We’re in a new era for baseball where more information is available at our fingertips, and in front of our eyes, than ever before. So many stats are out there to help you shape a story and help you understand what’s going on just a little bit better. For the Los Angeles Dodgers, they added one to their scoreboard this offseason.
The Dodgers became just the second team in baseball, and the first one in the National League, to put exit velocity readings onto the scoreboard. You’ve heard exit velocity mentioned many times on here and on twitter, usually by me, and they help tell a story of how hard a ball was hit by a player. It’s fun data.
Now, in baseball’s booming information age, the velocity of a pitch seems as quaint as a transistor radio. The data can still be found on the main video board at Dodger Stadium, but it’s been joined by a graphic showing something called “speed off bat” — a novice translation of exit velocity for each ball in play.
Exit velocity is one of the statistics that is starting to get out there more and more. The harder you hit the ball, the likelier it is to be a hit. For instance, Joc Pederson has an average exit velocity of 96.43 this season, good for 11th best in baseball among players with at least 10 balls put into play. He has a .467 BABIP.
With exit velocity becoming a bigger deal, it’s kind of cool that the Dodgers and Dodger Stadium have started to broadcast it on the scoreboard. The players don’t seem to mind, the fans find it kind of informative, and it’s just another new feature to go alongside pitch speed.