Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Evolution of the Curveball

Whether you believe it was first thrown by Candy Cummings, Fred Goldsmith, or Phonney Martin, the curveball has been giving hitters the "chair" since the 1870's. The curveball has been thrown in as many ways as there have been pitchers who've thrown it. Over the Top, three quarter, submarine, fast, slow, 12 to 6, 1 to 7, and has even spawned pitches such as the screwball, slider, and the lovely slurve.

As long as pitchers have been throwing the curveball, baseball players and fans alike have been naming it. The Curveball has more names than Wilt Chamberlain's Little Black Book and here are a few classics for the ol' number 2:

12 to 6er- named for the action of an over the top curveball, it goes from 12 O'Clock to 6 O'Clock
Bender - your average, run of the mill curveball
Deuce - because the sign for the curveball is usually 2 fingers down from the catcher
Hammer- a hard 12-6 breaking curveball
Hook- named after the trajectory of the curveball
Lord Charles- term for a dominant curveball, usually a dominant 12-6er
Public Enemy Number One- a very good, above average, curveball
Rainbow- a curveball with a high arc to the plate
The Roundhouse- a gradual looping curveball
Uncle Charlie- a good curveball, not as dominant as Lord Charles
Worm Killer- a curveball that hits the dirt before it gets to home plate
Yacker- a good curveball with a big break


GM-Carson said...

I'm a huge Public Enemy fan. When they did "Bring the Noise" with Anthrax, I was in love.

Anonymous said...

I saw them this past year at Bonnaroo with a full backing band. They did the entire "It Takes a Nation of Millions..." from start to finish! Absolutely incredible

tamtam said...

how do you throw a curveball?

GM-Carson said...

Like an adolescent's all in the wrist and your grip.