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David Brown

Ryan Dempster's Pre-Pitch Glove Flip: An Appreciation

David Brown
Big League Stew

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Though he's labored through three innings — 61 pitches and four walks already — Cubs ace Ryan Dempster has kept the Dodgers off the board with his grit, nicely-formed playoff beard and that little glove-flip he does before delivering each pitch. Here, BLS contributor David Brown offers a tribute to Dempster's quirky habit.

His glove-hand wave recalls a slice of Daniel-san "doing the crane" in Karate Kid I, II or III.

Or a spasming beauty queen.

Or a hairier Madonna suggesting she wants to Vogue again.

Strike a pose. Strike again. Strike three, you're out!

Ryan Dempster has joked that he's just fanning himself but all he's really been is being fashionably quirky on the way to a 17-6 record, an All-Star selection and starting the first game of the playoffs for the Cubs.

Every time he winds and throws, Dempster risks angering the Carpal Tunnel Gods, but he does his little shell game, anyway, to distract hitters from zoning in on what might be a split-fingered fastball grip. Or not. Batters don't know. Because, at least in part, Dempster does his little glove flip.

A judo, chop-chop-chop!

He was born to hand jive, baby!

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