Shoemaker threw his curveball just 10 total times last year (2.4% usage), and just eight times (1.6% usage) in 2018. There’s not much to see here, as it’s not an appreciable part of his arsenal.
Shoemaker’s fastball velocity dipped a little this past season to 90.5 mph (91.3 mph in 2018). It’s not a particularly lively fastball, well below average in both spin (18th percentile) and velocity (16th percentile). Featured up in the zone noticeably more, the four-seamer was hit hard, allowing a .380 wOBA (.369 xwOBA) to opposing hitters.
Injuries limited Shoemaker to just 28.2 IP this past season. But in that time we saw him lean a little more on the splitter, throwing it 32.6% of the time (27.9% in 2018). It showed an outstanding chase rate of 55.9% while generating whiffs at an excellent 43.2% clip (26.6% swinging-strike rate).
Shoemaker cut down on his slider usage a bit this past season to 17.7% (23.4% in 2018). While he was able to get strikes throwing it in the zone at an impressive 52.7% clip, it wasn’t much of a swing-and-miss pitch, inducing whiffs at just a 25.7% rate.
Shoemaker’s primary weapon in his arsenal is his sinker which sits at a velocity of 91 mph. The pitch has been consistently poor putting up a negative pVal each year of his career. It has never generated a whiff rate over 5% in a season and was as low as 1.2% this past season.
Shoemaker throws a solid splitter that sits in the mid-80s range, and gets an outstanding 22% whiff rate. The pitch has consistently put up a positive pVal year over year, which makes it all the more strange that Shoemaker nearly completely eliminated the pitch from his arsenal. If he increases the use of his splitter in 2019, he can improve his stats across the board.
Although it had a negative pVal this past season, Shoemaker’s slider was good at generating whiffs (18.6%) and chases outside the zone (41.4%). This wasn’t enough to keep hitters off base however, as they batted .360 against the pitch last season.
In the 10 plate appearances that featured Shoemaker’s fastball last season, only one ended in a hit. That small sample is not enough to overshadow the fact that none of those balls in play were grounders and that only 1 in 10 pitches out of the zone were swung at by opposing hitters