2012 Fastball Velocities

» 15 November 2012 » In npb »

Let’s take a look at the hardest and softest throwers in NPB over the last season.

+------------+-----------+------------+-----------+----------+
| l_name_en  | f_name_en | pitcher_id | velo_kmph | velo_mph |
+------------+-----------+------------+-----------+----------+
| Mickolio   | Kam       |        634 |    149.47 |    93.42 |
| Kawahara   | Hiroyuki  |        662 |    149.36 |    93.35 |
| Mathieson  | Scott     |        652 |    148.96 |    93.10 |
| Figaro     | Alfredo   |        567 |    148.60 |    92.87 |
| Masui      | Hirotoshi |        487 |    148.59 |    92.87 |
| Castro     | Angel     |        665 |    148.54 |    92.83 |
| Yamaguchi  | Shun      |        206 |    148.17 |    92.61 |
| Zarate     | Robert    |        680 |    148.06 |    92.54 |
| Falkenborg | Brian     |        195 |    147.70 |    92.31 |
| Molleken   | Dustin    |        678 |    147.51 |    92.20 |
+------------+-----------+------------+-----------+----------+

Somewhat surprisingly, Mathieson isn’t the first name on the list. He got off to a slow start and missed time with an injury, but threw all 10 of the 10 hardest fastballs this year. Of the top 50 fastest pitches this year, Mathieson and Mickolio threw 49, with Yamaguchi sneaking on to the list at 50.

Kawahara, Castro and Zarate all threw fewer than 50 total pitches at the ichi-gun level in 2012, but I left them on because I think the numbers shown here are reasonably reflective of their abilities.

Now, on to the slowest velocities of 2012.

+-------------+-----------+------------+-----------+----------+
| l_name_en   | f_name_en | pitcher_id | velo_kmph | velo_mph |
+-------------+-----------+------------+-----------+----------+
| Watanabe    | Shunsuke  |        288 |    117.94 |    73.71 |
| Kobayashi   | Masa      |        635 |    126.93 |    79.33 |
| Makita      | Kazuhisa  |        571 |    128.20 |    80.13 |
| Takeda      | Masaru    |        235 |    128.50 |    80.31 |
| Shimoyanagi | Tsuyoshi  |        261 |    128.74 |    80.46 |
| Hoashi      | Kazuyuki  |        168 |    130.15 |    81.35 |
| Kawauchi    | Takaya    |        664 |    131.16 |    81.97 |
| Koishi      | Hirotaka  |        655 |    131.59 |    82.24 |
| Ohshima     | Takayuki  |        273 |    131.67 |    82.29 |
| Matsunaga   | Hironori  |        313 |    132.45 |    82.78 |
+-------------+-----------+------------+-----------+----------+

It’s no surprise to see submariner Watanabe leading this list by a wide margin. Sidearming lefty specialist Kobayashi beat out submariner Makita for the second spot, so the unorthodox arm angle demographic is well-represented here. Every other pitcher on this list is left-handed.

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