Screwball

A screwball is a baseball and fastpitch softball pitch that is thrown so as to break in the opposite direction of a slider or curveball. Depending on the pitcher's arm angle, the ball may also have a sinking action.

Carl Hubbell was one of the most renowned screwball pitchers in the history of Major League Baseball.[1] Hubbell was known as the "scroogie king" for his mastery of the pitch and the frequency with which he threw it. Other famous screwball artists include Tug McGraw and Cy Young Award winners Mike Cuellar, Fernando Valenzuela, Mike Marshall, and Willie Hernández.

Grip and Action

The baseball is held with the open end of the horseshoe shape (where the seams are closest together) facing upward. The thumb is placed just beneath the bottom of the horseshoe, the index finger is curled against the top of the thumb, forming a tight circle to the side of the ball. The middle finger is then placed on the top of the ball and grips against the top seam, (the seam closest to the index finger). The ring finger is placed outside the other top seam loosely and the pinky is held on the side opposite the thumb; all fingers are spread apart. The grip is similar to the Circle changeup [2], but with different placement in regards to the seams.

Also, unlike the Circle change, when throwing the screwball the middle finger applies the most pressure to the baseball, while the ring and pinky exert no pressure at all. For left-handed pitchers, as the middle finger presses hard down on the ball, their hand pronates (turns) inwardly in a clockwise manner near the end of the pitching motion, until much of the hand is beneath the ball. Conversely, right-handed pitchers turn their hand counter-clockwise. [3]

Effects

When thrown by a right-handed pitcher, a screwball breaks from left to right from the point of view of the pitcher; the pitch therefore moves down and in on a right-handed batter and down and away from a left-handed batter. When thrown by a left-handed pitcher, a screwball breaks from right to left, moving down and in on a left-handed batter and down and away from a right-handed batter. Due to this left-to-right movement of the ball (when thrown by a right-handed pitcher), right-handed pitchers use a screwball against left-handed batters in the same way that they use a slider against right-handed batters. If thrown correctly, the screwball breaks in the opposite direction of a curveball.

Pitchers

One of the first great screwball pitchers was Christy Mathewson, who pitched for the New York Giants 1900–1916, whose pitch was then labeled as the "fadeaway"; although historians have been unable to prove it, baseball legend holds that Giants manager John McGraw arranged for Black pitcher Rube Foster to teach Mathewson the screwball, as McGraw was forbidden from hiring Foster directly.[4] Major league pitchers who have thrown the screwball during their careers include:

Contrary to popular belief, the screwball is not particularly stressful on a pitcher's arm.[14] The pronation of the forearm allows for the protection of the ulnar collateral ligament, which is replaced during Tommy John surgery.

References

  1. ^ "Carl Hubbell". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  2. ^ Ellis, Steven. "Pitching Grips". TheCompletePitcher.com.
  3. ^ Schoenfeld, Bruce (July 10, 2014). "The Mystery of the Vanishing Screwball".
  4. ^ In truth, Matthewson learned the pitch from minor leaguer Dave Williams. Burns, Ken (September 19, 1994). "Inning Two: Something Like a War". Baseball. PBS.
  5. ^ "Hubbell Out For Season", New York Times, August 24, 1938, pg. 26.
  6. ^ "Blanton, Pirates, Stops Dodgers, 8-2", New York Times, May 19, 1935, pg. S5.
  7. ^ "Arroyo: Artist of Yankee Bullpen", New York Times, August 21, 1960, pg. S2.
  8. ^ "Orioles Get Baldschun of Phillies", New York Times, December 7, 1965, pg. 61.
  9. ^ "Shrine of the Eternals 2006 Induction Day Photos". Baseballreliquary.org. July 23, 2006. Archived from the original on September 29, 2013. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
  10. ^ "Roundup: Cuellar Holds Showing of Old Art Form", New York Times, June 12, 1970, pg. 43.
  11. ^ "Peter Gammons". Espn.go.com. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
  12. ^ "The Herrera Screwball". Fox Sports. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
  13. ^ "Unheralded Braden keeps making us believe this is his defining year". Sports Illustrated. May 10, 2010.
  14. ^ Schoenfeld, Bruce (July 10, 2014). "The Mystery of the Vanishing Screwball". New York Times.
Addams Family Values

