Texas Rangers: Yu Darvish Teases Ambidexterity with Left-Handed Pitches
It’s one thing to pitch with your dominant arm. It’s a whole new ballgame to pitch with your opposite arm. Texas Rangers right-handed pitcher Yu Darvish recently flashed his athleticism with a number of impressive pitches thrown left handed.
With the new season on the horizon, anything can happen, even a right-handed starting pitcher throwing left-handed. Towards the middle of last season, Yu Darvish filmed himself throwing left-handed and recently posted his ambidexterity via Instagram. The video features a wicked curve and slider thrown with his opposite arm.
Article continues below ...
A video posted by Yu Darvish (@darvishsefat11) on Dec 30, 2016 at 3:14am PST
Darvish broke into the major leagues with the Texas Rangers in 2012 after seven seasons in the Japan Pacific League. Including his last six seasons in Japan, Darvish posted at least 10 wins per season from 2006-2014. As a rookie, Darvish went 16-9 and posted a career-best 2.83 ERA the following season. Although he finished third for the 2012 Rookie of the Year and second in the 2013 Cy Young Award voting, he is one of the top undecorated right-handed pitchers in the game.
However, an elbow injury that shortened 2014 eventually warranted Tommy John surgery and Darvish missed all of 2015. He returned to the rotation on May 28 and bounced back to a 7-5 record with a 3.41 ERA in 17 starts.
What’s Stopping Him?
Although his left-handed tease is intriguing, Darvish is not the first to flirt with the possibility of being a major league switch-pitcher. Pat Venditte immediately caught major league attention when he debuted in 2015 as the first full-time switch-pitcher in baseball history. Unfortunately, his career has yet to live up to the hype.
Within a year of being traded by the New York Yankees, Venditte debuted with the Oakland Athletics on June 5, 2015. While he eventually split 2016 with the Toronto Blue Jays and Seattle Mariners, Venditte failed to finish his first two seasons with a sub-4.00 ERA.
On top of Venditte’s switch-pitching struggles, Darvish’s phenomenal career hinders the chances of fans seeing him switch-pitch. With his right hand Darvish is one of the best pitchers in baseball and he continued to be successful even after surgery. Regardless, his ability to throw left-handed could join his menacing arsenal of a wide-variety of pitches, ranging in the mid-90s.
Whether or not we will see Darvish utilize any switch-pitches in the next few seasons, it’s fun to dream.
More from Call to the Pen
- Cleveland Indians: Corey Kluber Fends Off Coyote with Fastball11h ago
- San Diego Padres: Chris Cannizzaro Passes Away at 78 Years Old12h ago
- Arizona Diamondbacks Peter O’Brien Still Intrigues with His Power13h ago
- Seattle Mariners: Felix Hernandez Ends Winter League Stint14h ago
- Arizona Diamondbacks Interested in Young Red Sox Catchers16h ago