… related to The Neyer/James Guide to Pitchers.
All the Pitchers Who Wouldn’t Fit: L-RThere were a lot of things that wouldn’t fit in the book, and a lot of things that I’ve found since the book, and these pages are designed to hold some of those things. If you see a pitcher’s name without any years or information on the same line, that means he’s in the book, and the information supplements his entry in the book. If you see his years in the majors or minors, or a Negro League identifier, that means he’s not in the book at all. Which means you’re looking at some new stuff!
155 pitchers listed below; updated 10/24/2013 John Lackey (2002 2013) Key Pitch: Fastball (low-90s) Lackey: “Trusting my secondary pitches has been the biggest key for me. I’ve incorporated a cutter, and that’s been a big pitch. I’m trusting my changeup in tough situations, and that gives me more options when my curveball is not working. Another key is being able to pitch inside, both for effect and for strikes.” Source: The Sporting News (Kieran O’Dwyer, 8/25/2006) Al Lakeman (1948) Pitches: 1. Fastball 2. Curve Source: The Sporting News (7/07/1948, Stan Baumgartner) Note: Lakeman, a catcher, supposedly was going to make the big switch to pitching. But he got into only one game, pitching two-thirds of an inning. Jim LaMarque (Negro Leagues) Catcher Frazier “Slow” Robinson: “Lamarque had an excellent curveball, a good screwball, and could throw hard. He also had a very good pickoff move.” Source: Catching Dreams: My Life in the Negro Baseball Leagues (Frazier “Slow” Robinson with Paul Bauer, 1999) Gary Lance (1977) Pitches: 1. Sinker 2. Slider Lance: “I got to the major leagues with only two pitches.” Source: Interview with Lance (Rob Neyer, 7/30/2005) Henny Landers (Negro Leagues) Pitch Selection: 1. Rising Fastball 2. Sinker Source: Black Baseball in Kansas City (Larry Lester and Sammy J. Miller, 2000) Bill Laxton (1970 1977) Report: “Laxton could be another Sandy Koufax . . . or just another thrower, but he has a major league arm.” Source: San Diego General Manager Eddie Leishman in The Sporting News (12/12/1970, Stan Isle) Mike Leake (2010 2013) Report: “A scout sitting behind home plate at Turner Field during the Braves–Reds game on Thursday was delighted at Leake’s retiring hitters with 88-to-89-m.p.h. fastballs. Braves catcher Brian McCann admired Leake’s ability to add to and subtract from his pitch velocity and move the ball around in the strike zone … Leake’s command of his pitches stands out more than the velocity of his fastball and the bend to his curveball. He works both sides of the plate with a curveball that bends at the knees and a fastball that darts and sinks away from left-handed hitters. From pitch to pitch, he forces hitters to look up, then down.” Source: The New York Times (Ray Glier, 5/22/2010) Wilfredo Ledezma (2003 2009) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball (mid-90s) 2. Hard Curve Source: The Sporting News (9/15/2006, Jason Beck) Cliff Lee (2006 2013) Report: “LHP Cliff Lee is off the D.L. and has a new pitch — a slider that complements his fastball, cutter and curve.” Source: The Sporting News (Anthony Castrovince, 5/14/2007) Bill Lefebvre (1938 1944) Lefebvre: “I had good control for a left-hander. I hit spots, you know? I was never overpowering. I probably threw in the 88 to 89 m.p.h. range. I had a slider, which was supposed to be a curveball, but I never had a big curveball. I threw a palmball, like Satchel Paige. You put the ball in your hand, and you let it drop between your little finger and the thumb. It’s a floater, you know? Change of pace.” Source: Hardball on the Home Front (Craig Allen Cleve, 2004) Ken Lehman (1952 1961) Lehman: “Now, I hope, I’ve got all that I need — a fast ball, a good curve, a change on both of them and the knuckler.” Source: Baseball Digest (Michael Gaven, May 1956) Dennis Leonard Al Oliver: “He’s one of the most competitive pitchers I’ve faced since Bob Gibson. He has a super fastball and a change that will get better. His slider is also very good. All he has to do is keep the ball down consistently.” Source: SPORT Magazine (May 1979, Stephen Hanks) Don Liddle (1953 1956) Pitch Selection: 1. Curve 2. Fastball Liddle: “The curveball was my best pitch. I could usually get it over, even on a 3 and 0 count or 3 and 1.” Source: Inside Pitch: Classic Baseball Moments (John C. Skipper, 1996) Brad Lidge (2002 2012) Report: “Reliever Brad Lidge has better stuff and command than the closer he’s setting up, Octavio Dotel . . . Righthanders have almost no chance against Lidge’s 91-mph slider and 97-mph fastball.” Source: Sports Illustrated (5/24/2004, Tom Verducci) Report: “Now the Lidge slider is perhaps the most devastating pitch in the game, especially since he still throws 97 mph heat. The low-90s slider has wicked downward movement, much like Robb Nen’s in his prime, only Lidge throws slightly harder than Nen did.” Source: ESPN The Magazine (10/24/2005, Tim Kurkjian) Report: “RHP Brad Lidge credits much of his recent success to his two-seam fastball. He is using it to complement his four-seamer and slider, and the two-seamer’s movement allows him to work inside to righthanders more effectively.” Source: The Sporting News (9/15/2006, Alyson Footer) Dutch Lieber (1935 1936) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Knuckleball Note: This entry should probably be considered at least somewhat suspect, as it comes from a letter sent to TSN by a fan. Source: The Sporting News (1/24/1935) Tim Lincecum (2007 2013) Pitches: 1. Fastball (95) 2. Curve 3. Change (85) Source: The Hardball Times (Josh Kalk, 12/4/2007) Pitches: 1. Fastball (91-98) 2. Curveball 3. Changeup 4. Hard Slider Source: Baseball America Prospect Handbook 2007 Report: “Lincecum seems to have this pitching thing all figured out, thanks to a homemade delivery crafted by his father. As he winds up, Lincecum turns his back slightly away from the hitter while peering over his left shoulder with his head slightly dipped, reminiscent of either Orel Hershiser or the Fosbury Flop high jump technique. As he falls toward the hitter, his left foot lands slightly out of line to his right foot (toward third base) before his arm comes whipping ferociously across his body as his hips rotate with tremendous speed reminiscent of Tim Hudson. The style, not to mention a snapdragon of a curveball, is particularly brutal on righthanded hitters, who whiffed 23 times in their first 72 cracks at him with a .264 slugging percentage.” Source: SI.com (Tom Verducci, 6/5/2007) Report: “Lincecum, a 22-year-old rookie right-hander, contorts his 5-foot-11, 160-pound frame in an over-the-top motion that may make chiropractors cringe but creates little stress on his body — and, oh by the way, helps him to routinely throw in the upper 90s.” Source: The New York Times (Ben Shpigel, 5/28/2007) Report: “Lincecum has a gymnast’s flexibility and coordination, allowing his legs, hips and torso — the keys to his delivery — to work in such exquisite harmony. There are two essential reasons for his velocity: 1) His front side, especially his left shoulder, stays square to the target for as long as possible, producing outrageous torque, and 2) he has an abnormally long