Big league pitchers have actually heard the expression “Throw that the heat!” perhaps an ext than any other phrase. Baseball fans have actually long had actually an infatuation through the game’s signature pitch, the fastball. There’s no doubt the for countless who’ve play baseball, the pitchers the stand out the many are the ones who threw the hardest.

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One of the burning concerns at any kind of one photo in baseball background is the concern of who throws the hardest. At this photo in time, Aroldis Chapman is the game’s preeminent fireballer. Once Chapman blistered the radar gun at 105 mph a couple of years back, numerous were calling the the more quickly thrower of every time.

But this isn’t correct. Many thanks to the scientific and also mathematical analysis done in the documentary Fastball, we recognize it’s not correct. The difference of more quickly fastball belongs to Nolan Ryan‘s record 108 mph fastball.

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Why we love the fastball

Nolan Ryan’s saturday no-hitter. (Photo from year 1974 to be a watershed year of sorts for just how we have concerned measure the speed of a pitch. This was the year the the concept of the radar gun to be established. A bunch the smart civilization decided the if you usage an infrared beam, girlfriend can conveniently get an exact reading of how fast a key is moving. It can likewise be set to check out the same point of measure repeatedly, offering a fair evaluate of the speed. Nolan Ryan ended up being baseball’s first pitcher to ‘light up” the radar in ~ a major league park.

On Aug. 20, 1974, in a game versus the Detroit Tigers, climate Angels pitcher Nolan Ryan pitched one 11-inning finish game 1-0 loss. Together a fast note, Nolan Ryan’s job is significant by play on groups that weren’t every that an excellent offensively. He truly is a instance study in why wins aren’t the best judge the a pitcher’s worth in every instance. Not wanting come stray to far off subject though, in the game against Detroit, Ryan to be clocked in ~ 100.9 mph, in the ninth inning. That means that that was gaining stronger as the game wore on!

But favor Feller and also Johnson before him, Ryan’s measurement needs to be adjusted too. Ryan’s pitch was measured in ~ 10 feet in former of home plate. When the ideal adjustments are made, his 100.9 mph fastball becomes closer to 108.5 mph. If friend are keeping score, the is about 3.5 mph quicker than Chapman’s fastest key on record. Every hail the Ryan Express!

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