Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
THE MOUND — I love baseball. I love playing it and I love watching it.
I'll be the first one to admit that I know why some people hate watching baseball. It can be boring and dull with little action, but there is something I love about the game I can't deny. Maybe it's the fact that there's one person on offense trying to battle nine others all at once; or how you have all these other people on the field, but it all comes down to the pitcher and the batter determining what will happen next.
I would say pitcher is one of the most stressful jobs in all of sports. It's all on your shoulders. Can you pitch strikes? Can you make sure batter puts it in play, but to a place where your fielders have a chance to make a play? Can you throw it in the right spot to not give up a home run? You're pulled in with no outs and bases loaded and it's up to you to not give up any runs.
It's a stressful job. I was a pitcher growing up. Sometimes the stress got to me. I had a handful of pitches I'd throw: a four-seam fastball, a curveball, a split-finger, a slider and a wild pitch. I'd say the fastball and the wild pitch were my go-to's, especially when that stress kicked in.
I'm not saying Royals pitcher Jake Brentz was stressed out when he threw this pitch, but who knows?
Brentz was on the mound against the Oakland A's when he threw what could be the worst pitch in MLB history. It doesn't fly over the head of the catcher and crash into the backstop. It also doesn't hit the dirt right in front of the plate. It takes an immediate nosedive and almost hits him in his own foot.
Maybe it was stress, maybe his hands were sweaty, or maybe — just maybe — it was a fluke accident.
Whatever it was, I'm going to cut Brentz some slack because while none of my wild pitches nearly bruised my own body, I also never made it past high school. This guy is throwing in the big leagues. I think we can let this one slide.