stride, which would place enormous pressure on his left leg if not for his right ‘ankle kick’ off the mound.” Source: Sports Illustrated (Tom Verducci, 7/7/2008) Matt Lindstrom (2007 2013) Pitches: 1. Fastball (98-99) 2. Slider 3. Splitter Source: Marlins TV broadcast, 4/16/2007 Royce Lint (1954) Key Pitch: Knuckleball Sources: Clay Hopper in Associated Press story (Gettysburg Times, 3/5/1954); Ed Mickelson in Out of the Park (Mickelson, 2007) Hopper: “Lint loves to pitch. He’ll start one day and relieve the next. He pitches sidearm with a three-quarter motion and the knuckle ball is his best pitch. He gets it over the plate, or rather near the plate, for he pitches like Preacher Roe, Ken Raffensberger, Ed Lopat and Harry Brecheen. He not only looks like Brecheen but he also acts like a cat off the mound. He uses his knuckler mostly against right-handed batters and that’s a big advantage for a southpaw.” Mark Littell Pitches: 1. Fastball 2. Slider Source: 1976 American League Championship Series program (Royals edition) Kyle Lohse (2001 2013) Report: “RHP Kyle Lohse has found success with the Cardinals and pitching coach Dave Duncan this season because of his ability to locate his sinker and fastball at the knees on either edge of the strike zone. By focusing on keeping the ball down, Lohse — who has allowed at least 22 homers in five seasons — has been able to keep the ball in the park … and stay away from big innings.” Source: The Sporting News (7/14/2008) Braden Looper (1998 2009) Report: “The 32-year-old Looper, a sinker-slider guy as a reliever, is now sprinkling in a four-seam fastball and a splitter, and he’s tinkered with a cutter.” Source: ESPN The Magazine (Jerry Crasnick, 5/7/2007) Looper, on starting: “I’m able to use all four pitches and not concentrate so much on my sinker and slider.” Source: The Sporting News (5/7/2007) Eddie Lopat Memory: “Eddie had a strange motion; he’d throw his shoulder and his head at you, and then here comes the ball. The first time I ever faced him, I saw the ball well, I got three hits, and I hit the ball hard every time. After the game, the other guys told me they were surprised that I was able to hit so well against him and his off-speed pitches. I didn’t say much, because I didn’t want them to know that I thought they were just fastballs that didn’t have much on them. I found out Lopat had a bunch of ‘junk’ pitches that came at you at different speeds and from different motions, and he mixed them up to keep hitters off-stride.” Source: Wayne Terwilliger in Terwilliger Bunts One (Wayne Terwilliger w/Nancy Peterson & Peter Boehm, 2006) Hal Newhouser: “Eddie Lopat . . . uses a change of pace on practically every pitch, and throws three or four different speeds. He’s tough to hit when he is having a good day.” Source: Pitching to Win (Hal Newhouser, 1948) Marcelino Lopez (1963 1972) Pitches: 1. Fastball 2. Curve Lopez: “I know I have lazy curve. I always get by on fast ball. It still my best pitch, but now I have one more pitch to make hitter think.” Source: The Sporting News (5/15/1965, Ross Newhan; obviously, this citation describes Lopez early in his career; he was twenty-one at the time.) Mark Lowe (2006 2013) Pitches: 1. Fastball (mid-90s) 2. Hard Slider 3. Change Source: The Sporting News (8/11/2006, Corey Brock) Noah Lowry (2003 2007) Pitches: 1. Changeup 2. Fastball (88) 3. Breaking Balls Report: “His best pitch is a changeup with some dive. Lowry throws an 88-mph four-seam fastball with little tail for a lefthander. He shows the ability but not the confidence to change the shape and location of his breaking balls.” Source: Lewis Shaw in The Sporting News (5/20/2005) Raydell Maddix (Negro Leagues) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Curve (ineffective) Source: Maddix in The Negro Leagues Revisited (Brent Kelley, 2000) Art Mahaffey Note: According to Ed Richter in The Making of a Big League Pitcher (1963), Mahaffey first started throwing a slider in 1962. Note: According to Willie Mays (in a 2010 interview with Bob Costas for the MLB Network), Mahaffey’s outstanding pickoff move was thrown underhand. Duster Mails (1915 1926) Pitches: 1. Fastball 2. Curve Source: The Pitch That Killed (Mike Sowell, 1989) In same source, Mails speaks in 1920 about his brief trials in 1915 and ’16 with the Dodgers: “I didn’t deliberately try to dust them off. I simply couldn’t make the ball go where I wanted it to go. Any batter who faced me then did so at his own risk. But I was wild, not from choice, but because I couldn’t help myself.” Phil Marchildon Hal Newhouser: ” . . . and Phil Marchildon of the Philadelphia Athletics is always tough to hit when his fast ball is working because it goes up and in to a right-handed hitter.” Source: Pitching to Win (Hal Newhouser, 1948) Shaun Marcum (2005 2013) Story: “When he was young, his parents and coaches wouldn’t let him throw a curveball, so he worked on his change. It’s probably the biggest reason he’s now a big league pitcher.” Source: The Sporting News (6/23/2008, The Sports Xchange) Connie Marrero Key Pitch: Slider Source: In a letter of July 18, 2005, Cuban baseball expert Peter C. Bjarkman writes, “Talking with the 92-year-old Marrero several times recently in Havana, he still insists that his main pitch was the SLIDER and that he threw it almost exclusively at times.” Also, in a Bjarkman article published in Elysian Fields Quarterly (Winter, 2000), Marrero claimed he was actually 5’5″ rather than the 5’7″ that’s listed in the encyclopedias. Description: “Chico Marrero, the little señor with the big curve ball.” Source: Morris Siegel in The Washington Post (7/2/1951) Memory: “Camilo Pascual was the best Cuban pitcher. Marrero I faced my first year. All he threw were sliders. He was hard to hit.” Source: Chico Fernández in Memories of Winter Ball (Lou Hernández, 2013) Fred Martin (1946 1950) Pitches: 1. Sinker 2. Fastball 3. Curve Source: The Sporting News (5/22/1941, Page 6); Martin didn’t reach the majors until five years after this report. Memory: “He was in his late thirties at the time but was able to rise to any occasion. Freddie broke me up when he would walk into a game bouncing on his tiptoes as if walking on eggs. He would give that sly grin of his, throw his sidearm sinker for a double play with the bases loaded, and tiptoe to the dugout, getting us out of one jam after another. . . Fred Martin was one of the toughest and coolest competitors I have ever seen operate in stress situations.” Source: Ed Mickelson in Out of the Park (Mickelson, 2007; this describes Perkovich in 1947) Trivia: Fred Martin later became semi-famous for teaching Bruce Sutter to throw the split-fingered fastball. Jack Matchett (Negro Leagues) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Curve 3. Slider Source: Black Baseball in Kansas City (Larry Lester and Sammy J. Miller, 2000) Christy Mathewson Report: “They say even the great Mathewson had a give-away. When he was going to throw his celebrated fadeaway ball, now known as the screwball, he would bring his hands farther back over his head than at any other time.” Source: New York World-Telegram (Joe Williams, 3/26/1936) Verdell Mathis (Negro Leagues) Key Pitch: Screwball Mathis: Right-handers couldn’t