The Cubs may not have won a game in New York this weekend, but they came away with something far more valuable as Frank Schwindel set a silly pitching record that will surely never be broken. Trailing 17-4 and with the bullpen already taxed from the two previous losses, David Ross turned to his first baseman to stop the bleeding. Sending Anthony Rizzo into a jealous rage was surely part of the manager’s motivation as well.
Schwindel’s very first offering was an Eephus pitch clocked at 35.1 mph and spinning at a mere 776 rpm, numbers you aren’t likely to see beyond the lowest levels of player-pitch youth ball. For context, the lowest average spin on a changeup — which is typically thrown in such a way to kill spin — is 1,157 rpm from Nick Pivetta.
This particular pitch looked more like something you’d bust out in bags or horseshoes as it actually got as high as the score bug at its apex. It was so late getting to the plate that American Airlines actually assigned it a flight number. The layover was a brief one, however, as Kyle Higashioka turned it around at 95.9 mph to land 376 happy feet away in left field.
This 35.1 MPH Frank Schwindel pitch is the slowest (known/measured) MLB pitch to ever get hit for a home run! pic.twitter.com/oSO3sLnUyo
— Codify (@CodifyBaseball) June 12, 2022
Per Codify, this is the slowest known pitch ever to be hit for a home run. That kind of accolade is going to last far longer than simply playing a competitive game in which position players are actually able to, you know, play their normal positions. The other fun takeaway here is that Scwindel’s Frank the Tank nickname now applies to both the Cubs’ competitive strategy and the hits he allows.