So swinging early in counts became the stathead ideal — or, at least, batter temperament lost its ideological associations. The Astros, considered by many to be the most “analytical” team, saw the third-fewest pitches per plate appearance this year. “If [an opposing] pitcher throws 70, 80, 90 pitches, who cares? We don’t,” said Tampa Bay Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier in 2015, after the patient Rays suddenly flipped to the aggressive Rays. “Hit pitches that you’re supposed to hit. Hit fastballs early in the count, no matter if he’s thrown five pitches this inning and you’re the third hitter. If you make an out and the pitcher throws seven pitches, so what.”
The result was that we lost something to count, and the middle of games lost just that little bit of nuance.
At age 28, Weeden became the oldest player ever selected in the first round of the NFL draft.
What happened? Weeden had a few bright spots in Cleveland but is remembered more for horrific moments that personified the franchise’s futility, like getting trapped under the American Flag during the pregame warm-up of his NFL debut (he proceeded to post a 5.1 quarterback rating in that loss to Philadelphia) and a backhanded interception he threw against Detroit. Weeden was recently signed by Tennessee following a hamstring injury to Marcus Mariota and could become a free agent again once the Titans’ starting QB is healthy enough to play again.
As has been referenced already in this piece, the Cardinals have significant struggles running the ball. As a result, no quarterback has thrown the ball more this season than Carson Palmer, who is on pace for 726.4 attempts this season. That bodes well for Brown, who has chewed up 37 targets over the past four weeks. Volume makes him a weekly flex consideration in deeper leagues.