The Pittsburgh Pirates should consider these three free agents based on the Statcast measurement sweet spot rate
The Pittsburgh Pirates need to get the ball rolling on acquiring someone. There’s still time left for them to do something, as the off-season has been much slower than the last two years. Even though they’ll probably not get one of the top names available, there are still plenty of very underrated names in the second tier of free agents left on the market. But I want to highlight some of these underrated players based on sweet spot percentage.
Sweet spot percentage is one of the statistics that Statcast created and it is based on launch angle. Baseball Savant defines the sweet spot as anywhere between 8 degrees and 32 degrees. This range is typically seen as the most ideal launch angle. Batted balls in this range produced a batting average of .598 and slugging % of 1.103 (source ). Of course, batters want a higher rate and pitchers want to keep this low. The leader in sweet spot rate for batters was Freddie Freeman at 46.1% and the leader among pitchers was Andre Pallente at 19%. The league average is around 33%.
But some hidden gems are currently free agents among this leaderboard. These are guys the Pirates should have on their radar, at the very least.