Splitter (FS)


Splitters are often referred to as "split-finger fastballs," but because of their break and lower velocity, they don't hold much in common with a typical fastball. As such, Statcast classifies splitters as an offspeed pitch.

A splitter is thrown with the effort of a fastball, but it will drop sharply as it nears home plate. Splitters are generally thrown in the same situations that would see a pitcher throw his breaking and off-speed pitches. They're generally only slightly faster than a changeup, and sometimes a pitcher's offspeed pitch will be a combination between the two, called a "split-change."

Splitters are a relatively uncommon offspeed pitch, but they are still used with some prevalence. The splitter is a much more common pitch in Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball, and Japanese pitchers who come to the Major Leagues often bring a splitter with them.


A pitcher throws a splitter by gripping the ball with his two fingers split in a "V" shape on opposite sides of the ball -- often even on the outside of the seams. With its deceptively slower velocity and sharp drop, a splitter is designed to get the hitter's bat ahead of the pitch and induce weak contact.

Because of the way the splitter is gripped, it will "tumble" out of the pitcher's hand with low spin.


The splitter evolved from the forkball. The two pitches are gripped in almost the same way, except a splitter is generally held with more ease and placed toward the top of the fingers. Splitters are also thrown with the same minimal wrist action as a fastball, unlike the wrist-snap used for a forkball. The splitter received a great deal of recognition thanks to Hall of Fame reliever Bruce Sutter, who threw the pitch with regularity, and the pitch is now popular thanks to stars like Shohei Ohtani.

In A Call

"split," "split-finger fastball," "split-finger"