Measuring Bat Speed with Statcast

Thanks to the excellent baseballsavant.com, some Statcast data is finally starting to accumulate. Go over there, look through their stats. It’s good stuff. I’m focusing on their batted ball leaderboard. Looking at players which Statcast has seen for at least 20 at-bats, here are Braves hitters ranked by the average speed of the ball when leaving the bat.

A.J. Pierzynski‘s offensive resurgence is likely tied to his impressive bat speed early in the year. (Photo: Brett Davis/USA Today Sports)
Player Average Speed (MPH) Max Min
Freddie Freeman 92.08 109 31
Cameron Maybin 91.97 109 61
A.J. Pierzynski 91.07 109 61
Jonny Gomes 89.73 106 64
Kelly Johnson 89.58 107 45
Christian Bethancourt 88.00 106 69
Andrelton Simmons 87.43 109 41
Nick Markakis 87.23 105 36
Chris Johnson 86.77 111 61
Jace Peterson 85.23 103 54
Eric Young Jr. 84.47 111 41
Alberto Callaspo 81.45 100 37

It’s sorted by average speed off the bat, which tells you more about how consistently a player can mesh bad speed with good contact. Seeing Freeman at the top is no surprise there. I think a better measure of pure bat speed might be the max column, which sees Chris Johnson and Eric Young Jr at the top. Young’s might be a bit of an outlier, but CJ is no surprise.

As more data continues to trickle in from Statcast, the more we can learn about the players and the process that leads to the results. It’s an exciting time to be a baseball fan, and data such as batted ball exit speed might just be the tip of the iceberg.

All data courtesy of www.baseballsavant.com

About Brent Blackwell 171 Articles
Brent Blackwell also writes for College Football By The Numbers at www.cfbtn.com.

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