Next Level Player of the Week
Although CC Sabathia allowed eight hitters to reach base Saturday, he was effective once they were on. Sabathia held the Rockies to 2-for-16 hitting with runners on base. He did it by relying more on his slider. With the bases empty, Sabathia threw mostly fastballs, mixing in his slider just 18 percent of the time. With runners on, he dropped his fastball usage and threw a higher percentage of sliders.
Chris Heisey hit each of his three home runs off a different pitch Wednesday, one each off a cutter, a curveball and a slider. Six of Heisey's 16 career homers have come off sliders, more than any other pitch, and his .352 batting average in at-bats ending in sliders is the second-highest in baseball since his MLB debut May 3 of last season.
Marlins hitters were 0-for-15 in at-bats ending with Hernandez's fastball Friday, the first start this season in which he has allowed less than two hits off the pitch. The 15 fruitless at-bats against the fastball is tied for the third-most from any pitcher this season. Hernandez also mixed in his changeup effectively, as Marlins hitters were 0-for-4 in at-bats ending with the change, all strikeouts.
Jake Peavy dominated in his first career relief appearance Saturday. Even after a 104-pitch effort Wednesday, Peavy came out of the bullpen Saturday throwing gas. His average fastball was 93.0 mph, his fastest average heater over the past two-plus seasons. Peavy threw one fastball 95.1 mph, his fastest pitch since April 26, 2009. The Nationals were 0-for-8 against Peavy's fastball with five strikeouts.
SAMSUNG NEXT LEVEL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
The Samsung Next Level Player of the Week pits four athletes with the most impressive statistical performances against each other.