Dauri Moreta – .103 Opponent Batting Average On Slider
The Pittsburgh Pirates acquired Dauri Moreta from the Cincinnati Reds for Kevin Newman. Moreta was a rookie in 2022 but struggled. The right-hander pitched 38.1 innings, posting a 5.40 ERA and 5.80 FIP. But there were positives, including his 24.4% strikeout rate, 8.1% walk rate, and 1.17 WHIP. There were plenty of positives to draw from Moreta’s season that the surface numbers don’t tell you, but what I want to focus on here is his slider.
When Moreta threw his slider, he held opponents to just a .103 batting average. Now sure, batting average is far from the best indicator of success, but .103 is out of this world amazing, no matter how you spin it. But it’s not as if he gave up a ton of extra bases in the few times opponents did make contact.
Moreta’s slider also held opponents to a .207 slugging percentage and .200 wOBA, along with a 25% hard-hit rate. If you thought Stephenson’s 44.4% slider whiff rate was great, wait until you see Moreta’s. He had an even greater 48.9% rate. That made it the 28th hardest slider to make contact within 2022.
Like with Stephenson, the Pittsburgh Pirates can take advantage of this by simply having Moreta throw his slider more. Moreta’s sinker ran him into a ton of trouble in 2022. It’s either a pitch he should work on immensely or drop entirely. If he does decide to drop it entirely, his slider should become one of his most-used pitches in 2023. There’s no questioning that it was one of the best of its kind during his rookie campaign.