The cutter. A game saver, reviver, the magical pitch which can change a pitcher's career. The pitch where home runs become strikeouts.
Mariano Rivera isn't the only one. How about 2010 Cy Young Roy Halladay? Or Josh Beckett's recent dominance after suffering an injury-riddled 2010.
John Danks, who had started the season with zero wins, has found his pitch. The pitch he introduced in 2008 and stopped since then. Now he started using it again, and since then, he is more dominant than he ever was.
The future Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera created the cut fastball and revolutionized baseball. Since the late 90's, a myriad of hitters have approached the Yankees closer with looks of despair.
When hitters stepped up to the plate and laid their eyes on the sandman standing on the mound, they thought to themselves, "oh no, not this guy again." However, nowadays, the reality is, every time hitters step up to the plate they are faced with that mentality. Mike Adams, James Shields and Dan Haren are among the myriad of new "sandmans" ready to "cut" at bats, hits, homers and the hitter's advantage.
Even pitchers such as Ryan Vosgelsong and Kyle Lohse have re-emerged out of the depths of doom, and returned to the ageless world of dominance. After all, It's not age, speed, athleticism or even skill: It's the pitch.
It's time for the game changing cutter to evolve. For it to change history. For it to make the Most Valuable Player award into the new Cy Young award and vice versa.
The cut fastball is a new way to extend careers. It stymies hitters, and shifts the edge from hitters to pitchers.
When the cutter comes near you, you're thinking fastball. The ball breaks and just like that leaves the hitter baffled with shame, as the umpire jerks his arms and declares a strike. Home runs become strikeouts, H becomes K, stats change and nothing stays the same.