Monday, March 30, 2015

Bert Campaneris played every position in one game including pitcher

Bert Campaneris 
nicknamed "Campy"

Dagoberto (Bert) Campaneris Blanco
Born: March 9, 1942, in Pueblo Nuevo, Cuba.


Position: SS, Utility
   (played all positions in a single game)

Height/Weight: 5'10"  160 lbs

Batted: Right
Threw: Right
Batting Average: .259


#FerrellTakesTheField

In March 2015, actor Will Ferrell played 10 positions while playing for 10 teams in one day during MLB spring training. The goal was to match the amazing feat of Bert Campaneris, while raising money to support Cancer for College. Campy played all nine positions during a single game, including switch pitcher ... 50 years ago. 


Campy played all nine positions in one game and 
was a switch pitcher on the mound

On September 8, 1965, as part of a special promotion featuring the popular young player, Campaneris became the first player to play every position in a major league game. On the mound, he pitched ambidextrously, throwing lefty to left-handers, and switched against right-handers. (source: Wikipedia)

Game summary

Kansas City Athletics vs Angels
September 8, 1965

Bert Campaneris plays all 9 positions against the Angels in a promotion to hype poor attendance at Kansas City. When Campy takes the mound in the 8th inning‚ the first batter he faces is his cousin Jose Cardenal‚ who pops out. Campy allows one run‚ and leaves the game in the 9th after a collision with Angels C Ed Kirkpatrick at home plate when Campy is catching. Rene Lachemann replaces Campy as catcher. The Angels win it in the 13th inning 5-3‚ with the win going to Campy's batterymate Aurelio Monteagudo. (BaseballLibrary.com)




Man of Position

Campy Campaneris, Kansas City shortstop, normally uses only one glove in a game but Wednesday night he was supposed to use nine. He was scheduled to play every position including pitcher against the Los Angeles Angels in a game in which he was insured for a million dollars by Athletics owner Charles Finley. (AP photo caption)

Campy posted a 9.00 ERA

In one inning of work, the ambidextrous pitcher allowed one hit, one run, walked two, and struck out one. 

Campy pitched with both hands in the minors

In a minor-league game while playing for Daytona, Campaneris pitched both left-handed and right-handed.

“I played all nine positions in (that) game and they wanted me to pitch with both hands, so I pitched with both hands,” Campaneris says matter of factly. 

(kcmetrosports.com)



Stealing Bases

Nicknamed "Road Runner", speedy shortstop Bert Campaneris led the American League in stolen bases in six seasons. Campy had 649 stolen bases over his 19 year baseball career. 


A utility player for the Yankees at 41

In 1983, at the age of 41, Campaneris returned to the big leagues as a utility infielder with the Yankees, playing for Billy Martin. He responded with a career-high .322 batting average in 60 games and solid defense at second and third base. (BaseballLibrary.com)

Coaching Baseball in Japan


"I wanted to play, but nobody picked me up, so I had to retire," he said. "I hit .322 (46-for-143) with the Yankees. I wanted to keep playing."
Finally convinced he was through as a player, Campaneris fruitlessly explored other avenues in an attempt to stay in the game.
"I also wanted to coach in the major leagues, but nobody gave me a chance," said Campaneris, who did get some jobs working with minor leaguers. "I coached two years in Japan, and we won the whole thing when I coached over there for the Seibu Lions." (SFGate)


Bert Campaneris Plays All Nine Positions In Game (Sept. 8, 1965)



Bert Campaneris Stats by Baseball Almanac

Bert Campaneris | BaseballLibrary.com



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Sunday, March 29, 2015

Cardinals pitcher Lance Lynn uses effective velocity



4/9/13: Cardinals starter Lance Lynn goes six innings, striking out 10 while allowing just one run on four hits against the Reds


Effective Velocity


Lance Lynn Effective Velocity Breakdown



Lance Lynn Fastball Usage EV View
Uses the fastball 80% of the time. Learn how he locates the 2-seam and 4-seam fastballs