Addams Family Values is a 1993 American comedy film, the sequel to The Addams Family (1991). It was written by Paul Rudnick and directed by Barry Sonnenfeld, and features many cast members from the original, including Raul Julia, Anjelica Huston, Christopher Lloyd, Christina Ricci, Carel Struycken, Jimmy Workman and Christopher Hart. Joan Cusack plays a serial killer who marries Uncle Fester (Lloyd) intending to murder him for his inheritance, while teenagers Wednesday (Ricci) and Pugsley (Workman) are sent to summer camp. Included in the soundtrack is "Supernatural Thing", which was a chart success for Ben E. King.

Compared to its predecessor, which retained something of the madcap approach of the 1960s sitcom, Addams Family Values is played more for macabre laughs. The film was well received by critics, receiving significantly better reviews than its predecessor, which had a mixed critical reception. It was also a commercial success, but did not perform as well at the box office as the first film.

Caddyshack

Caddyshack is a 1980 American sports comedy film directed by Harold Ramis, written by Brian Doyle-Murray, Ramis, and Douglas Kenney, and starring Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Ted Knight, Michael O'Keefe and Bill Murray. Doyle-Murray also has a supporting role.

Caddyshack was Ramis' directorial debut and boosted the career of Dangerfield, who was previously known mostly for his stand-up comedy. Grossing nearly $40 million at the domestic box office (the 17th-highest of the year), it was the first of a series of similar comedies. A sequel, Caddyshack II (1988), followed, although only Chase reprised his role and the film was poorly received.

The film has a cult following and was named by ESPN as "the funniest sports movie ever made".

Carl Hubbell

Carl Owen Hubbell (June 22, 1903 – November 21, 1988), nicknamed "The Meal Ticket" and "King Carl", was an American baseball player. He stood 6 feet 0 inches (1.83 m) tall and weighed 170 pounds (77 kg). He was a member of the New York Giants in the National League from 1928 to 1943. He remained on the team's payroll for the rest of his life, long after their move to San Francisco.

Twice voted the National League's Most Valuable Player, Hubbell was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1947. During 1936 and 1937, Hubbell set the major league record for consecutive wins by a pitcher with 24. He is perhaps best remembered for his performance in the 1934 All-Star Game, when he struck out five of the game's great hitters in succession. Hubbell's primary pitch was the screwball.

Carole Lombard

Carole Lombard (born Jane Alice Peters; October 6, 1908 – January 16, 1942) was an American film actress. She was particularly noted for her energetic, often off-beat roles in the screwball comedies of the 1930s. She was the highest-paid star in Hollywood in the late 1930s.

Lombard was born into a wealthy family in Fort Wayne, Indiana, but was raised in Los Angeles by her single mother. At 12, she was recruited by the film director Allan Dwan and made her screen debut in A Perfect Crime (1921). Eager to become an actress, she signed a contract with the Fox Film Corporation at age 16, but mainly played bit parts. She was dropped by Fox after a car accident left a scar on her face. Lombard appeared in 15 short comedies for Mack Sennett between 1927 and 1929, and then began appearing in feature films such as High Voltage and The Racketeer. After a successful appearance in The Arizona Kid (1930), she was signed to a contract with Paramount Pictures.

Paramount quickly began casting Lombard as a leading lady, primarily in drama films. Her profile increased when she married William Powell in 1931, but the couple divorced after two years. A turning point in Lombard's career came when she starred in Howard Hawks' pioneering screwball comedy Twentieth Century (1934). The actress found her niche in this genre, and continued to appear in films such as Hands Across the Table (1935) (forming a popular partnership with Fred MacMurray), My Man Godfrey (1936), for which she was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress, and Nothing Sacred (1937). At this time, Lombard married "the King of Hollywood", Clark Gable, and the supercouple gained much attention from the media. Keen to win an Oscar, Lombard began to move towards more serious roles at the end of the decade. Unsuccessful in this aim, she returned to comedy in Alfred Hitchcock's Mr. & Mrs. Smith (1941) and Ernst Lubitsch's To Be or Not to Be (1942)—her final film role.

