Who's got the best fastball in the National League for 2010 so far in this short season? Some of these names may will really surprise you! These are based on pure speed, and their stats can be found at www.fangraghs.com and are for all National League pitchers, both starters and relievers. Numbers are through Friday May 8th
Charlie Morton starts our list at #10. He also supports one of the highest ERA's among all starters, and just lowered it to 10.30 after finally having a good outing. Mr. Morton comes in at 93.3 MPH fastball
Esmil Rogers is one of the Rockies top prospects. He began the year as the long man in the 'pen, but after injuries to the Rockies starting rotation, he's had 2 starts. His 2ndary pitches aren't there yet, and he will most likely be sent back to AAA but there is nothing wrong with his heater, that comes in at 93.4 MPH
Edwin Jackson comes to the Diamondbacks from the AL, and he's struggled so far in 2010. He's 1-4 and has a 7.32 ERA. But he's had 24 K's in 39.1 Innings pitched so far in 2010, mostly due to his 93.6 MPH heater.
Tommy Hanson was a number one prospect for a reason. He's also on of the young guns of baseball. There is nothing funny about 38 K's in 35 innings, unless it's watching batters try to hit his 93.6 MPH fastball.
Mat Latos is one of the reasons the San Diego Padres find themselves near the top in the National League West. Mat has struggled at times with consistency, but one look at him pitching you know he's got a future, most guys that can burn it in at 93.6 do. He'll be scary once he gets his secondary pitches down.
This one is surpising to me. Brad Penny was cast off from the Red Sox last year, and many considered him close to being done due to age, (he's only going to be 32 this month!) and injuries. The Cardinal got a steal. Penny has bounced back well with a 1.99 ERA, with 24 K's with only 8 Walks over 40.2 innings. Batters are only batting 1.29 against Penny, and his 93.9 MPH fastball.
I know there are people out there that really don't know how good Josh Johnson is. 42 K's over only 37 innings is proof he's one of the best. You can also ask the batters that are only hitting .214 off of him so far this season. Josh, uses his 94.1 MPH fastball more than any of the other pitchers in our countdown, using it a full 66.2 % of the time. So if you are a hitter guessing heater, you are right....and you still can't hit it.
Did you see this one coming? George of the Rose, is on the DL and will be for awhile with damage to tendons in his throwing hand. De La Rosa has been a great find for the Rockies, and a key piece if they want to win the NL West this year. He's a potential free agent after this season. Where will 94.2 MPH heater be next year? I'm hoping he stays in Denver.
Yeah, I didn't see this one coming either. Really I hope you didn't have money on this one. Felipe Paulino has struggled in 2010, losing each of his last 4 straight starts (on 5 for the season). His ERA has been up there at 5.53, but he's had 23 k's in 27.2 IP's, but Paulino needs to go further into his starts. His 95.8 MPH fastball is worthy of respect.
Ubaldo Jimenez comes in at #1. His heat is on a level of his own, and he can hit 100 MPH regularly deep into games and his average fastball speed is 96.8 MPH, a full MPH over Paulino. Jimenez makes 'em look silly. Just ask the Atlanta Braves who he no hit last month. Ubaldo has 44 K's in 41.1 innings, and he's 6-0 with an ERA of only 0.87 and he's held batters to paltry .182 BAA! Ubaldo Jimenez is one of the best pitchers and at 26 years old, he should be for years to come! Rockies fans all along the front range, wonder if it's possible for one of their own to win the franchise's first ever Cy Young Award.