What Are The Best Pitches To Throw In Baseball?

Baseball is a game that requires a unique combination of physical skill and mental strategy. While every player on the field plays a vital role, it is the pitcher who holds the most significant responsibility.

A pitcher’s performance can make or break a game, and mastering different pitching styles and techniques is essential for success.

In this article, we will explore the top pitching styles in baseball and provide tips and techniques for mastering them.

We will delve into the mechanics of each pitch, including the 4-seam fastball, 2-seam fastball, curveball, slider, and changeup, and examine the best pitches in baseball history.

Whether you are a professional pitcher seeking to improve your game or a casual fan looking to deepen your understanding of the sport, mastering the best pitches in baseball is a critical skill to have.

Key Takeaways

  • Pitching styles in baseball can greatly impact a batter’s performance.
  • The top five pitching styles include the 4-seam fastball, 2-seam fastball, curveball, slider, and changeup.
  • Breaking deliveries like the 12-6 curve and slurves can increase the chances of strikeouts.
  • The best pitches in baseball history include Nolan Ryan’s fastball, Mariano Revera’s cutter, Randy Johnson’s slider, Sandy Koufax’s curveball, and Trevor Hoffman’s changeup.

Pitching Basics: What Are The Best Pitches To Throw In Baseball?

What Are The Best Pitches To Throw In Baseball?

The fundamentals of pitching in baseball, including mastering different styles and techniques, are critical components of a pitcher’s success, as previously discussed.

Pitching grips and delivery techniques are two critical areas that pitchers must master to become successful. Pitching grips refer to the way a pitcher holds the ball, which can affect the ball’s movement and speed. There are different pitching grips, including the four-seam fastball grip, the two-seam fastball grip, the curveball grip, and the changeup grip.

Delivery techniques, on the other hand, refer to the pitcher’s motion when throwing the ball. The delivery technique can affect the pitch’s accuracy and speed, as well as the pitcher’s stamina and injury risk.

To become a successful pitcher, it is essential to master these fundamentals of pitching. This requires technical proficiency, a deep knowledge of the different styles and techniques, and a lot of practice.

Pitchers must also be able to adjust their style and technique depending on the situation and the batter they are facing. With dedication and hard work, pitchers can master the various pitching grips and delivery techniques and become some of the best pitchers in the game.

Best Pitches in History

Among the most iconic pitches in baseball history are Nolan Ryan’s blazing fastball, Mariano Rivera’s deceptive cutter, Randy Johnson’s devastating slider, Sandy Koufax’s deadly curveball, and Trevor Hoffman’s elusive changeup.

Nolan Ryan’s fastball was known for its incredible speed, with some reports claiming it crossed the 100 mph mark even in his 40s. Ryan also holds the all-time record for strikeouts in MLB history, with 5,714 strikeouts over the course of his career.

Mariano Rivera’s cutter, on the other hand, was able to surprise and confuse hitters, leading to a career with a 2.23 ERA. Randy Johnson’s slider was challenging to play with confidence due to its downward action and three-quarter move.

Sandy Koufax, one of the most dominant pitchers of his time, was able to produce devastating and deadly curves with his high to downward delivery, resulting in a career with a 1.95 ERA and 1444 strikeouts.

Finally, Trevor Hoffman’s changeup was able to refuse to reach at the right time, forcing hitters to lose a strike, and he was able to ensure 601 career saves.

To further explore the top pitches in baseball history, the following table provides a summary of each pitcher’s legacy and notable pitching techniques:

PitcherLegacyNotable Pitching Techniques
Nolan RyanAll-time record for strikeouts in MLB history.Blazing fastball, with some reports claiming it crossed the 100 mph mark even in his 40s.
Mariano RiveraCareer with a 2.23 ERA.Deceptive cutter, able to surprise and confuse hitters.
Randy JohnsonDominant pitcher with 5 Cy Young awards.Devastating slider with a downward action and three-quarter move.
Sandy KoufaxOne of the most dominant pitchers of his time.Deadly curveball with a high to downward delivery.
Trevor HoffmanEnsured 601 career saves.Elusive changeup, able to refuse to reach at the right time.

Each of these pitchers has left a lasting mark on the game of baseball, with their unique pitching styles and techniques becoming legendary in the sport.

Nolan Ryan’s legacy is defined by his blazing fastball, while Mariano Rivera’s deceptive cutter and Randy Johnson’s devastating slider have left hitters guessing for years.

Sandy Koufax’s deadly curveball and Trevor Hoffman’s elusive changeup round out the list of the best pitches in baseball history, showcasing the importance of mastering different pitching techniques to become a dominant pitcher.

Tips for MLB The Show 21

One effective strategy for improving pitching performance in MLB The Show 21 is to constantly change pitching positions and prioritize the use of sliders.

By changing the position of the pitcher, the batter’s perspective changes, making it harder for them to anticipate the pitch. This can lead to more swings and misses, increasing the chances of striking the batter out.

Additionally, sliders are a valuable pitch to master in the game as they can be difficult for the batter to hit due to their lateral movement. Prioritizing the use of sliders can put pressure on the batter to make a decision quickly, leading to more swings and misses.

To improve accuracy, it is important to choose the right velocity and break for each pitch. This can be achieved by experimenting with different speeds and movements in practice mode.

Additionally, using a complete arsenal of pitching techniques, such as changeups and curves, can keep the batter guessing and increase the chances of getting them out.

Finally, it is crucial to avoid throwing the ball in the middle of the strike zone, as this gives the batter an opportunity to make solid contact and potentially hit a home run.

By following these pitching strategies, players can improve their performance and dominate in MLB The Show 21.

What are the best pitches to throw in baseball?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the difference between a slider and a curveball in baseball pitching?

The slider and curveball are both breaking pitches used in baseball pitching, with differences in their spin rate and trajectory. The slider has a tighter spin and a lateral break, while the curveball has a slower spin and a more vertical drop. The advantages and disadvantages of each pitch depend on the pitcher’s style and the situation.

Can a pitcher use more than one pitching style in a single game?

Yes, a pitcher can use more than one pitching style in a single game. Switching styles strategically can provide advantages such as keeping batters off balance and preventing them from anticipating the next pitch.

How do different weather conditions affect pitching in baseball?

Weather conditions can impact pitching in baseball, specifically wet ball handling and wind resistance techniques. Pitchers must adapt by adjusting their grip and delivery to maintain control and accuracy of their pitches.

What is the most effective way to grip a changeup pitch?

Proper finger positioning and wrist movement are crucial to mastering the changeup pitch. Tips for throwing effective changeups in different game situations include altering the pitcher’s arm speed and using a three-finger grip for better control and movement.

How do pitchers train their arm strength and endurance for long games?

Pitchers can train their arm strength and endurance through various arm exercises and recovery methods. Proper nutrition and hydration are also crucial for optimal pitching performance.


In conclusion, mastering the best pitches in baseball is a crucial skill for any pitcher, whether amateur or professional. Understanding the fundamentals of different pitching styles and techniques can give a player an edge on the diamond.

From the 4-seam fastball to the curveball, slider, and changeup, each pitch has its own unique advantages and challenges.

Additionally, studying the history of baseball pitching can provide valuable insights into the evolution of the game and the strategies used to outsmart batters.

Finally, for those looking to improve their virtual pitching skills, following tips and tricks for MLB, The Show 21 can help elevate gameplay and enhance the overall enjoyment of the game.

With dedication and practice, anyone can master the art of pitching and become a formidable force on the baseball field.

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