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Names of Baseball Pitches

Learn the names of baseball pitches from Coach Darren Gurney in this Howcast video.


There are a lot of funky names when it comes to talking about baseball pitches. We've all heard of the fast ball, both four-seam and two-seam, curve ball, slider, and change up. But then there are some other ones that some of us may not have heard of, for instance the split finger, also known as the splitter, as known as Mr. Splitty; the screwball, also known as the Scroogie; the cut fast ball, also known as the cut or the cutter, made famous by Mariano Rivera of the New York Yankees, and more recently Roy Hallady of the Philadelphia Phillies.

Some other funky names that go with pitches would be knuckle ball, knuckle curve, and shoe toe, a pitch famous in Japan that acts much like a two-seam fast ball or a screw ball as seen in the movie Mr. Baseball where Tom Selleck travelled from the United States to Japan and could not hit the famous shoe toe. There's also a gyro ball, which is thrown with a spin much like a spiraled football. And then we have the well-known La Lob, which is from Dave LaRoche of the New York Yankees who threw this ephus pitch as we know it.

Another pitch that some people like to toy with is known as the side arm knuckle ball. The fork ball, which is a variation of the split finger fast ball, is thrown deeper in the hand, and the fork ball of course has been mastered by Tim Lincecum of the San Francisco Giants, also mastered by Jack Morris in the mid-1980s of the Detroit Tigers. There's also the palm ball thrown as a four-finger change up, along with of course the circle change up, and the three-finger or trophy change up, and the knuckle curve ball, as well as the side arm knuckle curve ball.

When considering all of these different pitches' names there are two components that we all need to remember as pitchers. One, we must throw all these pitches with the same arm speed and from the same arm slot, otherwise we will tip them off and their hitter will know which pitch it coming. These are a variety of different pitches that we know in baseball.

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