Every morning we review the nastiest pitches from the previous day’s games in glorious HD 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 GIF of the First Half Contest. Did we miss your favorite pitch? Send us a tweet next time @PitcherList and we’ll GIF it up + give you a shoutout here in the article.
Jonathan Loaisiga’s Changeup – The first Yankees starter to win his MLB debut since Masahiro Tanaka in 2014, per the YES network, Loaisiga was all kinds of exciting over five innings against the Rays in the Bronx. He hit 97-plus on the gun, struck out six on the night and abused Tampa’s Mallex Smith on this second-inning wizardry. Hot. Damn.
Charlie Morton’s Fastball – Morton picked up nine strikeouts over six innings Friday against the Royals in part thanks to 17 whiffs. Kansas City’s Jorge Soler caught the business end of this 97 mph heater as the Astros starter hit the outside corner with late life.
Jose Urena’s Two-Seamer – Speaking of late life, Urena lived off his darting fastball against the Orioles across eight innings. Though he only picked up four strikeouts, he walked just one and kept Baltimore hitters—including Jonathan Schoop above—on their heels for most of the night.
Kevin Gausman’s Splitter – Gaus flashed his signature put-away pitch against Miami’s Lewis Brinson, bringing the outfielder to one knee to pick up this fourth-inning strikeout.
Aaron Sanchez’s Changeup – Though he can’t consistently put it all together, Sanchez is a magic man when it comes to movement. This offspeed pitch to Washington’s Mark Reynolds was a great example of the kind of action he can get, as this right-on-right change featured obscene English to get him one of his 16 whiffs on the night.
Jake Junis’ Slider – It’s not quite in the category of Chaz Roe‘s or Adam Ottavino‘s slider, but Junis’ featured breaking pitch can have a beautiful shape in its own right. He showed off its parabolic tendencies in the second inning against Houston’s Evan Gattis to leave the DH flailing.
Fernando Rodney’s Changeup – The Twins closer has made a few appearances in this space on the back of his 95 mph-plus two-seamer, but this inside change to Cleveland’s Francisco Lindor ended the Indians’ night and earned the 41-year-old his 15th save. It’s OK, Addison Reed, we here for you. We didn’t expect this either.
Adam Ottavino’s Slider – Ottavino was up to his old tricks in his first appearance off the DL after an oblique issue, getting Texas’ Isiah Kiner-Falefa to chase this eighth-inning filthiness (h/t to our Ben Palmer for the spot).
GIF of the Night
Which was your favorite pitch? Vote below, and the winner will be featured in the GIF of the First Half Contest.
Loaisiga’s changeup. hands down. Wow, that thing can move.