On Friday night, the Mets' bad-ass knuckleballer pitched 8 innings, allowed 3 hits, 1 walk and notched 10 strikeouts.
Dickey leads the majors in wins at 12-1.
Here's his description of his knuckler:
"The metaphor I would give is that if a traditional knuckleball is a butterfly, mine is more like a butterfly on steroids. It's more like a mosquito or a hummingbird than a butterfly, because of the velocity. It comes in and breaks late at the plate. It darts more and it's in and out of the strike zone. Phil Niekro once told me I had an `angry' knuckleball."
If this cat isn't the starting pitcher for the National League in the All-Star Game, something's messed-up!
It has become kind of a stupid tradition on Twitter for some Tigers' fans to Tweet "Happy Verlander Day" everytime Justin Verlander has a start. They take it for granted that it will result in an automatic win.
Listen, kids, Verlander's a great pitcher - but he's NOT Sandy Koufax.
He, probably, blew his wad last year.
It's highly unlikely that JV will EVER see another AL MVP season. He might get a couple more Cy Youngs...he might even throw a couple more No-nos...but his starts don't guarantee a win.
Verlander needs to learn to not let his ego get in the way of his pitch selection.
Too many times this season JV has followed up a fastball with a faster fastball.
Unless you have crazy-ass late breaking movement on your heater - don't throw your cheese in succession.
Lately, Verlander's line of thinking has been to follow-up a 100 mph heater with a 101 or 102 mph heater. This is not sound methodology. Most of the cats in The Show got there as a result of their ability to turn on a 90+ mph fastball and deliver it to the paying customers 400 feet away! Verlander needs to come to the realization that his heater IS NOT UNHITTABLE!
In the history of baseball, there are ONLY two hurlers who possessed a pitch that was virtually unhittable: Mariano Rivera's cut fastball and Sandy Koufax' curveball.
A 100 mph heater means nothing unless it breaks late - hence the career of Joel Zumaya.
On Friday night, Justin Verlander fell behind in the count several times. This resulted in JV serving-up 3 home runs - two to Desmond Jennings and another to Ben Zobrist. Verlander took the loss as the Rays beat the Tigers 4-2.
It was 'Zim Bear' night at Tropicana Field.
The first 10,000 fans received a stuffed bear in honour of Don Zimmer.
The promotion was so popular that the team has ordered 10,000 more 'Zim Bears' and plan to give them away at a future game!
Leyland even got one...for real!!