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Thread: Nelson Figueroa, Puerto Rico eliminate U.S. from WBC

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    Default Nelson Figueroa, Puerto Rico eliminate U.S. from WBC

    Nelson Figueroa, Puerto Rico eliminate U.S. from WBC

    The last time Nelson Figueroa won a major-league start was October 3, 2010 as a member of the Houston Astros against the Chicago Cubs.

    Figueroa’s line in Friday’s win that sent Puerto Rico to the semifinals and knocked out the United States, shared a similarity with that game- six innings, no runs allowed.

    How did Figueroa, who did not pitch in the majors last season, stymie the United States hitters?

    Here are a few key points.

    • He threw 57 of 82 pitches for strikes (70 percent). That’s a better strike rate than he had in any of his 16 starts in 2010 or 2011. He threw 59 percent of pitches for strikes in eight appearances two seasons ago.

    • He got eight outs on the ground, and three outs in the air. That’s a contrast to how he typically gets outs. Over the last two seasons, Figueroa’s groundouts-air outs ratio is just below a 50-50 split.

    • He retired the leadoff hitter in five of the six innings. That’s something Figueroa has done well throughout his career. Opponents have a .288 on-base percentage leading off an inning against Figueroa since his major-league career began in 2000. That’s 36 points below the major-league average.

    • Figueroa had a very effective slider. He allowed both hits against the pitch, but got 11 outs with it (including Ryan Braun’s first-inning double play).

    Figueroa had difficulty retiring hitters with the slider in his last MLB season. Opponents had a .395 OBP against it in his eight appearances
    Last edited by Fibroso; 03-16-2013 at 12:40 PM.

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