Daily Notes: The Actual Daisuke Matsuzaka to Pitch Today

Table of Contents
Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of the Daily Notes.

1. The Actual Daisuke Matsuzaka to Pitch Today
2. Today’s MLB.TV Free Game
3. Today’s Complete Schedule

The Actual Daisuke Matsuzaka to Pitch Today
The Purpose of This Post
The purpose of this post is to announce how former Seibu and Boston right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka will start for the New York Nationals tonight (Friday) at 7:10pm ET.

Regarding Matsuzaka, Where He’s Been
Since his last major-league appearance on October 3rd, 2012, against the New York Americans (box), the 32-year-old Matsuzaka appears to have been: granted free agency by Boston (October 29), signed by Cleveland (February 13), released by Cleveland (March 24), signed again by Cleveland (March 26), released again by Cleveland (August 20), and signed by New York (August 22).

Regarding Matsuzaka, What He’s Done
With Triple-A Columbus this year, Matsuzaka was entirely serviceable, if not necessarily impressive, recording strikeout and walk rates of 22.0% and 9.1%, respectively, and a 3.96 FIP over 19 starts and 103.1 innings.

Regarding Matsuzaka, His Velocity Now
According to a source close to the situation and also close to Newsday’s Marc Carig, it would appear, Matsuzaka’s fastball sat at 87-91 mph during a recent start with Columbus.

Regarding Matsuzaka, His Velocity Then
Here, per PITCHf/x, are Matsuzaka’s average fastball velocities from 2007 to -12 with Boston:

Year Velo
2007 92.4
2008 91.9
2009 91.0
2010 92.1
2011 90.0
2012 90.7
Avg. 91.7

Regarding Matsuzaka, His Velocity Then-Then
Here’s an animated GIF of a 19-year-old Matsuzaka throwing a fastball at 155 km/h (96 mph) in his NPB debut with Seibu in 1999:

Dice K Fast

Action Footage: Matsuzaka’s Curve or Slider
Here’s footage from Matsuzaka’s most recent start, on August 19 against Baltimore affiliate Norfolk, of the right-hander throwing a slider or curve* to Eric Thames for a called strike:

Dice Thames CU Called 1st

Action Footage: Matsuzaka’s Changeup, Probably
Here’s footage from later in that same plate appearance — in this case, of what appears to be Matsuzaka’s changeup for a strikeout:

Dice Thames CH SS K 1st

*Per Brooks Baseball, Matsuzaka didn’t really throw a curve at all in 2012. That said, this pitch appears to have more vertical movement than one might generally expect from a slider proper.

Today’s MLB.TV Free Game
Toronto at Houston | 20:10 ET
Todd Redmond (43.1 IP, 104 xFIP-, 0.5 WAR) faces Jordan Lyles (109.1 IP, 105 xFIP-, 1.0 WAR). Of note regarding Houston: over the last 30 days, the club has produced the sixth-best home-run rate as a team, at 2.9%.

Readers’ Preferred Broadcast: Houston Radio, Perhaps?

Today’s Complete Schedule
Here’s the complete schedule for all of today’s games, with our very proprietary watchability (NERD) scores for each one. Pitching probables and game times aggregated from MLB.com and RotoWire. The average NERD Game Score for today is 5.7.

Note: the following table is entirely sortable.


Away   SP Tm. Gm. Tm. SP   Home Time
Wade Miley AZ 6 3 6 0 8 PHI Cole Hamels 19:05
Samuel Deduno MIN 3 4 4 7 3 CLE Ubaldo Jimenez 19:05
Dan Straily OAK 5 6 5 9 3 BAL Bud Norris* 19:05
Jhoulys Chacin COL 5 8 5 1 4 MIA Tom Koehler 19:10
Doug Fister DET 7 7 7 7 8 NYN D. Matsuzaka* 19:10
Yovani Gallardo MIL 3 3 5 3 9 CIN Homer Bailey 19:10
Hiroki Kuroda NYA 5 3 5 10 5 TB Chris Archer 19:10
Martin Perez TEX 7 3 7 2 10 CHA Chris Sale 20:10
Todd Redmond TOR 4 6 5 4 5 HOU Jordan Lyles 20:10
Gio Gonzalez WAS 7 3 5 7 2 KC Bruce Chen 20:10
Kris Medlen ATL 6 8 7 3 9 STL A. Wainwright 20:15
Garrett Richards LAA 8 8 8 4 9 SEA Felix Hernandez 22:10
John Lackey BOS 7 9 6 3 5 LAN Ricky Nolasco 22:10
Edwin Jackson CHN 4 5 4 6 3 SD Edinson Volquez 22:10
Charlie Morton PIT 7 6 7 5 7 SF M. Bumgarner 22:15

To learn how Pitcher and Team NERD Scores are calculated, click here.
To learn how Game NERD Scores are calculated, click here.
* = Fewer than 20 IP, NERD at discretion of very handsome author.



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Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Matthew
Member
Member
2 years 10 months ago

Where is the gif of the gyroball ?

tz
Guest
tz
2 years 10 months ago

Last gyroball I saw was from a Greek street vendor in Baltimore. Offered the same fillings as in their gyros, but wrapped up in grape leaves as an alternative for calorie-conscious folks.

