Every morning, the We Love Baseball crew reviews the Nastiest Pitches from the previous day’s games in glorious high-definition GIFs. We want to bring you the highest caliber of nastiness possible, so if you see a nasty pitch, please tell us about it. You can tweet @PitcherList to let us know and we’ll give you a shout-out here in the article if your tip makes the cut.
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Dustin May’s Fastball
We start off this post with Dustin May after another really good start. With the injuries the Dodgers have suffered to Clayton Kershaw and now Alex Wood, May has earned a spot full time in the rotation. He has taken the opportunity and ran with it, including this start where he went six innings giving up two runs (although he only struck out two). Among these strikeouts was this fastball running into Manny Machado, getting him to swing over the top of the pitch and take that off-balanced hack.
Adrian Houser’s Sinker
Adrian Houser has also made the most of his opportunity of coming over to the Brewers. Though his start on start on Monday was not his best start of 2020, he still managed to keep his ERA under 3.00 and strike out four Twins. Included in these strikeouts was Byron Buxton with a perfectly placed sinker down and in, getting Buxton to swing over it. (h/t to PL+ member tristall).
Aaron Nola’s Fastball
In his last two starts, Aaron Nola has shown why he is the ace of the Philadelphia Phillies and why he may have been undervalued coming into this season. In Monday’s start, Nola continued his dominance, going eight innings and striking out 10 Braves, while only giving up two hits. This strikeout may have been the best of the night, a 93 mph fastball painting the outside corner to freeze Adam Duvall for the third time of the night.
Chasen Shreve’s Splitter
Another week, another pitcher that I did not expect to be mentioned in these articles. This week it is Chasen Shreve coming out of the bullpen for the Mets to eat innings in a blowout against the Nationals. There may not have been many highlights for the Mets last night, but this splitter to strikeout to Carter Kieboom was one of them.
Randy Dobnak’s Curveball
A former Uber driver, Randy Dobnak has stepped into the Twins rotation and provided quality innings to make up for the injuries to both Jake Odorizzi and Homer Bailey. On Monday, he shut down the Brewers lineup, going five strong innings allowing only one run and striking out three, lowering his ERA to 0.90. This strikeout of Eric Sogard was a beautiful curveball dropped down the bottom of the zone to catch him looking. (h/t to PL+ member KingHippo).
Lance McCullers’ Changeup
Carrying a no-hitter into the seventh inning, Lance McCullers Jr. was absolutely dominating the Giants lineup. He would finish his start only allowing one hit and striking out five batters in his win. On this pitch, he perfectly places a changeup on the outside corner sending Brandon Belt down looking and taking the slow walk back to the dugout.
Freddy Peralta’s Curveball
This Twins-Brewers game was filled with nasty pitches, in a matchup between two guys we didn’t fully expect to end up on this list. Once Adrian Houser was lifted after five innings, Freddy Peralta was brought in for four innings to preserve the deficit that he was handed. He would end up throwing four shutout innings out of the pen and among these outs was this slow 74 mph curveball which Luis Arraez could not wait up for and swung through.
Daniel Bard’s Slider
One of the coolest stories of this 2020 season has been Daniel Bard and his ability to make the Opening Day roster for the first time since 2013. He has become a key pitcher in the Rockies’ bullpen and showed Bud Black why he did not make a mistake in adding him to the team. On Monday he pitched a shutout inning out of relief to hold the deficit at the time to only one run, with two strikeouts, including this slider falling out of the zone to Christian Walker.
GIF of the Night
Which was your favorite pitch? Vote below, and the winner may be featured in our Nastiest Pitches tournament midway through the season.