Lance Lynn EV Usage EV Report
Fastball, 2 seamer, curveball, change, cutter/slide

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Monday, March 23, 2015

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Aubrey McCarty makes debut for Vandy in 2015

Switch Pitcher McCarty throws in first college game

Aubrey McCarty
photo: Vandy Baseball
Vandy's Carson Fulmer strikes out 11 in 16-1 win

By Adam Sparks, asparks@tennessean.com
The Tennessean
Friday, 27 Feb 2015

Joey Abraham and Collin Snider pitched hitless seventh and eighth innings, respectively, and "switch pitcher" Aubrey McCarty, a freshman, made his debut.
McCarty throws right-handed to right-handed batters and lefty to left-handed hitters, a skill he picked up at 11 years old when he injured his right arm and tried throwing from the opposite side.
"It plays a mind game, especially if the other team doesn't know I can do it," McCarty said.
McCarty struck out two right-handed, walked a batter lefty and allowed an RBI triple righty before finishing off the last out.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Are all switch hitters naturally right-handed?


No, but the majority of switch hitters are naturally right-handed.

In the human population, about 10% of people are left-handed and 90% are right-handed.

Only 1% of people are ambidextrous – both right- and left-handed.

Henry Knight switch hitting in the Mickey Mantle state tournament.
(composite photo by Tim Knight)
It is rare for a natural lefty to bat right-handed, but I have coached a few lefties who throw and hit right-handed.

It is not unusual for a natural righty to bat left-handed. Coaches prefer to have a few left-handed hitters in the lineup.


In a PAC-12 game, six-of-nine batters for UCLA were left-handed.



Hitting a baseball is hard to do. Learning to switch hit takes a lot of extra work, so you don't see many switch hitters.

Switch hitters are very rare in high school. Only 1-2% of high school players are switch hitters.
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Note: The original question about switch hitters was from a keyword search.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Slurge pitch by Will Ferrell

Video: Ferrell pitches for the Dodgers - MLB.com

Spring training - 12 March 2015


3/12/15: Will Ferrell warms up on the mound for the Dodgers and records the out on a bunt before getting pulled by manager Don Mattingly. 0.00 ERA in 0.1 IP




Will "Jabroni" Ferrell tells the catcher to give him the double-five signal for the "slurge" pitch that he learned in France. Notice how the catcher makes a leaping catch of the ball. Wow - that pitch had movement - it's unhittable.


Watch Will Ferrell warmup for the Dodgers >>





I throw a lot of ground balls. I'm a ground ball pitcher - pretty much.  - #19 Will Ferrell.

source: mlb.com

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Left Handed Katcher, Became a Switch PItcher



Left Handed Katcher

The Ogden Standard-Examiner (Ogden, Utah) 8 Jul 1948

Have you ever heard of a Katcher who also was a pitcher who did his hurling with either his left or his right arm - depending upon the circumstances? Well there is such a gent and he doesn't strangely enough, play for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

His name is Ralph Katcher and he is a pitcher for the Lubbock Texas club of the class C West Texas-New Mexico league. It seems that Katcher was a fine southpaw pitcher in his high school days back in Stillwell, Oklahoma. Shortly after graduating from high school in 1942, Katcher entered the service. During the war he injured his left shoulder in a wrestling match in France and when he got back to the states he found he could no longer throw left handed.

So the pitching Katcher decided to try pitching with his right arm and he did so well in amateur games around Stillwell, OK that he was signed by Texarkansas, Texas of the Class B Big State league. Texarkana, probably from utter confusion more than anything else, decided to assign Katcher to Lubbock.

Katcher, a chunky 25-year-old Indian, began experimenting with his sore left flipper and soon discovered that he had all the stuff he formerly had as a southpaw. Consequently, Katcher now takes the mound armed with two gloves for he has become a "switch-pitcher."

What might happen if Katcher, the "switch-pitcher" had to pitch to a switch-hitter is something to have nightmares about.

Read More

Found on Newspapers.com .

