Not really that into Kahnle's profile. I was trying to talk myself into it for a minute, though lol
I'll just assume we were bidding up the Yankees.
I guess I should explain...
Kahnle is short, stocky & oft-injured since his last really good season - 2017.
In 2017 when he had that really good season with the White Sox & Yankees, he was throwing 63.4% fastballs with an average speed of 97.8 & he was basically similarly effective across his 3 main pitches (changeup 21.8%, slider 11.6%).
Since then, his fastball speed has slowed to 95.5 mph & he hasn't throw a slider since 2019.
Last year he basically became a 1 pitch pitcher - that pitch being a very effective 89.8 mph changeup which he threw on 76.4% of pitches to great results. The rest of his pitches were fastballs, where he got lit up.
Very small sample size alert - opponents had a .094 slg% against his changeup last year & 1.143 against his fastball...in tinier sample size news, in 2020 it was .000 against his changeup & 2.000 against his fastball. Even back in 2019, though, his last full season, opponents had a .203 slg% against his changeup & .553 against his fastball. 2018, the last year he threw more fastballs than changeups, it was .158 to .660.
I'm not sure where you build on that to get back to a guy who has a chance to play high leverage innings, especially in the playoffs. It's still a fine deal considering the market & maybe there's a chance he builds back some of his fastball now that he is further removed from injury, but yeah, would have had to talk myself into it if we signed him.
For comparison purposes, Chris Martin threw six
different types of pitches last year. His 4-seem fastball, cutter & splitter were all rather effective. His sinker was ok, & his curveball & slider kind of sucked. The solution the Dodgers arrived upon when he got there seems obvious - but they cut down the curveball & slider in return for more fastball & cutter & let him focus on his most effective pitches & he had great results. That seems far more repeatable of an improvement to me than transitioning to only changeups, and should lead to a higher chance of playoff effectiveness because it's a harder range of pitches to adjust for. I also kind of love the never walking anyone thing...