hit me, because of my screw ball. I was happy when they put eight right-handers in the lineup. I knew I had a good chance of winning that game.” Source: Black Diamonds (John B. Holway, 1989) Catcher “Slow” Robinson: “Another guy that threw that screwball was Verdell Mathis of the Memphis Red Sox. I played against him quite a bit. He was a left-hander and a good pitcher all-around. He’d use that screwball on right-handed batters and, just like Tiant [Sr.], it’d keep you off stride. The other thing that Mathis did that reminded me of Tiant was fool runners with a very tricky pickoff move.” Source: Catching Dreams: My Life in the Negro Baseball Leagues (Frazier “Slow” Robinson with Paul Bauer, 1999) Daisuke Matsuzaka (2007 2013) Key Pitch: Fastball (mid-90s) Theo Epstein: “When he wants, he can reach back for more. He also has a sufficient slider, a tough changeup, a split finger, a curveball and cutter.” Source: Sports Weekly (Jorge L. Ortiz, 2/13/2007) Report: “Of his four main pitches (sorry, the gyroball isn’t one of them), his fastball is the best. He throws it hard — in the low to mid-90s — and likes it to ride up and out of the zone. Because major league umpires are not known for calling high strikes, Matsuzaka may have to adjust if hitters lay off those pitches… A scout who has watched Matsuzaka in person and on tape says his fastball (he has a four-seamer and two-seamer), curve, slider and splitter are well above average by big league standards and that his changeup is above average. His curve features such a big break that throwing it for strikes can be a challenge.” Source: The Sporting News (Stan McNeal, 3/5/2007) Report: “By his own count, Matsuzaka throws a four-seam fastball, a two-seam fastball, a cut fastball, a shuuto (hard sinker with left to right cut), a curveball, a splitter, and a changeup that the Red Sox regard as his nastiest pitch because he imparts a rare screwball action to it.” Source: SI.com (Tom Verducci, posted 3/20/2007) Dave McCarty (2004) Pitches: 1. Fastball (low-80s) 2. Slider 3. Splitter 4. Change Source: ESPN.com (3/9/2004, Jayson Stark) Bob McClure Note: I asked McClure about his knuckleball, and he told me 1) he didn’t throw it at all when employed as a short reliever, 2) he threw a “hard knuckleball,” and 3) when pitching for the Brewers, he was pitching a shutout through three innings, throwing nothing but knuckleballs, and George Bamberger told him if he threw one more knuckler, Bamberger would yank him from the game. Source: Interview (8/14/2005) Phil McCullough (1942) Key Pitch: Knuckleball Source: The Sporting News (3/26/1942, Shirley Povich) Booker “Cannonball” McDaniels (Negro Leagues) Key Pitch: Fastball Buck O’Neil: “That Booker McDaniels could throw hard, just about as hard as Satchel. Ruined his arm from it.” Source: Black Baseball in Kansas City (Larry Lester and Sammy J. Miller, 2000) Danny McDevitt (1957 1962) Pitches: 1. Sinker 2. Curve 3. Fastball 4. Change-up Source: The Sporting News (7/3/1957, Dan Daniel) Trivia: On September 24, 1957, McDevitt pitched a 2-0 shutout against the Pirates in the last game at Ebbets Field. Jack McDowell Shane Mack: “You can see why he’s a 20-game winner. He throws a great forkball. The last guy I saw consistently do that was Mike Scott with Houston. McDowell’s breaks like a slider away from the hitter and you’ve got no chance.” Source: The Sporting News 1994 Baseball Yearbook (Joel Bierig and Bruce Levine) Terris McDuffie (Negro Leagues) McDuffie: “I concentrated on control. I had a sinker, a slider, a curve and different speeds and a good fast ball. My favorite pitch was my sliding sinker. I never had to use off-pitches like the knuckler or sneaky slow stuff.” Source: Baseball Has Done It (Jackie Robinson, 1964) Cody McKay (2004) Pitches: 1. Knuckleball (54) 2. Fastball (79, occasional) Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch (4/9/2004, Rick Hummel) Note: McKay was a back-up catcher who pitched a few games in the minors in emergency situations, then pitched a game for the Cardinals in 2004. Cal McLish According to one source cited in the book, McLish threw a screwball. But on July 21, 2004, McLish told me that he never threw a screwball. Instead, he threw a sort of change-up that behaved something like a screwball. Don McMahon Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Curve 3. Slider McMahon: “I didn’t have a curve until 1959 and I didn’t develop a good one until two years later. The fast one is still my bread and butter pitch, however.” Source: Don McMahon: Relief Ace of the Colt .45s (entry in “Here Come the Colts” pamphlet series); same source says that McMahon relied mostly on his fastball and curve, and threw them both overhand and sidearm. McMahon: “I relied completely on the fastball and sheer strength… Just try to overpower them. I’d get bruised on my arm from trying to throw too hard. But that’s all I did, there was no finesse about it. And my ball moved. There’s not too many fellas where their fastball will move consistently the way mine did. I pitched in and I pitched up most of the time. That’s against the whole theory of pitching, but that’s the way I pitched. Source: SF Giants: An Oral History (Mike Mandel, 1979) Dave McNally Hank Bauer: “To be effective as a starter a pitcher has got to have more than one pitch. Dave McNally, who by my standards has the best curve ball in the league, would not be nearly so good with it if he did not also have a live fast ball one that moves as it comes to the plate.” Source: Championship Baseball (1968) Heinie Meine Story: “His name was Heine Miene, who gave so much concentration to his job that when he had finished a game he could check off each of the 100-odd pitches he had made, cite the situation and explain just why he made each pitch. sometimes he failed to accomplish what he wanted but more often he succeeded because he had a definite plan in mind against each hitter.” Source: Ernie Mehl in The Kansas City Star (3/4/1962) Cla Meredith (2005 2010) Key Pitch: Sinker Source: The Sporting News (9/1/2006, Lyle Spencer) Report: “He shows no fear as he throws his sinker and slider on the black, and his razor-sharp control keeps him out of hitters’ counts. He developed his sidearm motion playing second base as a kid, while emulating his hero … Cal Ripken.” Source: The Sporting News (9/15/2006, Lyle Spencer) Andy Messersmith Tom Seaver: “Messersmith has the best understanding of any pitcher of the importance of changing speeds in pitching. Even in college — and I saw him pitch then — he had a great change-up. He always kept the hitters off-stride. He never let himself settle into a predictable pattern.” Source: Sport (Dick Schaap, May 1976) Andrew Miller (2006 2013) Key Pitch: Fastball (mid-90s) Report: “He’s trying to become more consistent with his sinker and is learning to command a changeup.” Source: The Sporting News (Ryan Fagan, 3/31/2008) Stu Miller Miller: “I just came up with an excellent change of pace. And it got me right up to the big leagues in a hurry. Other than that I just threw the normal pitches, fastball, curveball, and I changed up on each one. But I could throw them both sidearm, too. Overhand fastball, sidearm fastball, overhand curveball, sidearm