Friday, March 13, 2015

Pat Venditte switch pitches in spring game

Oakland A's Ambidextrous pitcher Pat Venditte threw with both arms in a Cactus League opener against the SF Giants on March 3, 2015.


Venditte begins spring by recording an out with each arm

A's hurler shows off switch-pitching skills in Cactus opener

by Jane Lee / MLB.com


MESA AZ -- What has become a routine act for Pat Venditte is an astonishing sight for those watching him.


The A's switch-pitcher introduced himself to Cactus League on Tuesday, recording two outs against the Giants -- one with each arm -- as fans, and even teammates, ooed and aahed.


Read more and watch the video



A's switch pitcher Pat Venditte impresses again

By Susan Slusser, SF Gate, Thursday, March 5, 2015

Mesa, Ariz. - Along with starter Barry Zito, the A’s had their other unusual non-roster pitcher in action on Thursday.

Ambidextrous reliever Pat Venditte followed Zito, working the third inning, and he retired the top three men in the Cubs order, Dexter Fowler, Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro. ...

“He gets it done,” Carlin said. “He hits his spots. The slider is a good slider. (Switch pitching) is an interesting weapon. … It definitely has its advantages, I feel like more so than a switch hitter.”

Read more




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Switch Hitter vs Switch Pitcher Paul Richards in 1928

Ambidextrous Paul
by Eddie Evin, Jr.
The Index-Journal (Greenwood, South Carolina), 15 Jun 1954

Paul Richards, manager of the Chicago White Sox of the American League, is definitely after the world's championship this year and will say so at the slightest mention of a flag. ...

All his pitchers are identified on the roster as either right-handers or left-handers. None, it is safe to assume is ambidextrous the way a certain Paul Rapier Richards had bee in his youth.

"Oh, that," he says with a chuckle. This seemed as good a spot as any to pin down that monstrous fable Legend had it that Richards, a switch pitcher, had matched wits with a switch hitter. So tenuous was this tale that one version gave the locale as Waxahatchie High in a Texas schoolboy game and the other as with Muskogee in the old Western Association.

"Both versions are correct." drawled Paul, his brown eyes twinkling. "It happened first at Waxahatchie but no one ever heard of it until after I'd done the same thing at Muskogee in 1928. We were playing Topeka that day and I pitched right-handed to the rightie hitters and left-handed to the lefties. Then Eddie Dyer, the Topeka manager, sent up Charlie Wilson, a switch hitter."

Read More

Found on Newspapers.com

Paul Richards - Ambidextrous Pitcher (Altoona Tribune, 26 July 1928)


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Sunday, March 8, 2015

Switch Pitcher Roy Gibbens - Texas A&M


Goal Lines by Mit Maloney
The Bryan (Texas) Daily Eagle, 25 Mar 1947

Switch Pitcher Roy Gibbens - ace of the Texas Aggie pitching staff 

Switch Pitcher as well as switch batter is Roy Gibbens, ace of the Aggie pitching staff this spring.
His left handed hurling developed when in grade school at LaPryor he hurt his right arm elbow and doctors told him he was through. So he took to throwing with his left.

But he kept working with his right arm and eventually the old snap came back and he starred in high school baseball to such a degree that baseball scouts signed him for professional ball at the tender age of 16.

His professional career was brief, however, and after a few appearances in the Arizona-Texas league he was given his unconditional release

He returned to high school, but was ineligible for sports, so kept in trim with sandlot ball, still throwing with both arms.

Was came and he enlisted in the marines, where he served with distinction, and rose to the rank of staff sergeant,. While in the service he played some baseball with the chicago navy pier and Miramar, Cal., marine teams.

As an ex-G. I., he chose to become a veterinarian and enrolled at A & M.

Last year he worked out with the Aggies, but still was ineligible.

Last May, he petitioned the conference for reinstatement as an amateur. After considering his age when he had signed a pro contract, his war record and record since he was release, the conference fathers gave him a clean bill of health and reinstated him.

Gibbens pitched to two Brooke Medical Center batsmen in the first inning of last Thursday's game. I get there the latter part of that inning, to late to see his southpaw work but I understand that he was awkward as a lefty, and will do most of his pitching with his right hand.

