SportsNation Blog Archives R.A. Dickey
Voting for the 2013 ESPYS Awards is open, and today we're debating the best player in baseball from the past year. Miguel Cabrera pulled off the first Triple Crown in quite some time, but some stats have Mike Trout's 2012 season as far above Cabrera's. R.A. Dickey and David Price were nigh unhittable last season, and Buster Posey won NL MVP in the same year he added another World Series trophy to his case. Who gets your vote?
Knuckleballers are strange. They throw a pitch that looks like it defies physics, but the reality is far worse; it obeys laws of physics that are probably too complex for you (or us!) to understand. When the knuckler is really moving, it's practically a cheat code; when it's not, well, you only have to look as far as R.A. Dickey's disaster of a season to see what happens. Dickey has been roughed up a number of times this season, possibly because of an inability to throw his formerly dominant hard knuckler. A late-career rejuvenation isn't unusual for a knuckleballer, but neither is a sudden loss of effectiveness, which should make Blue Jays fans nervous.
What do you think? Leave your comments below.
All about location?
Moving from the NL to the AL has been held as the downfall of many a pitcher, but again, a pitcher who throws a knuckleball may defy conventional explanations.
For a second consecutive start, reigning NL Cy Young Award winner R.A. Dickey failed to find his elite form from a year ago, getting lit up for eight runs (seven earned) Sunday against the Red Sox. Dickey is pitching in the American League for the first time since 2009 and working with a catcher who is unfamiliar with fielding his trademark hard knuckleball. But an 8.44 ERA wasn't what the Blue Jays were expecting when they signed Dickey to a two-year, $25 million extension this offseason. So are Dickey's troubles just early-season jitters, or a sign of things to come in Toronto?
We so love the knuckleball. It's simultaneously the dumbest and smartest pitch in baseball -- you've got no idea where it will go when you release it, and it's practically impossible to teach, but it changes the whole game from baseball to kind of a weird hybrid of slow-pitch softball and misery. R.A. Dickey took a while to master his knuckler, but it has paid dividends this season, as he threw his second one-hitter in a row Monday night against the Orioles. Dickey leads all of baseball in wins, ERA and strikeouts, which is totally insane and also really awesome. Has he made himself into a perennial ace, or is this just a temporary run of dominance?
A new ace?
You don't usually come into your own as a pitcher in your mid-30s, but Dickey has had a 2.86 ERA since his age-35 season.
Only 22 men have thrown a perfect game in baseball history, but only 10 have thrown consecutive one-hitters. It's a bit of a fluky accomplishment but still incredibly rare.
Are the Mets for real?
The Mets have been a bit of a joke the past few years, but they've had their share of stellar performances this season.