The Nastiest 16 Pitches GIFs of the First Half of 2019

We've gathered the 16 nastiest pitching GIFs from the first half of the season. Which one was the best?

The first half of 2019 was a big one for pitchers. Mike Fiers threw another no-hitter and other pitchers are starting to come to full form. Most importantly, some absurd GIFs emerged in the first half. So ridiculous that the list of honorable mentions from this half probably would have made most other tournaments in the past. Now it’s time to crown the best pitching GIF of them all from the first three and a half months of the season.

The best 16 have been pulled aside and ranked. Now it’s on you, the voter, to decide which stands above the rest.

Here are the rules:

  • All GIFs were pulled from the first half of 2019 (ASG does not count!).
  • You can only vote on a matchup once, so make sure you pick the one you absolutely want.
  • Voting will continue until 12:00 a.m. EST the following morning. This is the first round.


Here are the matchups for Round 1:


American Bracket


1. Chaz Roe’s Slider vs. 8. Jordan Hicks‘ Slider
2. Jordan Hicks‘ Fastball vs. 7. Jose Alvarado’s Two-Seamer
3. Adam Ottavino’s Two-Seamer vs. 6. Aaron Nola’s Two-Seamer
4. Kyle Hendricks‘ Changeup vs 5. Kyle Crick’s Slider


National Bracket


1. Luis Castillo’s Two-Seamer vs. 8. Yonny Chirinos‘ Two-Seamer
2. Yu Darvish’s Slider vs. 7. Luis Castillo’s Changeup
3. Chris Sale’s Slider vs. 6. Clayton Kershaw’s Curveball
4. Framber Valdez’s Sinker vs. 5. Justin Verlander’s Fastball


Watch the GIFs in the Links Below!

Graphics by Justin Paradis (@freshmeatcomm on Twitter)

Chaz Roe’s Slider vs. Jordan Hicks‘ Slider


When we talk about Jordan Hicks, it’s usually because we’re talking about his unfathomably fast heater. Here, we’re taking the time to appreciate Hicks’ wicked slider, which brings Corey Dickerson down to a knee. But he’s got some tough competition, as he’ll be facing the king of nasty pitches himself, Chaz RoeRoe’s slider has gained fame for its ability to break about a foot and a half and fool hitters. Here it is making Khris Davis look like a fool. Wow.






Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363572]

Jordan Hicks‘ Fastball vs. Jose Alvarado’s Two-Seamer


Jose Alvarado brought his pitch in at a wickedly fast 98 mph, but uhh…I guess no one told him he would have to compete with a stupid 103 mph dart from Jordan HicksThis matchup is a 2 vs. 7, but both of these pitches have their own merits that make them uniquely nasty. With Alvarado, it’s his ability to bend a ball that nears triple digits. Hicks, on the other hand, is three ticks over 100 and straight up scares Joey Gallo with this monster of a fastball.






Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363573]

Adam Ottavino’s Two-Seamer vs. Aaron Nola’s Two-Seamer


We featured Adam Ottavino’s slider in yesterday’s honorable mention, but Ottavino is back here today with a filthy two-seamer that just makes Leury Garcia whiff. He’ll be competing with Aaron Nolawho used his own two-seam fastball to earn the ire of Jeff McNeil, who was heated with the umpire after he felt he got a bad call. I have to say, as a Mets fan I can appreciate McNeil’s anger, but man, Nola does a great job of willing the pitch back over the plate for a backwards K.





Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363575]

Kyle Hendricks‘ Changeup vs. Kyle Crick’s Slider


When I was scrolling through GIFs for this tournament, I really thought Kyle Crick would be at least a 4 seed, but I have to give credit to Kyle Hendricks, who used an absolutely stupid changeup that breaks towards Nick Senzel’s back foot. That isn’t to take away from how nasty Crick’s slider is. If I could, I’d call these both four seeds, but I’m obligated to make one of them a five, so it’s gonna be up to you to decide whether or not I got the seeding right on this one.







Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363576]

Luis Castillo’s Two-Seamer vs. Yonny Chirinos‘ Two-Seamer


In our other 1 vs. 8 matchup we’ve got two fastballs, both delivered with a two-seam grip. Both of these pitches are beautiful in their own right. Yonny Chirinoswho became a household name among baseball fans after the Rays adopted the Opener strategy last year, uses a two-seamer that drags from the outside corner and lands dead center to freeze the opposing hitter. In my opinion, the edge goes to Luis Castillo, whose pitch starts heading right towards Eric Hosmer’s gut, but somehow swerves onto the paint.






Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363578]

Yu Darvish’s Slider vs. Luis Castillo’s Changeup


I’m seriously confused by this Yu Darvish pitch. It starts off looking like a fastball on the outside corner, but at the last second it just flies and turns into one of the nastiest back foot sliders of the year. But Darvish’s nasty slider isn’t a lock by any means. He has to go up against arguably the best off-speed pitch in the game—Luis Castillo’s changeup. The pitch is Castillo’s best, and when you watch this gem he threw to Tyler Naquin, it’s easy to see why.






Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363579]

Chris Sale’s Slider vs. Clayton Kershaw’s Curveball


This is a matchup for the ages. Two of the best pitchers of the decade, using their nastiest pitches to induce whiffs. First off, it’s Chris Salewho uses his absurd slider to induce a swing-and-a-miss from Gleyber TorresBut, is it enough to take down Clayton Kershaw and his signature 12-6 curve? One man alone can’t make the call, so we’re relying on the wisdom of the crowd to decide this matchup.






Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363580]

Framber Valdez’s Sinker vs. Justin Verlander’s Fastball


For our last matchup in this round of 16, it’s gonna be a battle of the Astros. Let’s start with Framber Valdezwhose disgusting sinker cuts in right before it jumps back over the outer half of the plate. But is that enough to defeat Justin Verlander? Here, JV can be seen here elevating a 98 mph heater to strike out the greatest hitter of our generation.






Which was the better pitch? Vote to decide which pitch advances to the next round!

[polldaddy poll=10363581]

Donny Moskovits

Donny currently studies Financial Mathematics at Baruch College. He writes nastiest pitches articles here at Pitcher List, and is a die hard Mets fan whose optimism can only be described as unbridled.

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