There has long been an argument that a pitcher does not need velocity to get outs. That’s true, but it does make it a whole lot easier.
How Will His Peripherals Change?
Here are some educated guesses based on sources I’ve found on the Internet:
- 86 MPH -> 90 MPH (4 MPH difference)
- 0.165 * 4 = 0.66% decrease in HR/FB (http://www.fangraphs.com/fantasy/index.php/does-fastball-velocity-influence-a-pitchers-hrfb-ratio/)
- 0.316 * 4 = 1.264 increase in K/9 (http://bezdomnybaseball.blogspot.com/2010/02/how-do-you-know-hes-unhittable.html)
- 10% reduction in FB rate (http://www.beyondtheboxscore.com/2010/12/23/1890969/ground-balls-and-pitch-speed-what-should-we-expect-to-see-from)
Now, remember, these studies aren’t perfect, but they’ll give us a baseline of improvements the pitcher can expect to see if his velocity improves. You can adjust them downwards or upwards based on your own thoughts/biases if you like.
We’ll hold his innings pitched and games started constant, even though if he got a lot better, he’d probably pitch more (and deeper into games). We’ll also hold his walks, hit batters, and intentionally walked batters constant. As such, here are his new peripherals:
24 GS, 230 FB, 24 HR (10.34% HR/FB), 50 BB, 2 IBB, 7 HBP, 141 K (8.464 K/9), 150 IP (6.25 IP/start) – 4.39 FIP
A 4.39 FIP is decent – it represents a 12.5% improvement from the year previous.