At Pitcher List, we love nasty pitches. We review the dirtiest of the dirty after every day of games where our readers vote for their favorite. Each week, there are plenty of pitches that don't get the love they deserve and here at Korked we're going to take a look at these underappreciated pitches and understand why they deserve your love.
All GIFs courtesy of PitcherList
1. Blake Treinen's Changeup
After Dusty Baker gave us a ride trying to decipher the mystery of who would take the Nationals closer role, Blake Treinen was given the role entering the season and boy has he impressed. Treinen has been known for a 98mph Sinker that moves more than a pitch of that speed has any right to, paired with a heavy 90mph Slider with a ton of depth. What we didn't prepare for was this 88mph Changeup that completely fell off the table to Christian Yelich that ended the game. It's marvelous in so many ways - the movement, the timing, the fact that we had no idea he was capable of this pitch. Simply fantastic.
2. Blake Snell's Slider
Among the large group of young lively arms is Blake Snell, who has the stuff to make a major splash in the major leagues. If it weren't for his inconsistent command problems, Snell would be one of the more heralded sophomore starters around, which is perfectly exemplified by the above "Changeup" (in fact, this whole graphic is incorrect as it was a 1-2 Slider). The break on this pitch is stellar while its starting location in the middle of the zone is excellent as it induces the swing from Steve Pearce before tumbling out of the zone. Let's hope we see plenty more where this came from in 2017.
3. Justin Verlander's Fastball
Some have question the legitimacy of Justin Verlander's 2016 resurgence, but if this GIF is any indication, 2017 should be more of the same. Not only is the movement on this heater beautiful to watch, but its precision along the inside corner is ideal, as it begins by making a beeline toward Melky Cabrera's hip before swerving back over the plate for a strike. A well deserved strike one.
4. Garrett Richards' Slider
After an injury shortened 2016, Garrett Richards gave us another scare on Tuesday night as he left the game with an undisclosed arm injury in the fifth inning. Fortunately, it was just "bicep cramps", though our fear was amplified given how well Richards looked through the opening frames. Just watch that above GIF as Richards spotted a 91mph Slider right under the strikezone with a ton of drop that Ryon Healy had no chance at surviving.
5. Zach Putnam's Splitter
You may not be aware of who Zach Putnam is, but he's made a career as a sturdy relief option inside the White Sox bullpen for years. He throws his Splitter over 60% of the time and after watching this pitch it's easy to understand why. Not only does it get sudden vertical break, but also fades far away from left-handed bats, making it tough for batters like Tyler Collins to resist a weak hack with two-strikes.