Dave Ferriss of the Boston Red Sox is another ambidextrous hurler. In college, he pitched right handed and played outfield left handed.

Read more

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Saturday, March 7, 2015

Oren Edgar Summers - Kickapoo Ed

Nicknames: Eddie, Ed, Kickapoo Ed, Chief
Ed Summers pitched for the Tigers


Born: 5 Dec 1884 in Ladoga, Indiana
Died: 12 May 1953 in Indianapolis, Indiana

College: Wabash College, Crawfordsville, IN

Team: Detroit Tigers 1908-1912

Batted: Both
Threw: Both (primarily pitched Right-handed)
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 180 lbs

Win-loss Record: 68-45 (.602)
ERA: 2.42
Strikeouts: 362


Ed Summers, was one of baseball’s first knuckleballers. The ambidextrous Summers is recognized in one article as the "Father of the Finger-tip Knuckleball".

During his baseball career, Summers was commonly nicknamed Kickapoo Ed (after the Kickapoo tribe in Indiana). 

In his 1908 rookie season, Ed Summers emerged as the Tigers' best pitcher, finishing with a 1.64 ERA in 301 innings pitched and a 24–12 win-loss record. The following year, Summers threw 282 innings – finishing with a solid 19-9 record and 2.24 ERA. 

He tallied 999 innings pitched during 5 seasons with the Tigers.


Eddie Summers - Pitcher

Switch Pitcher Eddie

Early in his career he was “as talkative as the Sphinx.” He was a non-drinker, and a family man, having married his Ladoga sweetheart Nellie Williams in 1904. Yet Summers could also be “an eccentric character.” He had a “trick” left arm, and apparently pitched ambidextrously in moments of his semipro and/or minor league days. (source: Bio by Phil Williams, SABR.org)


Oren Edgar Summers - The Kickapoo Chief

Eddie still holds the American League record for the longest scoreless game ever pitched by a single pitcher-18 innings in a 0-0 tie with the Washington Senators in 1909.  This record was mentioned in the July 16, 1997 edition of USA Today. (http://cannerhilites.blogspot.com/)

Major League Baseball Player. Born Oron Edgar Summers, he spent five years in the Major Leagues as a pitcher with the Detroit Tigers. He appeared in the 1908 and 1909 World Series, losing two games in each of the two series. He made his major league debut in 1908 at the age of 23. He appeared in 138 games between 1908 and 1912 winning 68 games and losing 45. He ended his playing career throwing 79 complete games, nine shutouts with a 2.42 earned run average. (bio by: Nils M. Solsvik Jr.)

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Famous Pitcher Dies; Still Holds Records in 1953

The Bedford Gazette (Bedford, Pennsylvania)
Wednesday, May 13, 1953

Indianapolis, May 12 (AP) - Oren Edgar Summers, who had a notable career as a major league baseball pitcher more than two score years ago, died today at the age of 68.

The 18 innings he pitched for the Detroit Tigers in their 0-0 game with Washington July 16, 1909, still stands as a record.

Summers also hold the American League record for the most victories by a freshman pitcher. He won 24 while losing 12 on the Tigers in 1908.

Summers pitched for the Tigers in two World Series, in 1908 against Chicago and 1909 against Pittsburgh.

Read Article

...

Ed Summers Statistics and History | Baseball-Reference.com

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Jimmy Wadlow, Switch Pitcher 1944


York Castoff Is Switch Pitcher

Harrisburg Telegraph (Harrisburg, PA) 8 Jun 1944

Jimmy Wadlow, 22-year-old pitcher who can throw from either port or starboard, is trying to make up
his mind whether to be right or lefthanded when he tries out with Sacramento of the Pacific Coast League.

Wadlow is registered as a righthander but he always has carried a pretty fair spare tire in his southpaw, even before he broke his right arm serving up a fast pitch in 1941.


"I've got a lot more speed and a better curve when I'm a southpaw," said Jimmy while visiting his parents here. "But my control is bad from the port side."


