The post you are presently reading occasions the launch of a new EOB series. It's called "Leaderboarding," which is a totally made-up gerund. When we undertake leaderboarding we provide you the page-viewer with a quick look at which players or teams led all comers in certain categories during the 2013 regular season. The rub is that you're not going to see any commonplace stuff like, say, RBI, ERA or stolen base leaders. These are going to be less familair but still illuminating kinds of statistical bestowals that maybe don't get enough of our attention.
For instance, in this debut episode of Leaderboarding, we're going to count down the pitchers who in 2013 threw the most pitches that registered 100 mph or more. Lofty radar gun readings, as many a hurler has proved, aren't the sole path to pitching greatness, but they are generally indicative of a first-order fastball, which is perhaps the most fundamental element of the craft.
Let's have a look ...
It probably comes as no surprise to see Aroldis Chapman of the Reds at the top of this list. Indeed he threw more triple-digit fastballs than the second- and third- place finishers -- Kelvin Herrera of the Royals and Bruce Rondon of the Tigers -- combined. Chapman, of course, did all that in just 63 2/3 innings of work.
And speaking of throwing a high percentage of 100-mph pitches, Jose Dominguez of the Dodgers threw a mere 115 four-seamers in his 8 1/3 innings at the highest level this season, and 20 of those hit triple digits.
Also from the good folks at Brooks -- and getting back to Chapman -- the Reds' blazer threw the 11 fastest individual pitches of 2013. For those curious, this, per Pitchf/x data, is the fastest pitch of 2013 ...
That's an 0-2 fastball that clocks in at 104.81 mph, and that's the highest velo anyone flashed this past season. So, in light of the Leaderboarding topic at hand, it's fitting that that was only one of Chapman's 318 triple-digit fastballs of 2013.