Roark’s changeup is a steady offering in terms of limiting walks, but his strikeout rate has fluctuated through the years. Sometimes it’s been a sturdy offering, while other times it’s been tee’d off against: much like Roark himself.
Though it’s been better in previous years, Roark’s curveball was still a decent pitch in 2019. A significant drop in O-Swing% (40% to 25%) suggests it wasn’t nearly as deceptive last season.
Roark throws both a traditional four-seamer and a sinker, with slight variance between the two. Combined, he gave up 17 dingers off his heaters alone.
Roark threw his cut fastball over 100 times for the first time in his career last season, with limited effectiveness. He might do well to rethink its usage in 2020.
A major plus pitch for Roark in 2018, his slider came off the rails last season. The wOBA against the pitch jumped from .179 to .380 in a calendar year.
Continuing Roark’s trend of allowing more fly balls is his primary pitch. He gained a bit more control on his two-seamer but gave up 10% less grounders.
Roark’s four-seamer is not his primary fastball. He still throws it the second-most. Roark gave up more fly balls with this pitch than previous years but was able to get slightly more whiffs, despite a dip in velocity.
Using his curve almost interchangeably with his slider, Roark kept hitters off balance striking out over 40% of batters with it. Despite this success, he allowed a few more fly balls and home runs against.
Roark’s slider took a step forward in 2018. He used it more as a strikeout pitch but also was able to reduce extra-base hits against.
Usually one of his better offspeed pitches, Roark’s changeup was more predictable to hitters than usual. They took balls more often and made contact on 11% more swings in and out of the zone.
Roark rarely uses his cutter as he should. He struggled to find the zone and batters made plenty of contact when they swung.