Gagne giving hitters the finger?

Screen capture of Gagne's curveball gripThere’s a somewhat lively discussion going on over the Internet and the airwaves about whether Eric Gagne is tipping his curveball or not because of his grip, in which he points his index finger, and it is not in contact with the ball. (Photo courtesy of Marbleheader on Sons of Sam Horn)

In the same discussion thread, one user mentions that Josh Beckett does the same thing, and Beckett was judged by Baseball America to have the best curveball in the majors this year. Another user insists that Gagne has continued this practice from his days in Los Angeles, where he won a Cy Young with that same curveball.

My take on this is that if it were really a problem, someone in the organization would have spotted it by now. Jason Varitek is sitting behind the plate, watching that curveball from the hitter’s perspective, and he hasn’t corrected it. And John Farrell and Terry Francona are not dummies, either. This is not the problem, though he may be tipping pitches in some other subtle way.


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