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Spittin' Hairs

I'm not quite over that game, however the off-day is a nice time to relax.

One thing about Matt Garza has kept me up at nights. No, not his loading of the scapula or the anger issues, although I would feel better if it were. You see, I've been beating myself up wondering if he spits harder than he throws. As we all know he loves to spit, in fact I'm guessing he misinterpreted what "making it rain" means, because the guy is a camel on the mound.

I finally decided to use math and figure this out for myself. Garza stands 6'4" per the official site. That's roughly 76 inches, plus cleats. As we all know Garza, like most humans, spits from his mouth, which is a few inches from the top of his head. We cannot be sure on exactly how many, but I would guess between 6-9 inches separate the top of his head and the top of his mouth.

Taking  this into account Garza's most fiercest of spit flies down around 6 feet and lands within a second. I reviewed a start from my Tivo taking notes on the visible spit, and with the help from a stop watch, recorded  the time it took each to pound the mound. Happy with my sample size I plugged the numbers into Excel. After turning the numbers from feet per second (average: 12) I converted that into miles per hour. Here's a look at Garza's velocity throughout the game:


I'm a bit concerned about the velocity drop off, but it could be something as simple as not enough water intake the day before a start, or perhaps too many seeds in the dugout, soaking up his saliva. That's correctable at least.

Here's a look at how Garza's average "spitch" compares to his average pitches.


Obviously his spitch is not as fast as his other pitches, but that's to be expected. Unfortunately for Garza he's no Nolan Ryan or Joe Camel, but there's no shame in that.