curveball, and I changed up on each one, which gave me about eight different things I could throw. Later on I worked with a slider but not with too much success. I never had any knuckleball or spitter or screwball, just the normal stuff.” Source: SF Giants: An Oral History (Mike Mandel, 1979) Hank Bauer: “We have a relief pitcher, Stu Miller, who does practically all his pitching with his head and neck. His motions vary so from pitch to pitch that the batter can never tell when the ball is really coming. A lot of them will insist that if Stu ever came down with a stiff neck he would be out of a job in two weeks. That is not strictly true, because Stu can still put quite a lot on a baseball. But those twists and gawks and cranings of neck and head add about 50 per cent to his effectiveness.” Source: Championship Baseball (Hank Bauer, 1968) Hur Min (Independent 2013) Only Pitch: Knuckleball Explanation: Min, a very rich South Korean fellow, pitched for the Can-Am League’s Rockland Boulders as a stunt, and lasted three-plus innings in his one outing. Source: The New Yorker (Ben McGrath, 9/16/2013) Steve Mingori Report: “With a sidearmed delivery and darting screwball, the 32-year-old lefthander can be equally effective against righthanded and lefthanded hitters.” Source: 1976 American League Championship Series program (Royals edition) Dick Mlady (Minor Leagues, 1940 1948) Key Pitch: Curve Ball Source: The Sporting News (3/5/1947, Harold C. Burr) Joe Moeller (1962 1971) Key Pitch: Fastball Comment: “Moeller’s No. 1 pitch is more than alive. He can make it take off either way by exerting pressure with either his index or middle finger.” Source: The Sporting News (3/14/1962, Bob Hunter) Note: Same article, Al Campanis quoted calling Moeller “the best prospect I’ve ever seen.” During the 1962 season, Walter Alston said that Moeller, at nineteen the youngest player in the majors, “will develop faster than Sandy Koufax.” Scouting Report: “Great control for a kid 19 — Mostly fast balls and keeps pitches low — Can steal bases on his deliberate motion, this includes home. Rarely throws over to first base.” Source: Eddie Stanky (April 1962) Randy Moffitt Pitches: 1. Slider 2. Sinker (fastball) Source: SF Giants: An Oral History (Mike Mandel, 1979) Balor Moore (1970 1980) Report: “Balor Moore was one of the best young left-handed pitchers I have ever seen. Red Murff was a tremendous scout who worked for us and he scouted Balor Moore down in the Houston area. Balor had a great fastball, decent curve and a decent changeup. He was only a high school guy but a quick learner and his fastball really exploded when it was down. Source: Didier in Podnuh Let Me Tell You a Story: A Baseball Life (Didier and T. R. Sullivan, 2007) Note: Moore was the Expos’ first-ever amateur draft pick (June draft). According to Didier, Moore’s career went into the toilet after Gene Mauch ordered pitching coach Cal McLish to teach Moore a slider, which took away from what had been a good curveball. Johnny Morrison Note: “Anticipating that Johnny Morrison, whose forte is a fast overhand ball, would be in the Pittsburgh box today. Manager Harris had Harry Leibold, Bobby Veach and Everett Scott, all overhand throwers, although not pitchers, flinging to the Nat batters in the preliminary stick drill.” Source: The Washington Post (Frank H. Young, 10/15/1925) Don Mossi Comment: “With Frank Lary and Jim Bunning, Mossi became a bellwether of the Detroit mound corps in 1961. He improved the new pitches he needed to acquire in order to make it as a front-line hurler — the slider and changeup.” Source: Inside Sports (Ray Lasky, August 1962) Jamie Moyer Wade Boggs: “I just sat on his change-up. He would throw 82, 83 miles an hour, and then come back with a 76, 75, 74 mile-an-hour change-up. And back ’em up. And I’d just sit on the change-up. But one day in Yankee Stadium he had me 0-2 in my first at-bat, and threw me a knuckleball. I looked out at him, and he said, ‘I gotta try something.’ ” Source: ESPN’s Baseball Tonight (4/13/2008) Mark Mulder (2000 2008) Pitches: 1. Fastball (low-90s) 2. Slider 3. Curve 4. Change Source: The Scouting Notebook 2004 Dick Mulligan (1941 1947) Key Pitch, 1941: Knuckleball Source: The Sporting News (1/29/1942, Shirley Povich) Les Munns (1933 1936) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Knuckleball Source: The Sporting News (3/15/1934) Dale Murray Key Pitch, 1974-1976: Sinking Fastball Other Pitches: 1. Knuckle Curve 2. Slider (added in 1976) Source: The Sporting News (7/10/1976, Bob Dunn) Mike Mussina Report: “Mussina made up his knuckle-curve and used it for more than 20 years. He hooked his index and middle fingers into the seams and used his other three fingers to support the bottom half of the ball. As he propelled the ball forward, he shot his fingers out to form a V. The result was hard topspin action that caused the ball to break in different directions. Now that he is 38, with an elbow that has bothered him in recent years, Mussina no longer throws that pitch. His current curveball is one he learned at Stanford in 1988. He digs into the seam above the sweet spot with his index finger only — a so-called spike curveball — and rests his middle finger a few centimeters away.” Source: The New York Times (Tyler Kepner, 3/4/2007) Ray Narleski Narleski: “When I’m right, my fast ball hops or jumps. So the batters would miss it or come under it for fly balls that go nine miles high. If it doesn’t jump, they hit it nine miles on a line out of the ball park. It wasn’t hopping last year and that’s why I had such a miserable season.” Source: Arthur Daley column in The New York Times (3/16/1960) Buster Narum (1963 1967) Memory: “Pitcher Buster Narum had enjoyed some success with the Senators — he had average stuff but a good change-up — but he hadn’t been consistent.” Source: Wayne Terwilliger in Terwilliger Bunts One (Terwilliger w/Nancy Peterson & Peter Boehm, 2006) Joe Nathan (1999 2013) Huston Street: “Joe Nathan. His fastball tops out at 100, and crosses home plate with so much tilt it’s ridiculous. His slider is 90. Just listening to hitters talk about him, I’d say his stuff tops the charts.” Source: ESPN.com (Buster Olney, 3/4/2007) Joe Nelson (2001 2013) Report: “Nelson’s success is based on control and deception with a low-90s fastball, plus some off-speed pitches highlighted by a change-up one scout calls a ‘Vulcan’ pitch.” Source: Kansas City Star (Sam Mellinger, 9/4/2006) Jimmy Newberry (Negro Leagues) Description: “He had more pitches than Satchel Paige. Knuckleball, screwball, sinker, dipsy-doo — that was an overhand drop — and he had a good fastball, too. Could make it run in, make it run out.” Source: interview with Artie Wilson (Rob Neyer, 6/30/2004) Hal Newhouser Newhouser: “I have never thrown a knuckle ball during a regular ball game because I have never had the right opportunity to use it.” Source: Pitching to Win (Hal Newhouser, 1948) Fred Newman (1962 1967) Key Pitch: Sinker Source: The Sporting News (8/12/1967, Ross Newhan) Phil Niekro Note: While pitching a shutout and notching his 300th win on October 6, 1985, Niekro didn’t throw a single knuckleball until the last batter, when he struck out Jeff Burroughs on three knucklers to