Capuano does not, but he reminds me in this of two other pitchers I just did work on: Ubaldo Jimenez (Article coming up on Monday) and Mike Pelfrey (Amazin Avenue Annual).
Jimenez is a particularly instructive case, in which the splits weren’t so extreme till this year. My theory from looking at Jimenez is that against same-handed batters, location doesn’t matter for two-seamers (or ordinary fastballs) in regards to getting ground balls as much…the pitch will be good sinkers vs. those batters.
But against opposite-handed batters, we don’t see the same thing…In order to get ground balls, the pitches need be low. For Jimenez, he has shifted his location of fastballs to opposite-handed batters from low and middle in 08 to high and middle in 09 to high and away in 2010 (Similar in a way to Capuano this year from a quick look at texasleaguers). With this came the dramatic splits.
As I read the article, the first thing that entered my mind was the cut of his fastball. I was going to offer some theoretical hypothesis as to how that works, but I much prefer garik’s research and data.