Chad Green headed to the minors early in the season and made an adjustment, holding his glove up by his head when he comes set as opposed to letting it hang down by his belt. According to Green, this adjustment gave him more balance and control. Prior to the stint in the minors Green allowed 14 earned runs in 7.2 innings. Following the adjustment, he allowed 18 earned runs over his next 61.1 innings. We’re now two years removed from the magical 17.1% SwStr% on Green’s fastball. The velocity on his fastball remained consistent from 2018, but the BB% and BABIP were up significantly.
Green lost the feel for his slider in the 2018 season, as he only threw the pitch in the zone 24% of the time and didn’t get batters to chase the pitch outside of the zone. 2019 saw Green regain the feel for the pitch and it became an asset as opposed to a liability. The slider got swinging strikes at a career high 16% rate and got batters to chase outside the zone at a 33% rate.
This is Green’s moneymaker, and it carries elite or near-elite rates for a fastball thrown with such volume (1,086): 13.0% swinging-strike, 61.5% zone and 28.5% chase rates. If he bumped that last number over 30%, there’d be no quibble there. He also lost a bit of movement, though it’s still above-average. In any case, it checked in at an incredibly valuable 19.1 pVal.
Though Green tossed over 100 fewer sliders last year than in ’17, he added a significant amount of bend to his breaker and picked up two ticks of velocity on it. Still, he was probably onto something, since it sported unimpressive swinging-strike and chase rates, barely found the zone (24.2%) and tumbled to a -6.8 pVal. He also gave up a .267 ISO on it. If hitters got to Green, this is how they did it.
As a reliever, Green didn’t go to his changeup much last year at just 36 offerings. It featured below-average horizontal movement but added drop—though it carried putrid swinging-strike and chase rates. It doesn’t look like much will change with this one in ’19.