Charlie Morton’s Fastball and the Nastiest Pitches from the 2019 AL Wild Card
Every morning, we review the nastiest pitches from the previous day’s games in glorious high-definition GIFs. Don’t forget to vote for your favorite pitch and check back this weekend to see if it will be in contention for the Nastiest Pitches of the Season GIF Tournament. Did we miss your favorite pitch? Send us a tweet next time @PitcherList, and we’ll GIF it up and give you a shoutout here in the article.
Charlie Morton’s Fastball
After wrapping up a spectacular 2019 campaign that saw him post career-best numbers almost across the board (3.05 ERA, 240 strikeouts, 11.1 K/9, and plenty more), Charlie Morton was called upon to kick off the Rays’ postseason. The soon-to-be 36-year-old allowed a single unearned run across five innings of work, allowing five hits and striking out four en route to a Rays victory. Morton likely won’t be available again until Game 2 or 3 of the ALDS against the Astros, and Lord knows the Rays need all the help they can get against Houston.
Jesus Luzardo’s Slider
Injuries meant that young fireballer Jesus Luzardo only saw 12 MLB innings this season (albeit very good innings), but the A’s were entirely unafraid to throw their prized rookie directly into the flames, and he more than delivered under pressure. Over his three innings of work (the most by an A’s pitcher this game), Luzardo held the Rays scoreless, striking out four. It’s a shame the A’s got bounced: I think everybody wanted to see more Luzardo action throughout the playoffs. Maybe next year.
Nick Anderson’s Fastball
Like most aspects of the Rays this year, Nick Anderson ran like a well-maintained clock in the regular season. After being traded from the Marlins, Anderson spun 23 appearances worth of 2.11 ERA ball with an absurd 17.3 K/9. The Rays saw more than enough to trust him to hold their lead in the eighth and ninth innings of the Wild Card game, and he delivered. Over 1.1 innings, Anderson struck out four while allowing just a single hit.
Sean Manaea’s Slider
Recovering from injury, Sean Manaea wasn’t able to make his 2019 debut until September, where he held a 1.21 ERA over five starts, striking out more than a batter an inning. Sadly, this dominance did not carry into the postseason, as Manaea was charged with four of the five runs that sent the Athletics home, letting up three home runs over two innings. Hopefully he doesn’t let it get to him too much: The Athletics need him badly if they want to make another playoff push next year.
Yusmeiro Petit’s Changeup
The AL leader in appearances this season, Yusmeiro Petit continued his quest for another ring in Oakland this season, logging a solid 2.71 ERA in the process, giving him a 2.86 mark over his career in Oakland. On Wednesday though, he was the second pitcher the A’s employed and let up a home run as the A’s fell to Tampa Bay 5-1.
GIF of the Night
Which was your favorite pitch? Vote below, and the winner will be featured in the Nastiest Pitches of the Season GIF Tournament.