In response to maxbialystock's comment:
In response to moonslav59's comment:
In response to patrickford's comment:
Well, I recall thinking Larry Bird never got a bad call go in his favor. Maybe I'm wrong. That's why the team, or the Globe, someone should document this carefully. It has been talked about. There is a perception Lester is getting squeezed.
Take a look here at the season to date Lester and Buchholtz.
Average velocity on pitches and the percentage of pitches thrown are all about the same. Lester has a very slight edge in velocity on the fastball and cut fastball. Both throw around 50% fastballs and around 25% cut fastballs. Both throw almost the exact same percentage of curveballs 14% and changeups 11%.
I'd like to see a much more intensive set of numbers. In particular I'd like to see what percentage of cut fastballs are swinging strikes, fouled off, or called balls.
Really I'd like to see someone do a real study using film just so they could tell me I'm wrong...if I'm wrong.
In any event the drop in velocity is a non-issue as far as I'm concerned.
Larry Bird got many calls in his favor.
Velocity does matter, especially when he has relied on throwing it by people for years.
I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with you--vehemently. Velocity is fool's gold if you don't mix in other pitches and don't hit your spots. Beckett's fastball in 2006, his first year in Boston, regularly hit 97 mph, and it went back out even fast because opposing batters were feasting on it. His ERA that season was slightly over 5.
Lester right now has fastball that is plenty good enough and faster than Buchholz's, but not if that's all he throws and can't hit the corners consistently. He needs a curve and especially a changeup that he can rely on and use anytime.
It seems you have contradicted yourself here, unless I have misunderstood your point.
While I agree that Velocity can be "fools gold if you don't mix in other pitches", Lester has never had an excellent 2nd pitch, let alone a third one.
Later, you state that he "needs a curve". That is supporting my position. Lester needs to re-invent himself by becomming a pitcher not a thrower. He needs a variety of pitches that will make his lower velocity fastball more effective.
It is very very rare that a pitcher regains his velocity, unless it was intially lost by an injury that heals. Lester is not likely to regain his past velocity, so yes, he needs to diversify his portfolio to be a success. Isn't that your position?