Hand features some cut on his fastball which helps him get a ton of popups on it. A .375 BABIP makes the overall stat-line mediocre, but you gotta hand it to him, it deserved a better fate than it got.
Hand’s slider velocity continued its fall, down one tick to average 81.2 in 2019. Its spin rate also declined by about 100 rpm to 2474. Even so, it gained back some of the SwStr losses from 2018 to getback to 17.6% on the back a 24.3% whiff rate in the zone. Its K rate declined to 42.9%, but soft contact kept its wRC+ to 60 despite a .345 BABIP.
Hand’s slider has been a menace over the past few years. Its whiff rate fell to 15.0% in 2018, a drop from 19.0% in 2017. This was perhaps from an increased usage of the pitch in the strike zone from 39.7% to 48.2%. It allowed just a .157 average against despite its heavy usage.
The 13.4% whiff rate on Hand’s fastball is impressive. It was solid in terms of limiting hard contact, allowing just a .202 batting average and a .738 OPS. He did all of this while pounding it in the zone at a 57.4% clip.
Hand’s two-seam fastball caused problems in 2018, allowing a .415 wOBA. It still induced 67.6% ground balls, but that was not enough to overcome some big hits.