Off Speed by Terry McDermott

This book is really three books in one. Book one is a very quick overview of several pitches: fastball, curveball, spitball, sinker, knuckleball, slider, split, cutter, and change. The second book is a brief summary of Felix Hernandez’s perfect game in August 2012. The last book is about the author growing up in the Midwest surrounded by amateur adult ballplayers including his father.

So I think the title and cover of this book are deceptive. I expected the first book. I wanted to learn more about the history, anatomy, and highlights of different off speed pitches throughout history. The second book is a perfect example of off speed in action; Hernandez threw a perfect game with an impeccable mix of fantastic off speed pitches. The third book – a history of amateur ball in Iowa – could be interesting but I just was not interested. These stories didn’t flow into the rest of the narrative.

This isn’t a bad book, it’s just forgettable.

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