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 September Nastiest Pitches 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.
Stephen Strasburg’s Changeup
Stephen Strasburg’s 30 starts so far this season are the most he’s managed to make since 2014, and he’s done it with a very solid 3.49 ERA and 10.8 K/9. Add in an NL-leading 17 wins, and it’s easy to see why he’s among the best-paid starters in baseball. The Nats have a nice three-game lead for the first NL Wild Card spot, and Strasburg will be a major part of their potential playoff run, assuming they hold it.
Josh Hader’s Slider
After Corey Knebel went down with an injury early, it was apparent the Brewers would be heavily reliant on Josh Hader being able to recapture the magic of his 2018 season, now as a closer. Incredibly, he’s been even better, nailing down 30 saves while posting a 2.55 ERA and a ludicrous 16.7 K/9. He’s been tagged for home runs more often this season, but something tells me the Brewers won’t complain too much when he’s mowing down batters like a weed whacker.
Jesus Luzardo’s Fastball
Making his long-awaited and highly anticipated MLB debut on Wednesday, Jesus Luzardo punched out Aledmys Diaz with this crazy fastball for his first ever MLB strikeout, following it with another strikeout against Myles Straw. When all was said and done, Luzardo retired nine of 10 batters he faced, including the final seven, impressive against any team but even more so against the vaunted Astros offense. Whether he’ll see work in the rotation this September this season remains to be seen, but Luzardo looks to be one of the most exciting young pitchers in baseball and someone who will be remarkably fun to watch next year.
Jose Urquidy’s Slider
Another talented AL West youngster, Jose Urquidy had a career-best game on Wednesday against Oakland, allowing a single earned run over five innings while striking out 10. The bullpen would eventually blow it for him, but he more than did his part. His results at the major league level haven’t been great (4.78 ERA), but the young hurler could be exciting next season if he can nail down a rotation spot.
Nick Vincent’s Cutter
After an awful start to the season, Nick Vincent has allowed just one run as a Philly after leaving San Francisco. It’s been an uncharacteristically poor season for the usually solid 33-year-old, and he should continue to be a solid bullpen presence next season, likely for his fourth team in three years.
Chris Martin’s Changeup
Sadly, not the lead singer of Coldplay. Though his results this season make me think perhaps he could be. The 33-year-old has really never gained much traction at the MLB level until his play at Texas this year, and the Rangers represent the only team he’s managed to stay with for more than a single season. He’s largely just a warm body for the bullpen, but at the very least, this changeup is gorgeous.
GIF of the Night
Which was your favorite pitch? Vote below, and the winner will be featured in the September Nastiest Pitches GIF Tournament.