McHugh drops the changeup in on occasion (4% usage) and does so at 84 mph with a litle arm-side run. It didn’t get many whiffs in 2019, but it was good for getting groundballs.
McHugh’s curve has bat-missing two-plane movement in the mid-70s when it’s at its best. He only featured it 8% of the time in 2019, which is probably becuase it wasn’t very effective, considering it didn’t generate many whiffs.
McHugh’s fastball just isn’t very good at this point in his career. His four-seamer sits just below 91 mph with slight arm-side run, and that’s not going to get it done these days, which is why he only throws it 34% of the time. That, and the 10% barrel rate it gives up.
Collin McHugh mixes in his cutter at about 12%. It averaged 87 mph this year with late bite when it was on. In 2019, it was one of his better pitches, allowing a barrel rate of 3.6% with a whiff rate just below average.
The slider is McHugh’s go-to pitch. He dials it up 43% of the time, and it works well as a putaway pitch when he’s able to bury it to the glove side. It’s a little slow these days, sitting a touch below 80 mph, but it still gets a lot of break, looking slurvy at times with the depth it gets.
In 2018, McHugh reached the second-highest max velocity average of his career on his four-seam fastball, hitting 92.2 mph. That speed increase led to the highest K rate he has ever reached on the pitch at 24.4%.
A pitch that was added to McHugh’s repertoire in 2015 has become a mainstay, especially due to the massive movement he’s gained in the past year: a total of 4.4 inches! While also seeing a cutter that had a similar arm action, hitters had a tough time identifying this deadly slider, which led to a near 50% K rate in 2018.
The argument can be made that this is McHugh’s best pitch, as it has a 22.8% swinging-strike rate, no home runs allowed, and a measly .217 batting average against.
McHugh’s cutter is mainly a setup pitch. It is his only offering that doesn’t have a K rate over 20%. He does not generate a lot of swinging strikes on it, and batters hit .263 off the pitch. However, it has only been taken deep once in the past two years, which is down from a gory 23 times from 2014 to 2016!