end the game. Prior to Burroughs, Niekro “used an assortment of curveballs, screwballs, sinking fastballs and his blooper-type slip pitches.” Source: The Sporting News (10/14/1985, Moss Klein) Fernando Nieve (2006 2010) Report: “For all the questions and pre-game hand-wringing about Fernando Nieve’s secondary pitches, the weapons that ruined his spot start were his primary ones. He could not command his fastball. He hung his main complementary pitch, a slider, for Corey Hart’s first-inning grand slam. So the fledgling curveball and changeup combination did not matter. Source: Newark Star-Ledger (Andy McCullough, 5/30/2010) Fred Norman Scout Hugh Alexander, 1978: “Fred Norman’s got a screwball now because he can’t throw as hard as he used to. But he’s a battler, and when he’s on — unbeatable.” Source: Sport (October 1978, Mark Ribowsky) Win Noyes (1913 1919) Key Pitch: Spitball Source: Chicago Tribune (7/16/1910) Billy O’Dell O’Dell: “I was a fastball pitcher. I had good control and threw a lot of hard sliders, but basically I was a fastball pitcher.” Source: SF Giants: An Oral History (Mike Mandel, 1979) Casey Stengel: “That young man throws a fast ball, a slider, and a mysterious pitch from Mexico.” Source: Dell Sports Baseball Stars (Feb. 1959) (Above supplements O’Dell’s entry in book. And yes, that “mysterious pitch from Mexico” was probably a spitball.) Steve Olin (1989 1992) Pitch Selection: 1. Sinking Fastball 2. Slider 3. Change Note: Olin was a submariner, and learned his change-up from Dan Quisenberry. Source: The Scouting Report: 1993 Wayne Osborne (1935 1936) Fact: Thanks to a childhood accident that included a blasting cap and a hot stove, Osborne’s pitching hand included a mangled thumb and an index finger missing its upper third. Source: The Sporting News (3/14/1935; photo included) Injury Report: “Wayne Osborne, right-handed pitcher of the Missions, left the mound in the third inning the other day, thinking he had pulled a muscle in his back. An examination showed that a veterbra was out of place. He suffered the same kind of an injury last year and now has two vertebrae that pop in and out in an annoying manner.’ Source: The Sporting News (Ed. R. Hughes, 9/3/1936) Pat Osburn (1974 1975) Osburn: “I wouldn’t think of myself as a fastball-slider pitcher. I had a pretty good moving fastball away from right-handers. It would run away and sink. And then I would throw a four-seam fastball if I ever wanted to try to come in or up on anybody, so the ball wouldn’t tail back over the middle of the plate. Just an assortment. I had a pretty good change-up. I had a pretty good curveball.” Source: Osburn in Cup of Coffee (Rob Trucks, 2002) Alberto Osorio (Panamanian Winter League) Memory: “Alberto Osorio was a fine pitcher. Very dependable. A great human being, and a very nice man. He threw just under 90. His control was extraordinary.” Source: Dave Roberts in Memories of Winter Ball (Lou Hernández, 2013) Stubby Overmire Hal Newhouser: “As we said before, a change-of-pace pitch, or a slow ball, is absolutely essential for any pitcher. Stubby Overmire, of the Detroit Tigers, uses it as his main ‘stock in trade’.” Source: Pitching to Win (Hal Newhouser, 1948) Henry Owens (2006 2007) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball (mid-90s) 2. Slider Source: The Sporting News (5/14/2007, Brendan Roberts) Charlie Pabor (National Association 1871 1875) Description: “Pabor’s pitching is marked by speed, and a tolerable command of the ball when he does not go in solely for pace; besides which, he imparts a curve to the ball in his delivery–peculiar to most left-handed pitchers–which renders it necessary for his opponents to watch the ball closely after it leaves his hand, or before they are aware of it it is close upon their hands, instead of coming to the point of the bat they want it.” Source: New York Sunday Mercury (9/13/1868) Jim Palmer Ron Luciano: “The thing that has made Jim Palmer a Hall of Fame pitcher is the movement on his pitches. Sometimes his ball moved so much I’d swear it had to be a Wiffle Ball. Palmer throws what I call a positive fastball. Ever batter was positive he could hit it. But as soon as he started his swing that ball would jump, or dive, or zip outside. He was one of those pitchers against whom a batter would go hitless in four at bats and think they’d had a good game.” Source: The Umpire Strikes Back (Luciano & David Fisher, 1982) Lowell Palmer (1969 1974) Pitches: 1. Fastball (80%) 2. Curve 3. “small” Slider 4. Change Source: Palmer in The Sporting News (Carl Guymon, 6/30/1973; according to article, slider and change-up just developing in ’73) Jonathan Papelbon (2005 2013) Pitches: 1. Fastball (97) 2. Splitter 3. Slider Source: ESPN The Magazine (Peter Gammons, 5/8/2006) Report: “Papelbon features a fastball that often hits 96 mph, a vicious slider that comes in at 89 and a split-finger that dives at 90.” Source: The Sporting News (Mike Berardino, 6/23/2006) Report: “He threw Jonny Gomes a ‘slutter.’ That’s what Jonathan Papelbon calls his new pitch — a combination cut fastball and slider. The new pitch, as Papelbon was explaining it near his locker, had reporters in stitches. . . But Papelbon was serious. He spoke about how he throws it with his palm out and how he doesn’t ‘pronate through the ball’ when he throws it. He was very serious. He said it wasn’t a true slider or a cutter because of the angle at which the ball travels.” Source: Boston.com (Nick Cafardo, 8/22/2007) Kevin Millar: “Pap’s got that four-seam life on his fastball, that little oomph at the end, that you just can’t teach. And like that’s not enough, he has a devastating splitter. Pap’s split is the best in the league.” Source: Sports Illustrated (Tom Verducci, 10/1/2007) Chan Ho Park Report: “The chances of RHP Chan Ho Park sticking with the Rangers coulud hinge on whether he’s able to master the two-seam fastball. The team doesn’t want him to rely so heavily on the four-seamer. Park has shown he still can be effective if he keeps the ball down, but he doesn’t have the velocity to get away with high pitches.” Source: The Sporting News (3/25/2005, Robert Falkoff) Roy Parmelee Catcher Harry Danning: “Boy, he was tough to handle. He had terrific stuff, but there were times when he just couldn’t control it and there was no telling where that ball was going when it left his hand.” Source: Baseball Magazine (John Drebinger, March 1950) Rube Parnham (1916 1917) Fritz Maisel: “Rube didn’t have anything really spectacular. One of his standby pitches was a low fast one between the belt and the knees. Most batters dribbled that one on the ground. another was a fast, inside pitch which seemed — so help me — to shoot up as it crossed the plate. Batters popped that one up. His change of pace was what he called his ‘nickel curve,’ now known as a slider. It started out to cut the plate and slide off by six inches. Usually the batters didn’t hit this one at all.” Source: The Baseball Research Journal, Number 24 (SABR, 1995) Note: Parnham pitched just briefly in the majors, but starred for the International League’s Baltimore Orioles in the early 1920s. Bill Parsons (1971 1974) Pitches: 1. Fastball 2. Change 3. Curveball Sources: Christian Science Monitor (9/16/1971); Wes Stock in The New York Times (Michael Strauss, 8/5/1972) Roy Partlow (Negro Leagues) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Drop Ball 3. Curve Source: Black Baseball in Pittsburgh (Larry Lester and Sammy J. Miller, 2001) Claude Passeau Ted Williams: “Claude Passeau was the pitcher. He was having a great year with Chicago. He had a fastball that he spun just a little bit. It was kind of like a slider, but nobody that I know of was actually throwing a slider then.” Source: Terwilliger Bunts One (Wayne Terwilliger w/Nancy Peterson & Peter Boehm, 2006) Joe Pate Umpire Dusty Boggess: “Pate threw only three pitches – the fast ball, knuckler, and the spitball.” Source: Kill the Ump! (Boggess as told to Ernie Helm, 1966) Max Patkin (Minor Leagues) Patkin: “I wanted to be a big league pitcher. Could have been one. Had this terrific windup. Kicked high. Higher than Juan Marichal ever kicked. Higher than the Radio City Music Hall Rockettes ever kicked. I’d rock back and throw my left leg high in the air and the batter would stare at that and whoosh, I’d throw my fastball right by him. They didn’t have radar guns in those days but I knew I threw 90, 92 MPH. I didn’t always know where the pitch was going, but it got there in a hurry.” Source: The Clown Prince of Baseball (Patkin and Stan Hochman, 1994) Note: In 1941, Patkin’s only full season before he got hurt and then went into the service, he pitched in the Wisconsin State League and went 10-8 with 134 strikeouts, 94 walks, and 13 wild pitches in 178 innings. Steve Peek (1941) Report: “Peek showed McCarthy a baffling knuckle ball in addition to a good curve and fast ball.” Source: St. Petersburg Times (Stan Witwer, 3/6/1941) Mike Pelfrey (2006 2013) Pelfrey: “I worked a lot on my breaking pitches during spring training, and it has paid off. The big difference has been my split-finger fastball. That was the secondary pitch I’d been missing. When hitters see me throwing my secondary pitch for strikes, my fastball becomes that much better.” Source: The Sporting News (5/24/2010) Orlando Peña Memory: “Orlando Peña was our best pitcher. He was a hard thrower, with a three-quarters delivery. Peña had a good sinker. He did not waste pitches. Peña always went right after the hitters. Source: Leo Posada in Memories of Winter Ball (Lou Hernández, 2013) Ramon Peña (1989) Report: “He threw a lot of breaking balls. Slider, slider, slider.” Source: Tigers broadcaster Rod Allen (FSN Detroit, 7/20/2007) Joel Peralta (2005 2013) Pitches: 1. Fastball (low-90s) 2. Splitter 3. Slider 4. Change Sources: The Sporting News (8/26/2005, Mike Scarr); The FutureAngels Blog (Stephen C. Smith, 5/26/2005 entry); Rally Monkey.com (6/24/2005, Mike DiGiovanna in L.A. Times) Troy Percival Report: “His velocity is still coming back, and while he’ll never again hit 97 mph, his heater now sits in the low 90s. ‘When I tried to come back with the Tigers last year,’ he says, I couldn’ get past 84.” Source: ESPN The Magazine (8/27/2007, Tim Kurkjian) Glen Perkins (2006 2013) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball (88-92) 2. Changeup 3. Hard Curve Source: The Sporting News (Kelly Thesier, 4/23/2007) John Perkovich (Minors 1946-1951) Ed Mickelson: “Johnny Perkovich was the hardest thrower in the league, with good control and an excellent curve ball … John hurt his arm after that season and never reached his full potential.” Source: Out of the Park (Mickelson, 2007; describes Perkovich in 1947) Ron Perranoski Report: “Some have thought that because Ron Perranoski was first spoken of as a ‘long man’ in the bull pen, he couldn’t have much of a fast ball. But he does, whenever he wants to throw it. It all depends on whether the long or short haul is indicated. Examine his strike-out record, for example …” Source: Ron Perranoski: Southpaw Rookie Makes Good (entry in The 1961 Dodger Family booklet series, published by Union Oil) Gary Peters Peters: “A curve and slider don’t go along real good together. You’re going to have one good and one just okay. And that’s the way I was. I learned the curveball, but my curveball was always slow, just an okay pitch, not a great pitch. My slider was my good breaking ball. Everything I threw was two-seam, but you just released it a little differently to make it sail in on a right-hander as left-handed pitcher, because my other pitch sunk and tailed away. If you didn’t have something inside they’d crowd the plate.” Source: The Starting Pitcher (Rob Trucks, 2005) Ray Peters (1970) Pitch Selection: 1. Overhand Curve 2. Fastballs (two-seam, four-seam) 3. Slider Source: Peters in Cup of Coffee (Rob Trucks, 2002) Andy Pettitte Report: “Roger Clemens used a slider at the start of his career and learned his splitter on a golf outing with the former Cy Young award winner Mike Scott. Clemens taught the pitch to Pettitte in the winter of before the 2002 season, when the two were teammates with the Yankees. Pettitte threw it that spring with great success. But three starts into the regular season, he injured his elbow and missed two months. Although the injury occurred on a fastball, Pettitte never threw a splitter again.” Source: The New York Times (Tyler Kepner, 3/4/2007) Scouting Report: “Andy Pettitte has morphed into a different guy. He’s not able to overpower anybody, but he’s deceptive–hitters can’t see his ball. He’s in and out, up and down with his fastball, and he sells his changeup well.” Source: The Sporting News (author/date missing) Lee Pfund (1945) Description: “Lee came at hitters from several different angles and used a big windup. [Mickey] Owen helped him with his pitching motion.” Source: Hardball on the Home Front (Craig Allen Cleve, 2004) Ron Piche (1960 1966) Scouting Report: “Good fast sinking fast ball, throwing over hand curve now and then but his money pitch was his sinker. Good control.” Source: Eddie Stanky (April 1962) Bill Pierro (1950) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Curve Note: Pierro threw sidearm. Source: Pierro in Cup of Coffee (Rob Trucks, 2002) Joel Pineiro (2000 2011) Pineiro: “Relying on the sinkerball has been the biggest change. Duncan talked and talked to me, getting me to trust in it. It’s worked. After I said earlier in the season that I wished I had done this before, our bullpen coach, Marty Mason, told me he was going to cut out that quote and show it to younger pitchers in spring training.” Source: The Sporting News (Stan McNeal, 10/12/2009) Taylor Phillips (1956 1963) Report: “Phillips’ principal pitching weapons are exceptional speed, an acceptable curve and change-up and two ‘extra’ pitches — a knuckleball and a sinker. Root taught him the sinker this year, and the pitch has become an important part of his repertoire.” Source: The Sporting News (Bob Wolf, 8/22/1956) Bud Podbielan (1949 1959) Key Pitch: “magical curve” Source: Ed Mickelson in Out of the Park (Mickelson, 2007) Johnny “Specs” Podgajny (1940 1946) Report: “He was a right-handed pitcher with excellent control, but not very fast. He didn’t hae a great curveball either. But he made the opposition hit his pitch.” Source: Danny Litwhiler: Living the Baseball Dream (Litwhiler w/Jim Sargent, 2006) Pitches: 1. Curve 2. Change of Pace 3. Fastball Comment: “Podgajny is not used regularly as a starter, because he doesn’t hold his ‘stuff’ over nine innings. But for four, five or six rounds he’s tops and a marvelous competitor in the pinch. Specs has fair speed, a fine curve, great change of pace and, above all, amazing control. When Johnny walks a batter, it’s an event.” Source: The Sporting News (8/23/1945, Hugh Trader, Jr.); this item appeared after the vast majority of Podgajny’s major-league career, as he spent all of 1944, 1945, and most of 1946 in the minors. Johnny Podres Report: “Johnny Podres’s change of pace is his most famed delivery and, in some ways, his most effective one. Larry Goetz, who has done some umpiring in his time, once took time out to wonder why Podres practically ignored this gift of his in small ball parks. ‘There’s no reason why he shouldn’t win twenty games,’ said Goetz on that occasion. ‘He’s got the best change in baseball, and the other stuff to go with it.’ ” Source: Johnny Podres: Dean of the Dodger Southpaws (entry in The 1961 Dodger Family booklet series, published by Union Oil) Scouting Report: “The same. Knows how to pitch and held his stuff through 9 innings better than last year — Pitches ‘around’ certain hitters like Spahn. Should have a good year and will be rough on Cardinals.” Source: Eddie Stanky (April 1962) Comment: “The most common change-up is thrown with three fingers atop the ball, which is jammed far back into the hand… Johnny Podres, who probably possesses the best change-up in baseball today, has extremely short, stubby hands and can’t get the ball back far enough in his hand to use that delivery. Instead, Podres puts pressure on the ball from the middle joints of his first two fingers, and throws with the same general motion he uses for fastballs and curves, but with a stiff wrist.” Source: The Making of a Big League Pitcher (Ed Richter, 1963) Lou Possehl (1946 1952) Description: “He is a magnificently built youngster, with a three-quarter motion that is much like that of George Earnshaw.” Source: The Sporting News (3/10/1948, Stan Baumgartner) Jack Powell Key Pitch, 1904: Spitball Source: Sporting Life (10/15/1904, Francis C. Richter) Willie Powell (Negro Leagues) Powell: “That was my main pitch, my curveball. I had a good one too, if I do have to say so myself. I could put a bucket at home plate and drop my drop ball into it.” Dave Malarcher: “He had a fastball that had a real hop on it, and one of those fade-away curves that would come up like a fastball and would just flutter away. Great.” Alec Radcliff: “He had a good change of pace curveball and a sneaky fastball that would take off, and he would mix it up on them.” Note: Later in his career, Powell learned a screwball from Bullet Rogan, and he also would occasionally cut the baseball. Source for above: The National Pastime (Winter 1985, John Holway) Hub Pruett Babe Ruth: “All I did was swing at his motion. He was an octopus pitcher, one of those guys who throws everything at you except the ball. I told him that with his motion, the way he jerked his arm, he wouldn’t last long and he didn’t.” Source: The Sporting News (Stan Baumgartner, 3/24/1948) Bob Purkey Report: “Some of the hitters who discovered it was futile to swing against him, couldn’t understand his success. They say the ball ‘looks like a grapefruit’ when he heaves it toward the plate, but they can’t seem to meet it solidly. The answer lies in Purkey’s specialty, the sinker. It may float up there looking like a ripe fruit, but it takes a sudden dip and fools even the better hitters.” Source: Dell Sports Baseball Stars (Feb. 1959) J.J. Putz (2003 2013) Pitches 1. Fastball (98) 2. Slider 3. Splitter Source: Sporting News Baseball 2007 Pitches: 1. Fastball (95-98) 2. Splitter (high-80s) Source: ESPN The Magazine (Luke Cyphers, 9/10/2007) Ewald Pyle (1939 1945) Key Pitch: Knuckleball Source: Source: The Sporting News (3/25/1943, Shirley Povich) Brad Radke Pitches, 2004: 1. Fastball (89-91) 2. Change (76-78) 3. Curve Scouting Report: “Radke moves the fastball around, inside and outside. He uses that pitch to set up his changeup. He clearly is willing to throw that pitch at any time, in any count. Radke really does not throw his curveball very often. Mixing speeds, hitting spots, maintaining poise. That’s how Brad Radke pitches, and that’s has been how he has remained successful.” Source: Seth Speaks (8/18/2004) Radke: “My velocity is way down, so I really have to focus more on pitching. I have to hit my spots, so my command has been better. I think my changeup has gotten better because it’s so slow.” Source: ESPN The Magazine (Tim Kurkjian, 9/11/2006; Radke spent much of the 2006 season pitching with a tear in the labrum of his pitching shoulder.) Tom Qualters (1953 1958) Pitch Selection: 1. Sinking Fastball 2. Curveball Source: Qualters in Baseball’s Bonus Babies (Brent Kelly, 2006) Ken Raffensberger Note: Raffensberger credited Hollis Thurston for teaching him to throw a down-breaking curve in 1943, and Gabby Hartnett for teaching him to throw a slow curve as a change of pace in 1940. Source: The Sporting News (6/29/1944, Bill Dooly) Fred Rath (1998) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Curve 3. “Runner” Source: Rath in Cup of Coffee (Rob Trucks, 2002) Ken Ray (2006 2007) Pitches: 1. Fastball (95) 2. Splitter-changeup Source: ESPN The Magazine (Travis Haney, 6/19/2006) Steve Ratzer (1980 1981) Pitch Selection: 1. Sinker 2. Slider Source: Ratzer in Cup of Coffee (Rob Trucks, 2002) Jeff Reardon Description: “He didn’t have great stuff, but he was a gutsy guy, he worked fast, and he really went after the hitters. When he pitched, his arm dropped down from the side a little and the ball would pretty much stay at that level. When he’d get it in just the right spot, it would ride in a little bit on the hitter. The hitter would swing and miss, making it look like Reardon was throwing really hard. Other times he’d come in with a dinky little curve ball that fooled them.” Source: Twins coach Wayne Terwilliger in Twig Bunts One (Terwilliger w/Nancy Peterson & Peter Boehm, 2006) Mark Redman (1999 2008) Pitches: 1. Fastball (82-85) 2. Curveball 3. Changeup Report: “Redman is a finesse pitcher, relying on location to be effective because his overall stuff is below average. Pushes the ball without velocity but is effective when he keeps his pitches down. Continually changes speeds and has a good idea what he wants to do. Likes to throw his curve to righthanders and has a good fading change. Changes his arm slot against lefthanders if ahead in the count. Hides the ball well and is deceptive but must stay away from the center of the plate.” Source: The Baseball Register & Fantasy Handbook: 2006 Edition (published 2005) Report: After a late-August 2006 shutout of the Twins, “Redman said 60 percent of his pitches were cutters,” a pitch he’d just recently learned from Royals pitching coach Bob McClure.” Source: ESPN.com game story (8/29/2006) Hal Reniff (1961 1967) Pitches: 1. Running Fastball 2. Hard Curve 3. Change (occasional) Source: Sweet Seasons (Dom Forker, 1990) Memory: “He had a natural drift to his fastball, a little like Mariano Rivera. That was his pitch. He wasn’t overpoweringly fast, but he had his