Cut Fastball

The cut fastball, or cutter, moves away from the pitcher's throwing side. A right-handed pitcher's cut fastball moves from right to left with approximately 95 percent of the velocity of the ultimate fastball. In the cut fastball grip, the thumb slides to the outside of the center line of the baseball. With the thumb slid over, the baseball is held slightly off center and therefore does not have a regular top-to-botom fastball rotation. Instead, the ball has slightly more sidespin and runs away from the pitcher's throwing side. It's a very effective pitch, just ask Mariano Rivera! But, it is often a baseball pitching grip that is never tried.

The cut fastball and the slider are similar in that both balls are held off center. The slider, however, is held more off center and therefore breaks down as well as away. The cut fastball is excellent training for the slider.

There's no better way to show this grip than from the person that throws it best, Mariano Rivera:



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