Last night the New York Mets ace R.A. Dickey pitched his second one-hitter in a row, blanking the Orioles 5-0 at Citi Field. The pitch that has made Dickey so successful this season is the Knuckleball, which is held so that the ball moves as little as possible coming out of the throwing hand. Because the baseball is not a smooth ball, but a ball with stitching, the movement of the pitch is changed by airflow as the slight spin of the ball changes its trajectory going towards home plate. Dickey is one of the only (if not the only) prominent pitchers that throws a Knuckleball in the Majors.
Before the season, R.A. Dickey published his memoir “Wherever I Wind Up: My Quest for Truth, Authenticity, and the Perfect Knuckleball” (Link to Catalog). At one point a No. 1 draft pick, Dickey’s $810,000 signing bonus was voided when it was discovered that he was missing a key ligament in his elbow. Growing up with an alcoholic mother, subjected to sexual abuse, living in cars as a teen, and dealing with an inability to pitch effectively in the majors, Dickey’s story is one of failure and redemption. Using a pitch as unpredictable as a knuckleball, Dickey has reinvented himself as a pitcher determined to succeed by doing things his own way.
R.A. Dickey’s Favorite Books:
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee (Link to Catalog)
The Sun also Rises - Ernest Hemingway (Link to Catalog)