movement.” Source: Jim Bouton interviewed by Rob Neyer (10/5/2013) Bob Reynolds (1969 1975) Pitches: 1. Fastball 2. Slider 3. Change Source: 1974 Pitcher Performance Handbook (Ronald H. Lewis, 1974) Reynolds: “A guy who can throw hard, for strikes, five or six days in a row, is valuable. It took me a long time to realize that. I’m 26.” Source: The Sporting News (10/13/1973, Doug Brown) Dennis Ribant Key Pitch: Slider Ribant: “I got away with my curve in Class D but I use a slider now instead of a curve. I’d throw maybe three good curves, then one that wouldn’t break and would really get tagged. I’ve always had control. Now I have a sinker, a fast ball and a change-up taught to me by Warren Spahn when he was a Met in 1964 and polished up by Harvey Haddix, who is Met pitching coach now. Control does it up here. I’m not overpoweringly fast. My slider’s good when I’m able to keep it down… I go for the corners, using my slider to break low for the ‘out-pitch’.” Source: Baseball Digest (Charles Dexter, January 1967) (Above supplements, and perhaps should replace, Ribant’s entry in book.) Denny Riddleberger (1970 1972) Riddleberger: “I was a sidearm pitcher, and my best pitches were my sinkerball and change-up. I did throw a sidearm curve, like a Little League curveball, that broke about three-and-a-half feet. But it was a surprise pitch, I didn’t use it too often.” Source: Interview with Riddleberger (1/27/2008, Rob Neyer) David Riske (1999 2009) Report: “He has a fastball they call a ‘disappearing fastball’ because of his low release point. He probably throws about 90 percent fastballs, but guys still swing through them. He’s an aggressive guy who will challenge you.” Source: Lou Merloni in The Boston Herald (1/24/2006, Jeff Horrigan) Mariano Rivera Technique: “Rivera can demonstrate how he holds the cutter, with a stiff wrist and his index and middle fingers on the right side of the seams. But he cannot teach it, because he cannot explain how it works.” Source: The New York Times (3/4/2007) Chad Moeller: “Easiest guy I’ve ever caught. Plain and simple, the easiest guy I’ve ever caught. You know where the ball’s going to be every time. And it’s just amazing that everybody knows what’s coming, and nobody’s going to square it up. He’s thrown the same pitch over and over and over, and nobody’s done anything with it yet. You’re just picking a side. Not the pitch, you’re just picking a side. He has a two-seamer, which he started using for right-handers a little bit, just when I think he really wanted to embarrass them. But he could always lock the right-handers up because he’d throw the ball right at them, and they’d jump out of the way and it was strike three. It’d come right in the front door.” Source: The New York Times (Tyler Kepner, 2/28/2010) Bert Roberge (1979 1986) Pitches: 1. Fastball 2. Slider 3. Splitter (beginning in 1980) Note: Roberge learned his split-finger fastball from Bruce Sutter. Source: The Sporting News (8/9/1980, Harry Shattuck) Robin Roberts Ralph Kiner: “The greatest fastball I ever faced was thrown by Hall of Famer Robin Roberts. It wasn’t the fastest. Rex Barney of the Dodgers owned that. He threw in the vicinity of 100 miles per hour, but it was straight. However, Roberts, like Sandy Koufax, had great movement on the ball. It would literally hop over your bat. Source: Kiner’s Korner (Ralph Kiner with Joe Gergen, 1987) Humberto Robinson (1955 1960) Memory: “Humberto Robinson was our best pitcher… Humberto came from the side and his ball moved everywhere.” Source: Dave Roberts in Memories of Winter Ball (Lou Hernández, 2013) Eduardo Rodriguez (1973 1979) Key Pitch: Fastball Darrell Porter: “He’s so wicked. It’s unbelievable. Even when he throws it down the chute, they don’t know which way it’s going to break. He’s tough.” Source: The Milwaukee Journal (4/27/1976, Mike Gonring) Note: For at least some period of time, Rodriguez was referred to as “the Double Play Machine” in the newspapers. Ed Roebuck Memory: “Ed Roebuck would just go out there and throw his game and win. He was a real good pitcher. I would go out to the mound and tell him, Eddie, you are throwing too hard, and he would laugh, because you never tell a pitcher that. Roebuck threw sinkers. You had to get the right speed on the ball or the ball would not sink.” Source: Catcher Norm Sherry in Memories of Winter Ball (Lou Hernández, 2013) Update: “Roebuck says there is no trace of the soreness which rendered him useless to the ball club the last two years after his sensational relief job for the ’57 Brooklyn team. ‘My shoulder kept me from throwing an overhand fast ball and curve,’ he recalls sadly. ‘I had little left but a sidearm sinker. But now I can cut loose with an overhand delivery without any trouble whatsoever.’ ” Source: Ed Roebuck: Ace of the Bullpen Again (entry in Meet the Dodger Family booklet series, published by Union Oil in 1960) Minnie Rojas (1966 1968) Rojas: “I got just three pitches, a fast ball, a curve and the slider. Once in a while I come in with a knuckler, and I can control it, too.” Source: Baseball Digest (Charles Dexter, June 1968) Pitches: 1. Slider 2. Fastball 3. Curve Bill Rigney: “He throws control.” Source: Major League Baseball 1968 (Jack Zanger) Enrique Romo Key Pitch: Screwball Report: “Enrique Romo is the senor with the screwball, which is the core of a vast pitching repertoire, even unto accusations of spitballing.” Source: The Sporting News (Hy Zimmerman, 7/30/1977) Normie Roy (1950) Pitch Selection: 1. Fastball 2. Curve 3. Change (rarely) Note: Roy generally threw three-quarters but occasionally threw his curve overhand. Source: Roy in interview with Rob Neyer (1/30/2004) Jorge Rubio (1966 1967) Report: “Red manager Dave Bristol was startled to learn that rookie hurler Jorge Rubio, obtained from the Angels in the Sammy Ellis trade, is ambidextrous. Bristol first learned of it when Rubio, list as righthander, fired a ball lefthanded from the outfield during batting practice. Rubio has never pitched a game lefthanded in pro ball. ‘But,’ he said, ‘I pitched two games lefthanded around home in semi-pro ball before I joined my team in the Winter Mexican League. And I managed to win both of them.’ ‘He throws good enough lefthanded for me to take a good look at him,’ said Bristol.” Source: The Sporting News (Earl Lawson, 3/16/1968; Rubio never pitched in the majors again.) Dutch Ruether Roger Peckinpaugh: “Ruether is much better this year than he was while performing in the National league and, besides, has added a most effective knuckle ball to his repertoire since joining us.” Source: Peckinpaugh’s World Series column in The Washington Post (10/10/25) (Above supplements Ruether’s entry in book, which is lacking specifics.) Bob Rush Warren Spahn: “Bob Rush relies on fast balls, and a change and sinker combination.” Source: Dell Sports Baseball Stars (Joe Reichler, Feb. 1959) Babe Ruth Memory: “In those days left-handed pitchers were my cousins. I didn’t think one lived who could strike me out — but Ruth did in that series, twice. He had everything — great fast ball, one of those very sharp, down-breaking curves, control, pitching savvy, everything.” Source: Geeorge Cutshaw in the Portland Oregonian (L.H. Gregory column, 7/16/1958)