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James Paxton threw a curveball so filthy, it didn't even need to reach the plate to get a swing

Successful pitching performances come in many forms. Some pitchers do well when they're inducing a lot of weak contact. Others do well when they're throwing absolute filth that makes opposing hitters look foolish.

Mariners starter James Paxton falls firmly in the latter category and, during his team's 5-0 win over the Rockies Wednesday night, he certainly had his stuff working. In 5 1/3 innings of work, he struck out six Rockies hitters while surrendering only three hits.

None of his strikeouts was more impressive than his sixth, when he unleashed a knuckle-curve that was so nasty, Rockies designated hitter Pat Valaika swung at it even though it bounced in front of home plate.


Earlier this week, Corey Dickerson proved that such a pitch isn't technically unhittable. However, as Paxton showed, a bouncing ball is still a long way from being considered an optimal pitch to try to hit.