Nationals: The Big Four’s best weapons

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What has been the biggest debacle on Obama's watch?

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Stephen Strasburg

The pitch: curveball.

Velocity: 80.1 mph. Frequency: 13% (48 pitches).

Movement: 12.8 inches horizontal, -47.5 inches vertical.

When thrown: 0-0 6%, 0-2 12%, 2-0 N/A.

Outcomes: 42% ball, 26% called strike, 19% in play, 7% foul, 7% swinging strike.

Value/100 pitches: 4.02.

Back story: Strasburg’s world-beating curveball originated in high school: “When I got to college the pitching coach there showed me that I should try and throw it like a fastball. That was one of the mental barriers that I had growing up, I always think, ‘I need to throw it like a football,’ or something like that but it’s better when I throw it like a fastball, just the way you grip it, it comes off a lot sharper, and it’s a little bit more deceptive to the hitter. …

“It’s different [now]. I think that’s mainly because of the seams. In college the seams are much bigger so that changes the way it breaks. I definitely had a bigger, harder break in college with those seams, but now it’s a little bit, I’d say it’s tighter but it doesn’t break as much.”

Jordan Zimmermann

The pitch: four-seam fastball.

Velocity: 94 mph. Frequency: 60% (1456 pitches).

Movement: -6.6 inches horizontal, -14.1 inches vertical.

When thrown: 0-0 68%, 0-2 66%, 2-0 77%.

Outcomes: 32% ball, 22% foul, 19% called strike, 18% in play, 7% swinging strike.

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