“That’s the only way I can explain it. We just recently updated our player pages for mobile and added a few new features! Ryan is also the all-time strikeout king with 5,714 K's during his career. He also struck out 1,610 batters while walking just 778 through 2,254.1 innings pitched. Although it was not his only dominating pitch, his "heater" was arguably the main reason the big left-hander made it to the majors and stuck around long enough to earn 303 wins and 4,875 strikeouts. Johan Santana is another modern-day ace who had one of the most dominant pitches in baseball history while he was still healthy. He only averaged more than three strikeouts per nine innings four times in his career. His fastball helped lead him to 417 career wins and 3,509 strikeouts. Trevor Hoffman used the changeup as his pitch of choice to strike out many of the 1,133 batters he fanned during his 18-year career. Rip Sewell was hardly a strikeout pitcher during his 13-year career in the majors. After coming to the Oakland A's in 1986, Stewart would use the forkball to go on to win 20 games or more in each of the next four seasons, as he established himself as one of baseball's most dominant pitchers. Hoffman gripped the ball with his palm, rather than using his fingers, to create the difference in speed to trick batters into swinging early. His career strikeout per nine inning (K/9) ratio was 7.4, although it was dragged down by his final few seasons. Bob Feller quickly earned comparisons to Walter Johnson early in his career. Paige was the star of the Negro Leagues prior to being invited to join the major leagues in 1948.
If you're looking for a good baseball read, check out Gary Moore's Playing with the Enemy: A Baseball Prodigy, World War II, and the Long Journey Home. At just 31 years old, he still has a few seasons left to prove he can be one of the game's all-time greats. I just got done telling you that closers have good fastballs. Carl Hubbell reportedly threw his screwball so often that his left palm eventually faced outward. Walsh racked up 195 wins during his career, including 40 wins in 1908 alone. Phil Niekro was the master of throwing the knuckleball during his 24-year major-league career. His gyroball, which appeared to have a different axis of rotation, was responsible for his strikeout ratio of over 8.0 K/9 in each of his first three seasons and 7.8 K/9 last season.
Prior to injuries setting him back the past few seasons, Jake Peavy was one of the league's most dominating pitchers. The result of the altered balls was some deceiving movement that aided Ford in his 236 wins and 1,956 strikeouts. John Smoltz is likely a first-ballot Hall of Famer, having amassed 213 career wins and 154 saves. Despite not being a very hard thrower, Maddux recorded 3,371 strikeouts, as he made his throws with pinpoint accuracy on most nights (his career SO/BB ratio is 3.37). Justin Verlander has one of the best fastballs in the game today. Mo proceeded to blow three of his first six save opportunities, and he was frustrated. He finished his career with 2,293 strikeouts and a 3.51 ERA and held batters to a .244 average. Pitchin… Tom Seaver had one of the best sliders of all time.
We now call this pitch the "screwball," and it was Mathewson's go-to pitch during his Hall of Fame career. He would force batters to swing and chase the pitch into the dirt, thinking they were seeing his fastball. The changeup had enough speed differential and movement to make batters look silly against him. It’s the reason that Rivera broke so many bats throughout his career, and induced so many weak groundballs — in addition to all the strikeouts.
I’m sure you’ve heard or read this stat: More men have walked on the moon (12) than have scored against Rivera in the postseason (11). He didn’t develop the pitch — or rather receive the divine gift — until the following season. Despite being better known for his fastball, Beckett's curveball is responsible for many of his 1,601 career strikeouts. Greg Maddux pitched his way to a 355-227 record with a career 3.16 ERA. Roy Face just happens to be mentioned at one point in this excellent book. His four-seam fastball cuts only slightly, while the cutter has a sharper horizontal movement — about five inches more. He had a unique pitch, though, that he only allowed a single homer on in his entire career. Aside from having one of the most intimidating glares in baseball history, Dave Stewart also had one of the most devastating forkballs in baseball. ”I’m telling you, it’s a gift from God,” Rivera said. He stands as the career leader in saves (652), games finished (952), and ERA+ (205). I was gripping the ball all kinds of ways. Josh Beckett's most dominating pitch, and one of the best in the game today, is his curveball. Bert Blyleven's curveball was certainly a contributing factor to a career that earned him a place in Cooperstown. How about the number 527? Rich "Goose" Gossage earned his nickname for putting "goose eggs" on the scoreboard regularly. His four-seamer and two-seamer also move, and therein lies the deception. Blyleven used his curve to help him win 287 games and strike out 3,701 batters over 22 seasons in the majors. Play-by-play data prior to 2002 was obtained free of charge from and is copyrighted Halladay has 185 wins so far and 1,909 strikeouts. Pedro Martinez had a dominating fastball, but his changeup was the pitch he would throw to embarrass hitters.
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