Read more

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Bear Nine Has Two-handed Pitcher 1927


Earl Jacobson - University of California

Bear Nine Has Two-handed Pitcher

Oakland Tribune,  6 feb 1927

An Ambidextrous pitcher of high calibre is one of the leading candidates for a hurlers' job on the University of California, according to Coach Carl Zamloch.

Earl Jacobson, from last year's freshman diamond nine, is a right-handed hurler who can put a glove on his other hand and throw them almost as well.

Zamlock declares that he will attempt to develop Jacobson's talens along this line, pointing out the deceptive value against a left-handed batter.

Read more

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Will Lewis - Ambidextrous HS pitcher 1915


Ambidextrous Youth from Kinston Gave Griffith a Surprise

The High Point Enterprise (NC) 12 Aug 1915

According to a story in the Washington POst of yesterday morning, a young North Carolinian has exhibited something to Clark Griffith, manager of the Washington team, that the astute leader, dubbed the "Fox," admits he never witnessed before. The youngster who opened Griffith's eyes is Will Lewis, and his home is at Kinston. The story of young Lewis, an  ambidextrous thrower, as it appeared in the Post, is as follows:

"Two young pitchers worked for the Nationals in batting practice yesterday: Brazil, from New Jersey came here upon recommendation from one of Griffith's friends. He is a left-hander and did not make a very favorable impression. He is tho return home today. The other youngster was Will Lewis, from Kinston, N.C. He is here on a vacation with his brother and is one of the freaks of baseball. Lewis went to the ball yard early and asked Manager Griffith permission to pitch to the batters.

Griffith was only too glad to grant his request. The players had all taken their turns with the exception of Altrock. Lewis had been pitching right-handed. When Nich came to t he bat he changed and shot a fast one over with his left hand. It immediately developed that Lewis was ambidextrous and before the game was called the players had a lot of fun with him. Lewis is said to possess quite a little stuff and is equally effective with either hand.

At the present time, he is a student at the Kinston high school and is to enter the University of North Carolina. His is 17 years old, weighs 155 pound and stands 5 feet 10 inches. He will pitch against the National in batting practice today and tomorrow. Griffith said last night that during his entire career he is the first pitcher he ever saw who could curve a ball with either hand."

Will Lewis is a son of E. B. Lewis, of Kinston, private secretary to Congressman Claude Kitchin and a brother to McDaniel Lewis, third baseman on the University of North Carolina baseball team this year.

Read More

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Do colleges look for switch hitters?

Maybe.

Being a switch will make coaches take notice, especially if you can consistently hit the ball hard from both sides.

Switch hitters are rare in high school - maybe 1 to 2% can switch hit. A good HS switch hitter is very rare since most guys don't get enough reps from both sides of the plate - during games.


Looking at the college rosters there is an average of one switch hitter per team (out of 35 players) in Division 1.

Vanderbilt has 4 switch hitters and they won the College World Series in 2014.


Why are switch hitters rare?
Learn about switch hitters at all levels.


On the decline of switch hitters in the MLB ...

"The real decline that seemingly has led to an increase in reliance on left-handed hitting is the decline in switch-hitting. Back in 1994, 20% of all plate appearances went to switch-hitters, but that total was just 14% last year, continuing a long-term trend away from allocating at-bats to guys who hit from both sides of the plate."  
(source: Dave Cameron, FOX Sports)

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Note: I found this question in a keyword search.

Boston's Harris wants to be switch-pitcher 1987


By Rob Gloster, AP Sports Writer, Indiana Gazette, 15 May 1987

Greg Harris has spent parts of 13 major league seasons as a right-handed pitcher. He appeared in a team-record 80 games for the Red Sox last season, all as a righty.

But he longs to also pitch as a lefty in the majors, and says he is confident his switch-pitching ability could be effective. He would switch to his left hand to face a left-handed batter.

"The point is it's for one batter," he said. "I haven't done this to make a joke out of the game. I'm serious about it."

Read more

Found on Newspapers.com .