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Dodgers: A Visual of Clayton Kershaw’s Pitch Dynamics and Spin rate



In a perfect world, the Dodgers would be 4-0 and by now and Clayton Kershaw would have picked up his sixth opening day win for Los Angeles. But we’re instead remaining hopeful that there will even be a season in 2020.

While the best-case scenario looks to be about June for baseball to return, there’s no reason why we can’t remain excited about an incredible club the Dodgers have on paper. And that incredible team’s pitching staff would have once again been led by none other than Clayton Kershaw.

Doom and gloom setup aside (apologies for that), let’s get into what you came here to see… motion graphics!

User TCSportsFan on Reddit posted a fantastic graphic of Kershaw’s pitch dynamics and spin rate.

Clayton Kershaw’s Pitch Dynamics from Dodgers

On the fastball, that spin rate of 2,477 would put Kersh in the top 30-35 range of Major League pitchers with a minimum of 1,000 4-seamers thrown since 2017. However, his average spin rate is closer to 2,400 over those three seasons. Moreover, the slider places him in the top 100, and surprisingly — for being known as much as he is for having a devastating curveball — that curve spin rate of 2,463 is about middle of the pack at best for Uncle Charlies tracked since 2017.

Where the hope and change would come for Clayton and company would be in his research with the fine folks at Driveline Baseball. Of course, as mentioned earlier this spring, Kershaw is amongst the Dodgers that took a trip up to Kent, Washington this offseason to have his pitch efficiency analyzed. The early returns were promising for the 32-year-old, but now it’s in sit and wait mode for the lefty.

Final Thoughts

Admittedly, I’m not a huge analytics nerd, but I do enjoy them and think they 100% make baseball better. But I ultimately just really liked the Reddit graphic and felt inclined to share with you fine folks.

NEXT: Clayton Kershaw Working to Blend Old School and Analytics

Written by Clint Pasillas

Clint is the lead editor of Dodgers Nation, and a host and analyst on Dodgers Nation's own Blue Heaven podcast live stream.

He's been writing, blogging, and podcasting Dodgers since about 2008. He was there for Nomar, Greg Maddux, and Blake DeWitt, and he'll be there for Walker Buehler, Alex Verdugo, Dustin May, and any Dodgers of the future.

He's also a sandwich enthusiast, a consummate athlete, and a friend.

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