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 Post subject: Martin's framing
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:31 am 
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and now some data to support those of us raving about Martin's ability to catch the ball.

http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-pitt ... -receiver/

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's framing
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 1:07 pm 
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In honor of the recently departed BD, another interesting look at pitch framing....

http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/927 ... ina-others

Quote:
Not every baseball lifer is as open-minded as Bailey, but the Astros, the Yankees, the Rays, and any other teams that have already started targeting and trying to develop good framers are only the vanguard. The market for catchers with superior receiving skills will grow more crowded as long as it looks like an area where clubs can get an edge. As Russell Martin says, it's "a lot easier to teach somebody how to frame a pitch than it would be to teach them how to hit homers and drive in runs."


and...

Quote:
If you take the Astros' plan, and Manwaring's comment about copycats, to their logical conclusion, then at some point in the not-too-distant future, almost every team — save, perhaps, for a few with gifted offensive catchers for whom framing aptitude is less paramount — could have someone squatting behind the plate and stealing extra strikes. But sweeping changes to the sport rarely come without unforeseen consequences. That kind of mass movement toward catchers with strong receiving skills would upset the delicate balance between batter and pitcher; if you think baseball's strikeout rates are high now, wait until the first wave of Stepford framers arrives. If umpires start to see nothing but good receivers, they might adjust their zones, much like a hitter adjusts to a pitch he's shown too often. Then the framing bubble would burst, as previous advantages have when every organization discovered them.

It's also possible that a greater awareness of framing could hasten the end of umpiring as we know it. The discovery of framing has opened up a new field of research for authors and aspiring sabermetricians, but what's good for baseball writers isn't always good for baseball. Even if the intent isn't to criticize umpires, it's impossible to write about framing without drawing some attention to the fact that the rulebook strike zone is more of an abstract concept than something that exists in the wild. The more attention that the catcher's ability to influence the strike zone receives, the more likely it is that Major League Baseball will act to automate it. And if the human element goes, replaced by robo umps, then framing will go with it.


Of course, I'm all for using technology to call balls and strikes, so that may be the single best reason to increase interest in pitch framing.


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 Post subject: Re: Martin's framing
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 1:17 pm 
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It was amazing 2 nights ago to see the number of calls that Estrada was getting off the outside corner with Lucroy (a prominent pitch framer) compared to the lack of calls AJ was getting with Fort receiving. That said, Fort has issues defensively that extend far beyond his lack of an ability to frame a pitch well.

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's framing
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 1:24 pm 
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"stepford umps"... love it.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Martin's framing
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 3:53 pm 
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A common theme in pitch framing articles and/or discussions involves the notion that catcher are "stealing strikes" on pitches that should be called balls. While that may be technically true, it is far more accurate that framing involves the act of catching a borderline pitch in such a fashion that makes the pitch look as much like a strike as possible. Further, pitch framing is not solely about "stealing strikes;" it is also about "preserving strikes." A poorly caught borderline (but in the strike zone) pitch can lead to a strike being given away simply because it leaves an impression that the ball was outside the strike zone. It is a particular issue on pitches with a lot of movement.

Unlike any other fielding position which calls for fielding the ball ahead of you with "soft hands" and having a fair amount of "give" when receiveing the ball, a catcher who is good at framing a pitch has "hard hands" and has little to no movement in his glove when receiving a pitch. He does not "move" his glove from out of the strike zone into the strike zone, he catches the ball in a manner which gives the best impression that the pitch is a strike. It ofent involves rolling the wrist as you catch the pitch but you have to have enough stregth to hold the pitch exactly where you caught it and not allow the force of the pitch to move the glove outside of the strike zone. I spent many hours trying to build up wrist strength by rolling a wooden dowel attached by string to a laundry detergent bottle full of sand.

If the DH existed for catchers, I may have had a career . . . I played a mean defense behind the plate . . . just didn't have the bat speed - not even close.

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