Breaking down the splitter, the least-popular pitch in baseball

Thursday May 8th, 2014
Hiroki Kuroda, who has a 4.43 ERA this year, throws more splitters than any other pitcher in baseball.
John Cordes/Icon SMI

This all speaks to the versatility of the splitter. It's a more challenging pitch to master than a changeup, and has the same downside; if a pitcher leaves his splitter up, it's probably going to travel a long way. It has a bit more pace than a changeup and, importantly, as the same rotation as a four-seam fastball. And, as Tanaka, Samardzija and Hudson prove, so long as a pitcher commands the pitch and gets a wide enough margin between his heater and his splitter, it can be a filthy out pitch.

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