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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Aroldis Chapman’s Slider
It wasn’t pretty again for Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman in the ninth inning against the Red Sox but he managed to get over the line for his 18th save of the season. He did retire the first two batters he faced before getting into trouble – the second was by strikeout thanks to this phenomenal 84 mph slider with the count at 2-2 to Kevin Plawecki. That is some pitch, just nasty!
Corbin Burnes‘ Cutter
The hype around Corbin Burnes has leveled off somewhat in the media, however, let’s not forget that when he pitches like he did yesterday he is one of the most dominant starters in baseball. He silenced the dangerous bats from the South Side of Chicago with a devastating five-pitch arsenal. The swing-and-miss pitch? His cut-fastball, of course. He has thrown in 51% of the time this year and you can see why. Here is a ripping 96 mph cutter with late movement to strike out Leury Garcia. Simply sensational.
Patrick Sandoval’s Changeup
Let’s give some credit to the two pitchers that flirted with no-hitters yesterday. First up, Angels starter Patrick Sandoval – the affable lefty went two outs short of a no-hitter against the Twins and he dominated with his changeup location. Eight of his 13 strikeouts were thanks to the changeup, and here is a beautiful example – a luscious 84 mph change to strike out Gilberto Celestino.
Framber Valdez’s Curveball
Equally as affable, Astros lefty Framber Valdez is the King of the Curve and he had it humming once again yesterday. He has two variations – the disappearing low curve inside to the righty and the higher, looping curve that bends agonizingly late to touch the edge of the strike zone. This delightful 76 mph curve to fell Curtis Terry is a perfect example of the second variation.
Luis Castillo’s Sinker
We very rarely see multiple angles from third-out strikeout pitches due to television coverage, so it is a shame we only have one view of this miraculous 99 mph sinker from Luis Castillo to K Tommy Edman. It wins my vote for today’s poll hands down.
Casey Mize’s Sinker
There are unhittable sinkers like the one we just saw from Castillo, and then there are the nasty vicious sinkers that aggressively take on the hitter and force them to swing and look silly. Casey Mize, a young pup, absolutely bullies veteran Whit Merrifield with this rising 93 mph sinker high and inside. Sweet Chin Music with style!
Ryan Weathers‘ Slider
The more I watch the Padres’ young lefty Ryan Weathers the more I buy into the long play. He has the craft and command to develop into one of the games’ premier left-handed starters. One of the primary reasons to think this is the movement he gets on his slider to right-handed hitters. Just look at the bite down and inside on this 87 mph slider to Brian Anderson! Oh, yes!
Dillon Tate’s Changeup
Do the Orioles have the makings of an elite closer in Dillon Tate? On this evidence, it sure looks like the case. Notching his second career save yesterday against the Nationals, Dillon showed remarkable command and movement on his changeup. This 87 mph change running away from lefty Josh Bell was simply wonderful.
Nathan Eovaldi’s Splitter
I felt bad last week for omitting Nathan Eovaldi from my article simply because I had featured a number of his pitches in recent weeks. But I couldn’t ignore this amazing 89 mph splitter to Gleyber Torres yesterday. Geez, that’s impressive!
Drew Smyly’s Curveball
How about a bit of veteran lefty love from one of the game’s unheralded arms – Atlanta’s Drew Smyly, now 7-3 on the year, has been a revelation at the back of their rotation, providing their young arms with some much-needed experience. Smyly and this stunning 79 mph curveball forcing elite hitter J.T. Realmuto to bend the knee.
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns of Twitter)