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 Third 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.
Zack Greinke’s Curveball
Let’s play a game: every time Zack Greinke throws a sub-70 mph curveball on a day I write the nasty pitch writeup and it ends up in said writeup, take a shot. Not a very efficient game, but a consistent one at least. Greinke has simply continued his crusade to prove age is just a number in 2019, as the 35-going-on-36-year-old owns a 2.87 ERA and 1.14 BB/9 through 22 starts, making a case for his first Cy Young Award since 2009. For reference, Juan Soto was an 11 year-old when Greinke brought home his first Cy Young. That’s insane, and so is Greinke’s aging curve.
Adrian Houser’s Fastball
Put simply, 96 mph shouldn’t move like this. But Adrian Houser doesn’t care about you or your physics; he just cares about striking guys out, which he’s done a solid job of this season. He hasn’t been extraordinary (he owns a 4.19 ERA), but he’s been a reliable enough arm out of the Milwaukee bullpen, and the 26-year-old should only improve.
Chris Stratton’s Slider
Baseball is weird, man. If you told me last year that Chris Stratton’s slider would be one of my favorite pitches in baseball, I would have laughed at you. And probably authored a mocking tweet about you as well. This is the world we live in, though, and Stratton has been electrifying to watch at times since heading over to Pittsburgh. Until his slider stops being one of the most consistently unfair pitches in baseball, though, don’t expect to get any break from seeing Stratton in these writeups.
Carlos Martinez’s Fastball
After several years as a fixture of the Cardinals rotation, Carlos Martinez has been rock solid after transitioning into a bullpen role. Though he’s struggled with injuries, they clearly haven’t affected his effectiveness too much, as we’re still seeing ridiculous wizardry like this heater, which breaks faster than a teapot in a wood chipper.
Jack Flaherty’s Slider
This pitch might have been good enough to make it on the list on its own merits, but I’m going to be honest. Jose Altuve’s Looney Tunes-esque fall is largely the reason this Jack Flaherty offering made it. It’s been an underwhelming sophomore campaign for Flaherty, but one thing that hasn’t changed is his propensity for racking up Ks (10.1 K/9 on the year).
GIF of the Night
Which was your favorite pitch? Vote below, and the winner will be featured in the GIF of the Third Quarter Contest.