Tracking Carlos Gomez's "Crazy Swing" | Disciples of Uecker

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To say that Carlos Gomez plays the game passionately would be an understatement. Sunday’s “dust-up” between Gomez and Gerrit Cole being the latest example of the energy and intensity Gomez brings to a game. While sites like Baseball-Reference and FanGraphs meticulously track Gomez’s on-field performance, there’s one element of Gomez’s game that doesn’t grace their statsheets – how many times does Gomez take a “crazy swing” at a pitch?

Those who regularly watch the Brewers should be familiar with what happens when Gomez takes a “crazy swing” (CS). For those who don’t, it involves Gomez taking a hack so massive that –

  • A) His helmet comes off his head

  • B) He falls to his knee(s)

  • C) Both


To fill this statistical void, I spent the weekend re-watching every swing Gomez has swung so far this season and, with the help of Baseball-Reference and MLB.TV, tracked his CS results.

By my now official count, Gomez has eight CS on the season. Five times Gomez has swung so hard that his helmet either flew or fell off his head. Twice a massive hack took him to his knee(s). And, in Philadelphia, Gomez had one glorious swing that accomplished both.

Including Sunday’s slugfest, Gomez has made 85 PA, seen 315 pitches, and swung at 169 of them. Failed bunts were not counted as swings. So, out of 169 hacks, Gomez has made a crazy swing spectacle out of eight of them.  When calculated like HR%, Gomez’s CS% (CS/all plate appearances) would be 9.4% – three percent higher than his 6.0 HR%.

In raw numbers, here’s a shortlist of things that Carlos Gomez has done less, this season, than swing himself out of his shoes –

  • Eight crazy swings
  • Six walks
  • Six called third strikes
  • Five home runs
  • Four doubles
  • Two triples
  • One ejection

And here’s a brief breakdown of how Gomez got to his current tally –

CS# Date Inning Outs(BR) Count Pitch VS. Type of Swing
8 Apr 20 1st 0(0) 1-1 Cutter* G. Cole (RHP) Helmet Off
7 Apr 18 5th 0(0) 0-0 Changeup C. Morton (RHP) Helmet Off
6 Apr 16 7th 0(0) 1-1 Curveball K. Butler (RHP) To His Knees
5 Apr 13 7th 1(0) 0-1 Changeup C. Morton (RHP) Helmet Off
4 Apr 12 5th 1(1) 0-0 Changeup E. Volquez (RHP) Helmet Off
3 Apr 10 9th 1(0) 0-1 4-Seam FB J. De Fratus (RHP) To His Knees
2 Apr 8 4th 0(0) 0-0 Changeup K. Kendrick (RHP) BOTH!!!!
1 Mar 31 3rd 2(0) 0-0 Slider J. Teheran (RHP) Helmet Off

*MLB Gameday classification. Brooks Baseball lists this pitch as a slider.

Predictably, most of Gomez’s CS occurred on off-speed or breaking pitches (7/8). All CS were within the first three pitches of the AB and never with two strikes. Smart situations to guess and go for broke. Gomez’s calculated use of an all-or-nothing swing shows that he can harness his aggressiveness. Unfortunately, Gomez didn’t show any of that restraint during Sunday’s third inning.

Gomez attracts fire because he’s also good at starting it. Currently, Gomez is hitting .312/.365/.610 with a .299 ISO and 163 wRC+. An encouraging sign that Gomez has matured into an impact player. While his love for the game is obvious and unquestionable, his passion isn’t always pretty. It can be infectious, though. So far, the Brewers are undefeated (8-0) in games that Gomez swings his heart out.

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Tell us what do you think.

  1. Tyler says: April 21, 2014

    He can do whatever he wants as long as he keeps hitting seeds!

  2. Brandon says: April 21, 2014

    Of your 8 CS AB sample size, is he more or less likely to get a hit during the AB?

    • Tom says: April 21, 2014

      Just looked them up. He’s 2 for 8 in at bats with a CS.

      This includes four strike outs, a foul out, a ground out, a single and one glorious 457 foot bomb.

  3. Manic M says: April 22, 2014

    Well, can we get a pic of the “glorious” swing against Kendrick’s changeup on Apr 8 in Philly?

    The pic exemplifying phenomenon ‘C’ was clearly against the Cubs, evidently in another season . . .

    Playful approach to advanced video scouting, dovetailing with the notion that GoGo’s a smarter player than he gets credit for . . . well done, fun read.

    • Adam Wieser says: April 22, 2014

      Couldn’t find a pic of Gomez’s C swing in Philly. My only option would be to take a screen grab from my account, which would have violated their copyright. Will continue to search and keep an eye out in hopes that one surfaces.

      Thanks for reading!

  4. Jeff says: April 22, 2014

    I actually think the CS works in Gomez’ favor, psychologically. You can see it on the opposing pitcher’s face over and over again: “This guy is a chump that swings out of his shoes. I’ll toss another off-speed pitch up there and get on the ESPN highlights tonight for my big K.” And the pitcher often does get on the highlights. For the wrong reasons.

  5. Matt T says: April 22, 2014

    Were any of his homerun swings (this year or previous) also CS? He hit’s homeruns with a lower % than CS, so it would stand to reason that, since the mechanics are similar, some of his homeruns were CS. I find it hard to believe that the only difference between losing his balance and running the bases was simply lucky contact.


  6. Anne says: April 26, 2014

    So my question is, what percentage of CS are preceded by bat-sniffing?

    • Adam Wieser says: April 26, 2014

      Great question! Wish I’d thought about looking for it. The bat-sniff is definitely another crucial part of Gomez’s game.

      I’m still watching every Gomez AB and logging what happens. Will note when I see it happen from here on.


Websites mentioned my entry.

  1. Carlos Gomez and Controlled Aggression | Disciples of Uecker

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