R.A. Dickey…is sexy

The Year of the Pitcher Part II continues as Matt Cain’s perfecto last week was the fifth no-hitter of the year, and Week 10 was littered with dominant pitching performances. While Cain’s game was described by many as one of the greatest games ever pitched (since he tied for the most strikeouts ever in a perfect game), it honestly may not even have been the best pitching performance of the day. I watched much of the Cain game and I watched R.A. Dickey’s one-hitter against TB earlier in the day, and I’d have to say that Dickey was even more dominant than Cain. Dickey faced a better lineup (including the DH) and induced consistently weaker contact. While Cain gave up a couple of warning-track bombs that probably could have gone out in other ballparks, not a single Tampa batter hit a ball squarely in play until Will Rhymes lined out to right in the 9th. Also, Cain received the benefit of some borderline strike calls from a pitcher-friendly umpire (Ted Barrett, who became the only umpire in history to be behind the plate for two perfect games), while Dickey had more swings and misses (23 to 14), had more first-pitch strikes, threw less pitches despite facing two more batters and had to deal with an umpire with a smaller strike zone. The only two baserunners that Dickey allowed were on a clear error on a routine groundball by David Wright in the 9th and another misplay by Wright in the 1st on a weak bad-hop chopper that was scored a hit. Q.E.D., you need a lot of luck to have a perfect game, and R.A. Dickey is the greatest pitcher who ever lived. And yes, this space will continue to function essentially as the unofficial R.A. Dickey fan club for the foreseeable future.