In Japanese professional baseball, the first player that comes to mind when it comes to fastball is definitely Roki Sasaki (21. Chiba Lotte).
Sasaki stood shoulder to shoulder with Otani Shohei (LA Angels), who is said to have reached the realm of the gods by shooting 165 km, the highest speed among Japanese players this season.
Although the speed of a fastball does not explain all the power of a fastball, it is clear that a fastball over 160km has special power.
However, in Japanese professional baseball, there is a pitcher who throws a more powerful fastball than Sasaki.
Katsuki Azuma (27) of the Yokohama DeNA Baystars is the main character.
Azuma, who will wear the Yokohama uniform with the 1st pick in the 2017 draft, is showing his best performance this season with his skills in full bloom.
In particular, the power of his fastball is doubling.
His fastball has a 0.140 batting average. He has a lower fastball batting average than Sasaki, who has a 0.171.
His velocity is nearly 10km behind Sasaki’s. Last year, Azuma’s average fastball speed was 142.9 km. His highest speed since his pro debut was 152 km.
He’s a lefty, so he could be a bit more of a plus for velocity, but it’s definitely not Sasaki’s level.
However, he is taking the ball boldly and getting good results.
He has a fastball usage rate of 48%, which is not small, and the cut fastball, which is the same fastball family, also accounts for a large portion at 17%.메이저놀이터
Although he lacks the speed of Sasaki, it can be said that he has been upgraded to a pitcher who can overwhelm batters with just a fastball thanks to the movement and rotation of the ball tip.
As you can see from his fastball batting average, Azuma’s fastball has a special advantage.
Sasaki’s fastball is the focus of many people’s eyes, but there are also pitchers who are doing their part with slower balls. In particular, I am just envious of the thick layer of players that there are pitchers who are showing strength in the fastball.