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 GIF of the First Quarter Contest. 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.
Matt Shoemaker‘s Splitter
Last season, Matt Shoemaker pitched to the tune of a 4.94 ERA with a 1.258 WHIP. This year, he’s posted a 1.75 ERA and a 0.857 WHIP, allowing just a ludicrous 4.6 H/9. When we see him throwing pitches like this one, it’s not too hard to see why he’s been so successful to open the year.
Clayton Kershaw‘s Curveball
The king is back, baby. The Klaw encouragingly allowed just 5 hits over 7 IP in his first start off the IL, but even more encouragingly his secondary offerings, which didn’t quite look themselves last year, showed up in full force. Though he had quite a few pitches we could gave displayed here, this goofy half swing by former teammate Yasiel Puig was too good to pass up. Here’s hoping for a year of health and even more filthy curveballs from Kershaw.
Yu Darvish‘s Slider
Ignore for a moment that his opponent is the Marlins and that the batter is pitcher Trevor Richards. Now just watch the movement on this incredible slider a few times. It was an up and down outing for Darvish, particularly in regards to control, but this pitch was 82 MPH of beauty.
Edwin Diaz‘s Fastball
Tonight was absolutely not Rhys Hoskins‘ night, at any level of the game. However, it REALLY wasn’t his night after completing the golden sombrero on this 99 MPH monstrosity from Diaz.
Noah Syndergaard‘s Curveball
While the God of Thunder is no stranger to appearances on this list, it’s not usually his curveball that lands him here, with another Rhys Hoskins whiff. Thor misses the bat by more than the Flyers missed the playoffs this year. It wasn’t his prettiest outing of the year, but he absolutely bullied some hitters today.
Trevor Bauer‘s Changeup
With the kind of night Bauer had, I could have blindly pulled any of his strikeout pitches from last night games out of a hat at random and still had a disgusting pitch to display here. Bauer has evolved into one of the absolute best pitchers in baseball over the last year and a half, with no signs of slowing down. I’m not complaining either, as getting to watch the masterpieces he paints with the strike zone as his medium is a real treat.