Gaviglio’s third pitch, the changeup featured excellent drop and got good batted-ball results this past season, relinquishing a tidy .191 wOBA (.240 xwOBA). It also showed an excellent 43.4% zone rate and 38.3% chase rate to go along with a very respectable 14.7% swinging-strike rate.
A distant fourth pitch, Gaviglio doesn’t throw the curveball much at all (3.6% usage rate). It features below-average movement. Gaviglio can throw it for strikes (48% zone rate), but it’s not a pitch that will get hitters to expand the zone (19.2% chase rate) or swing and miss (2% swinging-strike rate).
Gaviglio’s sinker sits at just 89.2 mph, and like most sinkers, it held batters to a low average launch angle of 7 degrees. And like most sinkers, it’s not a pitch that will get hitters to expand the zone (13.9% chase rate) or swing and miss (4% swinging-strike rate). The sinker wasn’t much of an impediment to opposing hitters, as it allowed a generous .301 batting average and .378 wOBA (.364 xwOBA).
Gaviglio upped the usage of his slider quite a bit this year, from 28.4% to 44.3%. It was a very effective pitch, returning a 40.7% chase rate, 44.9% zone rate, and 19.4% swinging-strike rate. So perhaps one of the more surprising Money Pitches of 2019.
The sinker is Gaviglio’s primary offering. Its two objectives are to get strikes and generate ground balls.The sinker was much less effective for Gaviglio in 2018 as he significantly decreased its zone percentage and saw vertical movement decrease.
The slider is Gaviglio best secondary offering and he increased its usage in 2018. Gaviglio slightly increased the horizontal movement away from right-handed batters, which generated more swings and misses along with additional offerings outside the zone. Increasing this pitch would improve Gaviglio’s repertoire for 2019.
The changeup is Gaviglio’s secondary offspeed offering. It was successful at generating ground balls and limiting damage with a .642 OPS against. Increasing the velocity differential between this pitch and the sinker could improve both pitches, as the current velocity difference between the pitches is only six mph.
Gaviglio decreased his usage of the curveball. The curveball was far less effective in 2018 at generating swings and misses and the .357 batting average against was a massive jump from 2017. Batters were not fooled by the curve, as evidenced by a 100% zone contact rate against. Gaviglio should continue to decrease the use of this pitch.