Lombard's career was cut short when she died at the age of 33 on board TWA Flight 3 on Mount Potosi, Nevada, while returning from a war bond tour. Today, she is remembered as one of the definitive actresses of the screwball comedy genre and American comedy, and ranks among the American Film Institute's greatest female stars of classic Hollywood cinema.

It's a Wonderful World (1939 film)

It's a Wonderful World (1939) is a romantic screwball comedy-mystery, starring Claudette Colbert and James Stewart and directed by W. S. Van Dyke.

Libeled Lady

Libeled Lady is a 1936 screwball comedy film starring Jean Harlow, William Powell, Myrna Loy, and Spencer Tracy, written by George Oppenheimer, Howard Emmett Rogers, Wallace Sullivan, and Maurine Dallas Watkins, and directed by Jack Conway. This was the fifth of fourteen films in which Powell and Loy were teamed.

Libeled Lady was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture. The film was remade in 1946 as Easy to Wed with Esther Williams, Van Johnson, and Lucille Ball.

Monkey Business (1952 film)

Monkey Business is a 1952 American screwball comedy film directed by Howard Hawks, written by Ben Hecht, and starring Cary Grant, Ginger Rogers, Charles Coburn, and Marilyn Monroe. To avoid confusion with the 1931 Marx Brothers film of the same name, this film is sometimes referred to as Howard Hawks' Monkey Business.

Mr.

Mister, usually written in its abbreviated form Mr. (US) or Mr (UK), is a commonly used English honorific for men under the rank of knighthood. The title 'Mr' derived from earlier forms of master, as the equivalent female titles Mrs, Miss, and Ms all derived from earlier forms of mistress. Master is sometimes still used as an honorific for boys and young men, but its use is increasingly uncommon.

The modern plural form is Misters, although its usual formal abbreviation Messrs(.) derives from use of the French title messieurs in the 18th century. Messieurs is the plural of monsieur (originally mon sieur, "my lord"), formed by declining both of its constituent parts separately.

Screwball (comics)

Screwball is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The world's first "live streaming super-villain", she commits crimes to get more hits on her web page and is an enemy of Spider-Man. Screwball first appears in Amazing Spider-Man #559 and was created by Dan Slott and Marcos Martín.

Screwball comedy film

Screwball comedy is a subgenre of the romantic comedy genre that became popular during the Great Depression, originating in the early 1930s and thriving until the early 1940s. It is widely known for satirizing the traditional love story. Many secondary characteristics of this genre are similar to film noir, but it distinguishes itself for being characterized by a female that dominates the relationship with the male central character, whose masculinity is challenged. The two engage in a humorous battle of the sexes, which was a new theme for Hollywood and audiences at the time. What sets the screwball comedy apart from the generic romantic comedy is that "screwball comedy puts its emphasis on a funny spoofing of love, while the more traditional romantic ultimately accents love." Other elements of the screwball comedy include fast-paced, overlapping repartee, farcical situations, escapist themes, physical battle of the sexes, disguise and masquerade, and plot lines involving courtship and marriage. Screwball comedies often depict social classes in conflict, as in It Happened One Night (1934) and My Man Godfrey (1936). Some comic plays are also described as screwball comedies.

Step Brothers (film)

Step Brothers is a 2008 American comedy film directed by Adam McKay and written by Will Ferrell and McKay from a story by Ferrell, McKay, and John C. Reilly. It follows Brennan (Ferrell) and Dale (Reilly), two grown men who are forced to live together as brothers after their single parents marry each other. Richard Jenkins, Mary Steenburgen, Adam Scott and Kathryn Hahn also star.

The film was released on July 25, 2008, two years after Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby. Both films feature the same main actors, as well as the same producing and writing team.

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