Averaging around 89 mph, Canning’s changeup pairs below-average drop with above-average break. He largely featured this pitch against left handed batters, tossing it 19.7% of the time against them. It was also his least effective secondary pitch, with just a 13.3% whiff rate and a .347 wOBA. This definitely contributed to his ERA being a full run higher against lefties, and makes this pitch’s success something to watch as he develops.
Perhaps because of its below average drop, Canning’s curveball had a knack for generating called strikes, with a 43.7% zone rate and just a 47.2% Z-swing rate. And, most importantly, it got Canning his best results, with batters earning just a 29 wRC+. It could, however, generate more misses—its 13.4% SwStr rate and 92.2% Z-contact rate leave something to be desired—but its .243 BABIP was supported by a 40% infield fly-ball rate and just a 15.2% line-drive rate.
Canning’s fastball averaged 94.1 mph, touching 96.6 with well above average drop and break. Batters also feasted on it to the tune of a .356 wOBA. Scouts project this pitch to improve and be among his better pitches, so don’t expect his 42.3% usage to drop—but given its O-swing (20.9%) and SwStr rate (8.7%), real gains, rather than just better luck, will need to happen.
His go-to secondary pitch, Canning’s slider combined a 21.7% SwStr rate with a 40% zone rate. It only missed being a money pitch by virtue of its 37.6% O-swing rate—and all despite below average break and drop. The pitch did well when placed on the outside corner, almost exclusively giving up hits when left at least middle height and in the zone, and may have been better than its 2.5 pVAL because of an elevated .319 BABIP.