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Thread: Unusual Pitcher Deliveries

  1. #1

    Unusual Pitcher Deliveries

    I'm sure this topic has been covered before but, I came across a great photo of Warren Spahn warming up. I started me thinking of odd deliveries. If there has been a thread about this already maybe someone could lead me to it. I would love to see more photos or video of guys like Spahn, Marichal, & Goosage, to name a few odd deliveries off the top of my head. I will be very thankful for any leads.
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    "I had to move my outfielders ten steps to the right, so that after Palmer moves them back five steps to the left, they'll end up in the right place."
    Earl Weaver

  2. #2
    Luis Tiant



    Juan Marichal



    Dizzy Dean



    Bob Feller


  3. #3
    Thanks OleMissCub! The clip of Tiant is unbelievable. He darn near turns completely around! It seems to me the high leg kick was much more common in the past. There must have been a conscience effort on coaches parts the make more compact and efficient deliveries in the last few decades. So how dramatically deferent must these guys throw when working from the stretch?
    "I had to move my outfielders ten steps to the right, so that after Palmer moves them back five steps to the left, they'll end up in the right place."
    Earl Weaver

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    Can't post clips at the moment, but here are some standouts...
    Ted Abernathy
    Kevin Brown
    Paul Derringer
    Dan Quisenberry
    Kent Tekulve
    Carl Mays
    Hideo Nomo
    Dice K
    Ewell "The Whip" Blackwell

  5. #5
    I'll try to find a clip for it, but Orlando Hernandez leg kick where he almost hits himself in the face is a very unusual delivery approach.

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    The Padres had a pitcher in the early 90's named Frank Seminara whose delivery made Tiant seem downright normal.

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    To me, Sid Fernandez always looked a little off. It seemed that he planted his front foot before he even started bringing his arm around.

    Satchel Paige and Clark Griffith stand out to me as guys who would do whatever:
    herky jerky motion
    hesitation
    quick pitch - perhaps Griffith moreso
    many different delivery styles from multiple arm heights
    shadowing the ball - again perhaps Griffith moreso

    Griffith was porported to actually scuff the ball while in his motion. He was also known to bang the ball against his spikes while kneeling on the mound for all to see.

    both had great control as well

  8. #8
    Just one of MANY of Satchel's deliveries:


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    Mike Mussina pitching from the stretch. Not so much for his actual delivery as for the way he bends over before he throws.

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=aBVDLbOC2ig

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    I'm surprised no one's mentioned Walter Johnson. His parallel-to-the-ground arm angle was at the very least unusual, if not unique, particularly for a power pitcher.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5eN7phUZN4k

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    Ewell Blackwell and his whip.

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    Stu Miller, whose head jerk makes Hideki Okajima's look like nothing. Not to mention all the other weird contortions he'd do.

    Aside from Tiant, I know that Dickie Kerr (at least in the Pacific Coast League), Omar Daal, Kewpie Dick Barrett, Alay Soler, and John Pezzulo all turned at least partially around, with Barrett being the most violent.

    Tiny Bonham, Van Lingle Mungo, Frank Smith (the one who pitched in the Federal League), and Claude Jonnard all had very high leg kicks a la Juan Marichal.

    Steve Dalkowski's high school follow-through was absolutely bizarre.

    Sam Nahem's two deliveries were actually somewhat normal, but the fact that he threw exclusively overarm to righty batters and exclusively submarine to lefties has got to be unique.

    Steve Hamilton, normally a sidearmer, would lean backward really far when he delivered his "folly floater" blooper pitch (you can see this on youtube).

    Adrian Hernandez, nicknamed "El Duquecito," had mechanics remarkably similar to Orlando Hernandez.

    Notorious spitballer Raul Sanchez would put his body through "odd contortions" according to one period article, but I've never seen footage of him pitch.

    Kelly Wunsch had arguably the world's worst follow-through to his delivery.

    Joe Smith and Ehren Wassermann have extremely deceptive deliveries that involve looking like they're about to deliver submarine, but then popping back up and throwing sidearm. I've been told knuckleballer John Anderson also did this in the Minors, though the Phillies altered his mechanics in the Majors.
    Last edited by Dalkowski110; 04-22-2009 at 03:51 PM.
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  13. #13
    Lindy Mcdaniel made Marichal look stiff

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    My guess is many pitchers threw sidearm at and prior to Walter Johnson's debut.

    Al Hrabosky was a tad unusual on and around the mound.

  15. #15
    No vid's, but Mr. Gumpert had a SICK high leg kick, and a nice hidden delivery:



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    That's a nice clip of Tiant - I noticed that his delivery looks exceedingly normal (and powerful) minus the time the batter is staring at his #23.

    Did he do this spinning around when he first came up?

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    I'd have to submit former Met Sid Fernandez... That left-handed delivery of his was truly funky, especially since he used the same motion to deliver 90+mph heat, and a curveball that probably topped out around 65.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by mordeci View Post
    I'm surprised no one's mentioned Walter Johnson. His parallel-to-the-ground arm angle was at the very least unusual, if not unique, particularly for a power pitcher.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5eN7phUZN4k
    Great video! I never knew The Big Train threw that way. After I watched that one, YouTube flashed a Grover Cleveland Alexander link. Check that one out. This guy had almost no wind up at all!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iC9ItvEf9a0&NR=1
    "I had to move my outfielders ten steps to the right, so that after Palmer moves them back five steps to the left, they'll end up in the right place."
    Earl Weaver

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    Quote Originally Posted by bkmckenna View Post
    My guess is many pitchers threw sidearm at and prior to Walter Johnson's debut.

    Al Hrabosky was a tad unusual on and around the mound.
    Sidearm was very popular until fairly recently. A great many power pitchers from the past threw sidearm. Somebody mentioned Pete Alexander, who had great speed as a young pitcher. I'm pretty sure that Bunning threw sidearm. We have RJ to look at now, of course, and even Pedro unleashed many of his best fastballs from down low.

  20. #20
    Don Larsen's no wind-up is one I always found interesting.

    Carl Mays threw underhanded and would often scrape his knuckles on the mound.

    I wish there was video of Tommy Byrne's kimono pitch. I can't visualize how you could get any speed throwing from behind your back.

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    I remember seeing a photo in about 1958/59 of Bob Rush (Cubs' ace of the 1950s) with the ultimate in high leg kicks. I mean his left leg was damn near perpendicular to the ground!

    May have been in the 1958 or 1959 Street & Smith's Baseball Annual.......

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    Quote Originally Posted by rsuriyop View Post
    He was setting him up for the fastball I think. Great pitch!

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    Quote Originally Posted by jjpm74 View Post
    I'll try to find a clip for it, but Orlando Hernandez leg kick where he almost hits himself in the face is a very unusual delivery approach.
    My son copied El Duque's leg kick in Little League for a few years. I had someone in our Design Dept attach a photo of my son's face (he was missing a few front teeth at the time) onto the body of El Duque from a photo, and we got it framed for my son's 8th birthday.

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    Don't look at it too quickly or too briefly..... the pinstripes from the pants blend in with the pinstripes from the jersey, and it almost appears that the guy has a leg growing out of his left shoulder instead of an arm....

    Orlando Hernandez 2.bmp Orlando Hernandez.bmp
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