Originally posted on The Flagrant Fan  |  Last updated 10/22/12
Ryan Vogelsong has already had a career that is worthy of a movie script. Most folks already know the story of a guy who was originally drafted by the San Francisco Giants way back in 1998, was traded to the Pirates where he pitched four ineffective seasons with that team and saw his career come to a screeching halt after the 2006 season. He would be lost to the world for four major league seasons. He tried a comeback in 2010 and the Phillies signed him and waived him. The Angels picked him up that same season but he never saw major league action. And then the Giants gave him an invite in 2011 and the rest is the stuff of legend. His 27-16 record for the Giants with an ERA around three the past two seasons is enough to make that movie. But now it turns out that he could also host a cooking show on television because he was in the Cardinals' kitchen all night as he won his second straight gem of the NLCS.



Vogelsong was so good last year that it seems silly that he might change the way he pitched in 2012. But look at these heat maps (courtesy of Fangraphs.com) on how he has pitched to right-handed batters:










The first thing you notice in the top heat map (2011) is that he lived on the outside part of the plate. Very little of his pitches were inside. While he still threw the bulk of his pitches on the outside of the plate in 2012, he threw much more inside to right-handed batters and also elevated the ball much more often.



It was this kind of change that helped him against several of the Cardinals top right-handed bats, the ones that do a lot of damage for the Cards. The first two are Allen Craig at bats, the second is against pinch-hitter, Shane Robinson and then two David Freese at bats, one of them a strikeout:





















(courtesy of Brooks Baseball)



Note: The heat maps and strikezone plots are from the catcher's perspective. The right-handed batter would be standing on the left side of the pictures.



As you can see, Vogelsong lived in the kitchen of these right-handed batters. One batter's charts that weren't shown were Yadier Molina's. Molina grounded out meekly on a first pitch fastball inside. And then he did the same later in the game after a few more pitches seen.



Vogelsong really struggled coming down the stretch in August and September. He had a 2.36 ERA in the first half but that ERA ballooned to 6.32 in August and 5.34 in September. Part of that can be seen as his BABIP against exploded in those two months. After being in the mid-.250 range for most of the season, his BABIP shot up to .365 in August and .358 in September.



And there was some trepidation about him starting in the post season the way the last two months of his season started. But he finished the regular season with a couple of good starts and pitched well against the Reds in the NLDS in his only start.



Now after his two brilliant starts in the NLCS, he has a 2-0 record with a 1.42 ERA in three post season starts with a WHIP of 0.895. To say he is having a great post season run would be a vast understatement. And it simply adds a new story line to what has already been a movie-turning career. After his work in the kitchen against the Cardinals, a cooking show on television should not be far behind.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Cubs close door on Sammy Sosa reunion after bizarre comments

Rick Pitino restrained from going after North Carolina fan

76ers trading Ersan Ilyasova to Hawks for Tiago Splitter, pick

Budapest drops 2024 Olympic bid, leaving only Los Angeles and Paris, which could ban some participants

DeMarcus Cousins was ‘praying’ for a better supporting cast with Sacramento

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Nets trading Bojan Bogdanovic to Wizards

Elliott spoke with police after 'best friend' caught with gun

Jets reportedly believe Jay Cutler can compete in AFC East

Report: 'Melo could waive no-trade clause for Clippers after season

Rivers: Paul medically cleared to play, could return Thursday

Trea Turner missed part of Nats camp Wedneday for jury duty

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

Box Score 2/22: Not everyone is happy with the new intentional walk rule

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

Box Score 2/21: It's trade heartbreak season

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win the MVP award

Teams, players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker