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The five best MLB pitchers of the 21st century
Dec 13, 2021, 3:56:00 AM

The five best MLB pitchers of the 21st century

In baseball, most viewers would gravitate towards batters. Pitchers deserve the spotlight which is why we’re talking about the best of the 21st century so far. Let’s look at the five best pitchers that have blessed the MLB with their skill sets over the years.

The MLB is the league where you can see the best baseball players in the world. When it comes to pitchers, you always have a world-class player throwing the ball every game. Back in the day, pitchers were already good but when the 21st century rolled around, they have improved because of new techniques.

You can expect some big names to pop up in this list because the quality of pitching has been amazing in the 21st century. The MLB is filled with so many stellar pitchers and we will dive into some of the biggest names that have reinvented how pitching is played in the modern era.

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Jacob deGrom

When he was drafted in the ninth round of the 2010 MLB Draft by the New York Mets, the fans were excited. He was still playing shortstop back then but he found his calling by becoming a pitcher.

DeGrom made his debut in 2014 and he has been one of the strongest players in the MLB as he always puts on a show with his pitches. He is a mainstay for the Mets and he will most likely end his career with the ball club. He is a fantastic pitcher who deserves all of the respect because of what he’s done in his career.

Over the years, deGrom continued to improve on his skill set. That is difficult to do given that he’s already known as a top pitcher but he wants to improve more. That is a sign of a superstar mindset and it has worked for him and the Mets since 2014. DeGrom wants to remain loyal to the ballclub and it is up to the Mets if they can surround him with talented players.

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Max Scherzer

Since he started his career back in 2008, Max Scherzer has been one of the most reliable pitchers in the world. He is a proven player over the years, no matter what team he plays for. Of course, the Washington Nationals stint stands out because he won a World Series with the team in 2019.

Max signed a new deal with the Mets and he’s playing with deGrom. That mix of legendary pitchers makes them a huge threat for the World Series but they will still have to rely on their batters and other defenders to step up when needed.

For Max, he deserves the spotlight as one of the 21st century’s best pitchers because he has proven that he’s world-class since he entered the major leagues. He is a star player who deserves all the accolades, especially the three Cy Young Awards he won in 2013, 2016, and 2017.

You can always count on Max to have a strong legacy because of what he did with his previous teams. With the Mets, he has the chance to prove he can co-exist with another legendary pitcher. Max will be a huge part of the future because he can teach younger pitchers how to help a title-contender.

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Justin Verlander

Justin Verlander started to play in the MLB back in 2005 and he has always been a strong pitcher. He was a strong member of the Detroit Lions for more than a decade but he had a solid stint for the Houston Astros where he won his World Series.

Justin has a rich legacy of insane pitches that you can watch online. He has a variety of pitches that are nigh-impossible to hit. He also manages to keep up with the shots as he proved that he’s still speedy even if he was an elder statesman late into his stint with the Astros.

In terms of accolades, Justin deserves the spotlight. His prime might have passed already but he will go down as one of the best pitchers of the 21st century.

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Mariano Rivera

While he was mostly known as a reliever, Mariano Rivera deserves a spot in the top pitchers of the 21st century so far. He managed to keep himself in the All-Star conversation every year and he also won two World Series titles. He retired in 2013 but he left a lasting legacy as one of the best players in baseball.

Rivera is known for his cut fastball which is his main weapon against top batters. This kind of sharp pitches was what made him famous and it shouldn’t be a surprise if he kept this up. This was vastly different from how he played earlier in his career where he was more known as a power pitcher who took big risks.

In terms of pitching skill sets, Rivera is a solid candidate for the deepest bag of tricks. He has so many options when he’s pitching and he serves as the stabilizing factor for the New York Yankees over his near-two-decade career.

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Clayton Kershaw

When it comes to raw statistics, it is hard to go against Clayton Kershaw. He has been a stellar player ever since he entered the MLB and he has three Cy Young Awards to prove it. He is a superstar pitcher and those who disagree do not watch baseball intently.

Kershaw deserves his respect because he has worked hard to become one of the best pitchers of the century so far. It will be difficult to narrow it down to just one player but it will be a hot debate among the fans. Hopefully, there will be new names that can challenge pitchers since new talent will come in.

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Words: Cholo Martin

Image: PA