15-Year MLB Veteran Craig Kimbrel Leaves Hitter Dumbfounded By Throwing New Pitch For First Time Ever

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Craig Kimbrel Changeup

Craig Kimbrel has pitched in the MLB for 15 years. He had never thrown a single changeup prior to Wednesday.

It left the hitter completely dumbfounded.

The nine-time All-Star led the National League in saves from 2011-2014 and was named Major League Baseball’s Reliever of the Year in 2014 and 2017. His dominance cannot be understated.

However, Kimbrel saw a pretty significant dip in production over the last few years. He was inconsistent and often inaccurate. The Phillies lost Games 3 and 4 of the 2023 NLCS because of the struggles.

Baltimore chose to sign Kimbrel despite the command issues and locked him down on a one-year, $13 million deal during the offseason. His role as the closer is his to lose.

In an effort to help hitters guessing, Kimbrel apparently added a new pitch to his repertoire.

The 35-year-old righty threw a changeup for the first time in his career at Spring Training against Philadelphia. And it was filthy!

Phillies infielder Bryson Stott, his former teammate, was absolutely baffled.

Never did he expect a changeup, because history would show that it was never going to come his way. Literally. There was no prior indication that Kimbrel would even try to throw a changeup!

The old adage of “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” clearly does not apply to Kimbrel. It will be interesting to see how often he goes to his new pitch as the MLB season continues.

Considering how bad things have gone at times over the past few years, adding a changeup to his arsenal might be what he needs to get back to missing bats. Kimbrel is putting in the work to return to a level of dominance that is expected from him. Will it pay off? The jury is still out, but Stott never saw it coming and went down swinging!