ESPN – Former reliever Brian Wilson is planning a comeback — as a knuckleballer. Wilson hasn’t pitched professionally since 2014 with the Los Angeles Dodgers, but he recently has thrown for at least two teams, Yahoo Sports reports.
If there is anyone who deserves to have a second career as a knuckleballer it’s Brian Wilson. That guy is batshit crazy in the mold of someone like Bill the Spaceman Lee. Coming off his second Tommy John surgery, the days of Wilson throwing triple digits are in the rear view mirror. So we need Wilson to get good at knuckleballs and fast. Knuckleballers are notoriously a little odd, probably just because its one of those positions that so few people can relate to. You’re basically on your own trying to figure out how to make this whiffle ball pitch good enough to strike out major league hitters while throwing 60 mph meatballs.
There’s so few pitchers that have been good at consistently throwing knuckleballs that its almost impossible to groom in a player. I mean the Red Sox had one of the best knuckleball pitchers ever in Tim Wakefield so a guy like Steven Wright definitely had a huge advantage.
As a knuckleballer, Wilson likely would attempt to move from relief to a starting role. “I can already see myself out there,” he told Yahoo, “throwing up some waffles.”
But can you imagine a former flamethrower in Wilson, a guy who used to throw up some sort of UFC/MMA “X” with his arms after nailing down a save, a guy who legit painted his beard with shoe polish so it would be jet black, that guy coming back as a slow pitch softball player on the mound? Just lofting knuckles hoping they don’t get hit to the goddamn moon? Would be A+ viewing material. Plus he’s a New Hampshire guy, so he’s definitely already a little bit off. He was born for this.