Originally Posted by Blitz Dorsey
It was hilarious man. It was as if Chris Welsh had been reading this board. He literally started off the broadcast by saying "There is some debate whether Cingrani throws a slider or a curve. He calls it a slider. I guess we'll find out tonight."
I almost fell out of my chair laughing. The slider/curve debate makes it to the Reds' TV broadcast! I'm not joking. And some of you thought it was just a silly RedsZone thing.
My professional opinion? (OK, my "amateur" opinion.) Cingrani throws a "slurve." I was a pitcher back in the day and this is similar to the breaking ball I threw. Not a true slider, not a true curve. Cingrani calls it a slider, but baseball coaches would call that a "slurve." I had no idea what to call the pitch I threw (accidentally invented it while throwing warm-ups one day) and my coach said "You're throwing a slurve." I was like "a slurve?" I had never heard of that term before. But I've heard it several times since and that's exactly what Cingrani is throwing.
Thank goodness he throws it better than I did. Even better: Thank goodness he's left-handed and throws his fastball about 15 MPH faster than I could. (Hey, I was a decent HS pitcher though.)
PS: He did throw some slurves tonight, Doug. Took him until the 4th inning to throw a good one, but he threw a few of them. The vast majority of his pitches were fastballs (of course) and he threw his change more than his slurve. But he did throw his slurve a few times. He had a real good one in the 4th and Welsh immediately said "That was the best breaking ball of the night by far from Cingrani."
I remember reading a debate once, perhaps in the Neyer/James Guide to Pitchers, about what defines a pitch. Is it defined by how it is thrown or how it moves? Pitches aren't so discrete and consistent in how they behave that such perfectly MECE (mutually exclusive, collectively exhaustive) labels work.
Is it possible that he is throwing the ball using the grip of slider but doing something different with his wrist/release such that it causes more vertical break than it used to?
There's always been talk about Arroyo basically inventing pitches as he goes -- same with many of the Japanese pitchers. Why does it have to be one thing or the other? Why not just say that he throws a breaking ball that tends to move a certain way and be done with it?