Which is the better pitch: an 87-mph fastball on the outside corner or 96 down the middle?
So, what did I turn up with this analysis? Well, keeping in mind the sample size and other caveats previous mentioned, I think I've learned that
1. fastballs outside don't depend much (if at all) on speed for their effectiveness;
2. conversely, inside fastballs are more effective the harder they are thrown (this one I already knew);
3. most of the observed effect appears to come from home runs: outside pitches are rarely hit for homers and when they are, a fast pitch is as likely to be hit out of the park as a slow one;
4. a pitch thrown hard is more susceptible to the ump's bad call than a soft toss.