RESEARCH: Do Pitchers Who are Behind in the Count Get Hit Harder?

When a pitcher is behind in the count, it’s a less than ideal situation. The batter is closer to walking than striking out. Also, the hitter can wait on their pitch to hit. So do hitters make better contact when the pitcher "must throw strikes"?

First, the key is to strip out as many other variables as possible (notably walks and strikeouts) and just get the batted ball effects. For that reason, I analyzed BABIP (batting average on balls in play) and SLGcon (slugging percentage on contact).

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  For more information about the terms used in this article, see our Glossary Primer.