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Scouting Reports from Brooks Baseball.
Sonny Gray: Sonny Gray has thrown 15,318 pitches that have been tracked by the PITCHf/x system between 2013 and 2019, including pitches thrown in the MLB Regular Season, the MLB Postseason and Spring Training. In 2019, he has relied primarily on his Fourseam Fastball (94mph) and Curve (82mph), also mixing in a Slider (85mph) and Sinker (93mph). He also rarely throws a Change (90mph) and Cutter (93mph).
His fourseam fastball generates a high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' fourseamers, has much less armside movement than typical and has essentially average velo. His curve is a real worm killer that generates an extreme number of groundballs compared to other pitchers' curves, has sweeping glove-side movement, is much harder than usual and has a sharp downward bite. His slider sweeps across the zone and has exceptional depth. His sinker generates an extremely high number of swings & misses compared to other pitchers' sinkers, has less armside run than typical and results in somewhat more groundballs compared to other pitchers' sinkers. His change is thrown extremely hard, is basically never swung at and missed compared to other pitchers' changeups and generates a very high amount of groundballs compared to other pitchers' changeups. His cutter is basically never swung at and missed compared to other pitchers' cutters, is blazing fast and is an extreme flyball pitch compared to other pitchers' cutters.
Sean's Note: The Yankees basically dumped Gray on the Reds after his disastrous run in the Bronx. Unlike Roark, Sonny gets most of his outs on the ground (56% in 2019) with his power sinker. His strikeouts are up and his homer rate is down from his Yankee stint, more in line with his Oakland numbers. Fellow right handed hitters actually hit for a higher average off him than lefties.
Sean's Note: The Cubs offense will be limited with their best hitter, Kyle Hendricks, on the bench. Anthony Rizzo is still out with a stiff back. Yu Darvish will try again to locate his fastball command. With Victor Caratini on the verge of returning from injury, this is likely Taylor Davis' last start for a while.