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Yu Darvish unveiled a previously unseen pitch in his masterful starts against the Yankees on Tuesday night.

As I was watching the Yu Darvish start against the Yankees, it dawned on me that the Japanese hurler might have more pitches than I was originally led to believe. Those who read this site are aware that I’ve been watching Darvish since his first intra-squad game back in early March, which makes me a Darvish hipster, and an unapologetic one at that. Because of my familiarity with the pitcher, I’ve been able to identify his deep arsenal, one that features both a two- and four-seam fastball, a cutter, two type of curveballs, a slider, a splitter, and a straight-change, but up until tonight’s game against the Yankees, I hadn’t noticed that he was throwing what I’ve seen described as a shuuto, or a reverse slider.

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November 15, 2006 12:00 am

Under The Knife: Matsuzaka and the Gyroball


Will Carroll

The Japanese right-hander may be throwing his famous pitch in the AL next season, but it's just a small part of his repertoire.

Since discovering the pitch back in 2003, I've been on something of a quest to figure it out. Guided by a Japanese text that I can only roughly translate as "The Secret of the Demon Pitch," and that I can't actually read, I have sought to both learn the pitch's nature and to understand the man who has come to embody the pitch, Matsuzaka.

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