Wasn’t half bad.

Aggie E
Guest
Aggie E
2 years 10 months ago

Yu Darvish>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Dice-K

Josh M
Guest
Josh M
2 years 10 months ago

Good job, good effort.

MDL
Member
MDL
2 years 10 months ago

Well that’s a bold assertion.

I don't care what anyone
Guest
I don't care what anyone
2 years 10 months ago

Moreso this:

Yu Darvish>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Dice-K

FeslenR
Guest
FeslenR
2 years 10 months ago

I ate it.

DragonAsh
Member
DragonAsh
2 years 10 months ago

Obligatory gyro linkage:
http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/eticket/story?page=gyroballsearch

I saw Matsuzaka pitch in Japan when he was in high school. His stuff was filthy, filthy, nasty filth. He could have been an outstanding MLB pitcher – in fact, I personally think he could have won a Cy Young at some point if he had stayed healthy. Instead, as has always been the case in Japan, he was ridiculously over-used by his high school coach. At age 17, at Japan’s national summer baseball tournament, he threw 767 pitches in six games over nine days. That includes a ridiculous stretch of 535 pitches in *four days*:

3rd round (19 Aug): 148 pitches in a complete-game shut out.
Quarter-finals (20 Aug): 250 pitches over 17 innings. 250!
Semi-finals (21 Aug): 15 pitches in the 9th inning, gets the win (team came back from down 0-6 in the 8th to win 7-6)
Finals (22 Aug): 122 pitches in a ho-hum no-hitter.

He played a full season of pro ball in Japan at the age of 18. Pitch counts routinely in the 150-170s. Got hurt for the first time when he was 21, and by the time he got to the US at the age of 27 or so, when he should have been in the prime of his career, he was either hurt or barely league average. In six years in boston, reached 200 innings only once, averaged only 70 innings the last four years.

In Japan, baseball, like all high school club activities, are year-round: in other words, essentially no off-season. In Japan, you either try to be the best or die trying; if you aren’t the best and didn’t die trying, you didn’t try hard enough.

The risk posed to young pitchers’ arms in Japan got some attention earlier this year when ESPN carried an outstanding article on Anraku, a young pitcher that threw 772 pitches in five games (including 232 pitches in a 13-inning complete game win).

When 772 pitches isn’t enough: Tomohiro Anraku is the future of Japanese baseball
http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/9452014/pitcher-tomohiro-anraku-future-japanese-baseball-espn-magazine

KSSoxFan
Guest
KSSoxFan
2 years 10 months ago

Who else thinks seeing pitchers throw 155 is way better than 96?

Sidd Finch
Guest
Sidd Finch
2 years 10 months ago

155 is not bad for a changeup.

Bartolo Colon
Guest
Bartolo Colon
2 years 10 months ago

I love seeing 145 on the metric radar gun almost as much as I love seeing 145 on my metric bathroom scale.

David
Guest
David
2 years 10 months ago

You mean the New York Mets?

hans
Guest
hans
2 years 10 months ago

Eh, who care’s at this point.

Josh M
Guest
Josh M
2 years 10 months ago

You fail.

Leighton
Guest
Leighton
2 years 10 months ago

Had to give him a discretionary 8 NERD, just to throw off the 7/7/7/7 in the rest of the game. How selfish.

Jonathan
Guest
Jonathan
2 years 10 months ago

948 pitches in a 5 game span is…I don’t know. It’s something crazy. Way too many pitches…

S. Urista
Guest
S. Urista
2 years 10 months ago

948 pitches in 5 games is insanity. Just to put that in perspective: If we took the top 50 pitchers in terms of highest average number of pitches thrown per game, minimum 9 starts, C.J. Wilson is top of the list, with an average of 111 pitches per game. Darvish is second (110), followed by Sale (108.8), Verlander (108.7) and Shields (108.2). The top 50 combined average 103.3.

948 pitches in 5 games is 189.6 pitches per game. Looking at the top 50 list above, it’d take the average pitcher over 9 games to get that pitch count. With a five-man rotation, no days off and no rain outs, that’s a minimum 45 days – over six weeks. Now add in days off, schedules being moved around, rain-outs and such, and essentially we’re talking 948 pitches over two months.

Those 948 pitches in five games? Yeah, that was a 9-day span. The last 533 pitches were thrown over four consecutive days.

Bread n Mustard
Guest
Bread n Mustard
2 years 10 months ago

How has his arm not fallen off yet?

JR
Guest
JR
2 years 10 months ago

Dice-K’s line tonight

5IP, 6H, 5R, 1BB, 4Ks. Cabrera and Hunter both touched him for homeruns.

S. Urista
Guest
S. Urista
2 years 10 months ago

Well – there’s no shame in giving up HRs to Cabrera for sure, and Hunter’s been great this year. Just 1 BB is actually somewhat encouraging.

Gyre
Guest
Gyre
2 years 10 months ago

Matsuzaka, outside of a bad inning, was impressive in the later going. I watched (along with the batter) several curves come floating in for strikes. Then I was pissed that Baltimore had not taken a gamble on him. So at least he made the list of pitchers to watch next time out.

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