The “Shake” Pitch

Back when Bobby Valentine was managing the Chiba Lotte Marines in the Nippon Professional Baseball League, he asked his ace starting pitcher Satoru Komiyama to “make the ball shake” as an offspeed pitch.

He first tried a knuckleball but couldn’t grip it effectively.  Instead, he uses a forkball grip without the use of his thumb and throws it without any spin.  So in essence, it is a knuckler but thrown in a different manner.  Because of the grip, Komiyama didn’t want to call it a knuckler so he named it a “shake” pitch since he was able to achieve his goal of making the ball shake.  The average velocity of the pitch is 55mph and Komiyama says he can throw a strike with it about 60% of the time.

Here it is:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40t_caBnV3c

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  • matt

    I used to throw this pitch when i was 12 or 13 back in little league. When thrown correctly it really shakes – especially from the pitchers vantage point. For me it worked especially well with a slight breeze at my back.

    No one showed me how to throw it, it was just something I discovered while playing catch with some friends. It moved like a knuckleball, but i found it much easier to grip. My coaches had no idea what it was exactly, and prior to this i had never even heard of someone else throwing it.

    Has anyone heard of anyone else, besides Komiyama, throwing this pitch in the pros?