At times, Javier Vazquez has looked downright filthy this year, and I mean that in the positive baseball pitcher sense. He mixes several pitches, throws them all for strikes, and misses plenty of bats in the process. Last night was no exception, when he struck out the side in the first and fanned six overall in five innings, allowing just three hits and a walk.
Is Vazquez starting to get in a groove in 2009? He’s looking better in just about every start, and the chart below is one reason why. It doesn’t include last night’s numbers, but it shows how many swings he gets outside the strike zone, versus how often batters make contact on those swings. He throws about 50% of his pitches in the strike zone, so this represents half of his overall pitch total. He’s only getting better as we get into late May.