat/Throw: R/L

Fastball: Swift’s fastball had the highest average IVB of the day, ranging from 23.1 to 28.3. Given his raw spin rate averaged out at 2,072 rpm it might come as a bit of a surprise, but his tilts were consistently at 11:45 and 12:00. This means he was getting almost perfect backspin on the pitch. Chase’s farthest pitch from 12:00 on the day was at 11:15, this pitch had his lowest IVB. Being able to stay around 11:45 would keep his IVB’s in the elite range for his age group. He combines the heavy backspin on his fastball with a somewhat low RH, while working from 82.1 - 83.6. This gives it an extremely flat VAA and rising illusion. His best fastball on the day came on a 12:00 pitch with 2,267 raw spin, 27.4 inches of IVB, and 5.3 RH.


Changeup: Pitchers with vertical arm-slots like Chase tend to struggle with getting HB on their changeup. But Chase is extremely good at it. He threw one of the better single pitches all day getting -18 inches of HB, and 14.8 inches of IVB on a changeup thrown at 10:15. The averages on the pitch aren’t as good as this pitch would indicate but that’s because there’s one changeup thrown at 11:15 bringing the average down. Being able to get similarly heavy side spin on the 10:15 pitch and stay around 10:15/10:30 would give him another fantastic pitch.

Slider: Chase’s slider looks more like a cutter because of its 1:15ish tilt. This gives it more VB, and less HB. He had around 5.3 inches of IVB and 2.8 inches of HB. If he shifted the tilt a few minutes to around 2:30/3:00. He’d probably be able to get a touch better movement on his slider with much less IVB, and just as much HB, if not more; but it would also drop his spin efficiency about 20% and give it more gyro spin which would give it late movement and turn it into a true slider instead of its current hybrid cutter look.



Trey Gauch

Class of 2024 / RHP

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2024
  • Primary Position: RHP
    Secondary Position: 3B
  • High School: Deep Run
    State: VA
  • Summer Team: Elite Squad 2024
  • Height: 6-2
    Weight: 160lbs
  • Bat/Throw: R/R

Fastball: Threw a heavy fastball that sat around 80 mph, touching 82 mph. Had above average spin rates for his age ranging from 1,786 - 2,115 rpm. Throwing it around 1:00, he got average IVB, and right around average HB. Gauch’s best pitches were at 12:45 when he got 20+ inches of IVB and far less HB which didn’t necessarily improve his spin efficiency but ended up creating more useful, and good movement.

Changeup: Having a changeup thrown an hour clockwise from your fastball is a recipe for success and Gauch does just that. Similar to his fastball, he gets a lot of raw movement on it which includes 14.1 inches of IVB. 17.3 inches of HB. He does an exceptional job at killing spin through pronation which helps the pitch’s shape. I think Gauch’s changeup has the most potential of his three pitches. Because he already throws it with high spin efficiency (somewhere between 85-95%). All that's left to do to optimize it is shift it a few minutes clockwise; doing this would likely get a combination of elite HB, and some tumbling action on it.

Curveball: Throws it at 7:15, making it your traditional 12-6 curveball. It gets just shy of 10 inches of vertical drop with about -7 inches of HB. He throws it somewhat hard already which enables it to play better and it also plays off the fastball quite well with a very similar release point. His current spin rate on the pitch is 1,904 rpm but that will improve as Trey matures and continues to gain velocity.



Jacob Lee

Class of 2024 / C

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2024
  • Primary Position: C
    Secondary Position: RHP
  • High School: Matoaca
    State: VA
  • Summer Team: Rise 16u Martin
  • Height: 6-1
    Weight: 180lbs
  • Bat/Throw: R/R

Fastball: Had the second lowest RH of the day at 4.42 while sitting at 84.5 mph. He threw it right around the dead zone area at 1:15/1:30, shifting it vertically to around 12:45/1:00 consistently would get him a few more inches of IVB. He was around 18.2 inches of IVB on the day which is slightly above average. Lee’s spin rates were around 2,240 rpm on the day which likely means there’s more potential for IVB. Unsurprisingly, Lee’s highest raw spin pitch of the day at: 2,454 rpm, also had his second highest IVB pitch of the day at: 21.6 inches. This pitch was also one of four pitches with 1:00 tilt. If he’s consistently around that tilt he’ll produce an extremely flat VAA for his age thanks to the following characteristics: low RH, high velo, and high IVB.

Slider: More of a slurve than a slider right now. He throws it on average at 71.9 mph getting both side and top spin. Averaging -9 inches of IVB, and -11.2 inches of HB, it has both depth and sweep at a decent speed. Because he has so much velocity at such a young age, this pitch will get outs regardless of the movement. As he progresses in age, he’ll likely want to turn his current 7:45/8:00 “slider” into more of a 7:00 true curveball, or 9:00 true slider. But as of now, it’s a great pitch that’ll get plenty of whiffs.

Changeup: Threw one changeup on the day and got more HB (14.5 inches), than IVB (12 inches) at a 1:45 tilt. It was also thrown at 79.2 mph for a strike. If he does this consistently, it’s going to be a real weapon to add onto an already impressive profile.