Sports Lists

Yu Darvish GIF Is as Mesmerizing and Wonderful as Texas Rangers Ace

ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 19:  Yu Darvish #11 of the Texas Rangers throws against the Seattle Mariners at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on April 19, 2013 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Gabe ZaldivarPop Culture Lead WriterApril 25, 2013

Yu Darvish's excellence is now available in GIF form, and you will be captivated by the results.

Yahoo! Sports spotted what has to be the most striking display of pitching prowess ever encapsulated in the restrictive number of frames per second a GIF allows.

The image comes from Reddit user DShep, and we guarantee you will end up watching it far longer than you might expect.

The point is to extol the Japanese phenom turned MLB strikeout machine. 

In just his first season with the Rangers, Darvish was No. 7 in the majors in strikeouts (221) and was second in strikeouts per nine innings (10.40).

He does it with an amazing array of out pitches that makes it nearly impossible for a batter to get a perfect scouting report on the ace.

As Yahoo! Sports' Jeff Passan exclaims, the GIF is even missing some pitches.

This season, Darvish has been far better than he was in 2012. He commands his pitches with efficiency and has amazing bite to his eclectic arsenal.

He strikes out over 13 batters per nine innings and has a minuscule 0.80 WHIP through five games. Then again, sometimes we let numbers get in the way of true beauty.

Yahoo! Sports' Tim Brown reported on the vast array of pitches that not only dominates but beguiles those who have been around this game for years:

Several hours earlier, a more veteran scout (by perhaps 20 years) listened attentively to the clumsily phrased question: "How many pitchers have you seen with both the quantity of pitches and the quality of pitches possessed by Darvish?"

He got the gist, formed an O with his thumb and forefingers, and grinned.

"Zero," he said.

In the fourth inning at Angel Stadium, Darvish's former teammate, Josh Hamilton, came to the plate with two outs. The first pitch was a 60-mph curveball. Hamilton swung over it. Darvish got the ball back and stared in.

Darvish's catcher then went to the mound.

"I put down all 10 signs and he didn't want any of them," A.J. Pierzynski later explained.

Darvish would go on to pitch six innings Wednesday, recording 11 strikeouts and the win against the Angels.

We could continue raving about the 26-year-old pitcher and the amazing stats that prove he is among the league's best.

But if a single image is worth a thousand words, a GIF speaks volumes more.

 

Hit me up on Twitter for more MLB madness.

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