The Mad Hungarian: Remembering the craziest pitcher MLB has actually observed

The Mad Hungarian: Remembering the craziest pitcher MLB has actually observed

If someone said there seemed to be a man nicknamed “The Mad Hungarian,” what might your imagine?

a lonely copywriter resting at a typewriter from day to night with gray locks transferring every path? A chef whom took opportunities by tinkering with all kinds of weird meat and spices? Think about a significant category therapy pitcher with one of the most distinct and infuriating pre-pitch programs in the game’s history? The actual response is a significant league pitcher. Their name’s Al Hrabosky, and he had been certainly the Mad Hungarian.

Based on his look alone, there was no mistaking that Hrabosky ended up being someone of Hungarian ancestry. He’d long-hair and a thicker, dark beard, quite often displaying a Fu Manchu mustache that generated him seem completely menacing on a large category mound. But there are more the explanation why Hrabosky is known as Mad Hungarian rather than the normal Hungarian.

“How should I intimidate batters basically look like a golf pro?”

Al Hrabosky, after being forced to shave their facial hair

Over the years, Hrabosky created a program regarding the mound that was since memorable whilst had been ridiculous. Generally doing so with runners on base, around pitches Hrabosky would walking from the mound towards 2nd base, flipping their straight back throughout the batter. However take a breath, wipe the ball along with his hands very carefully, following slam golf ball into his glove. Just subsequently would Hrabosky step on the rubber and gaze on the batter as if the guy are complicated your to a duel. Enthusiasts treasured the theatrics, but together can imagine, opposing batters despised this type of histrionics from Mad Hungarian.

Normally, Hrabosky’s antics acquired him the reputation of a mad man with opposing team’s lovers. During a game title in Chicago in 1975, one lover tried exactly how mad Hrabosky got by leaning inside checking out bullpen at Wrigley Field and putting a live cockatoo about Mad Hungarian’s head. Hrabosky snatched the bird from their mind and endangered to literally bite their head down. Their teammates spoken him from the jawhorse, nevertheless simple threat only added to his purposefully-constructed reputation as someone who possess certain screws free.

“i’d like batters to imagine I’m crazy. I’d like them to discover I’m insane.”

In fact, it was this madness that Hrabosky feels generated him the pitcher he had been. He custom every at-bat as a one-on-one Professional dating review fight with the hitter. He wished the batter to-be nervous and he desired to penalize him when it comes to threat he posed to his very own group. It was that attitude and “the Mad Hungarian” image he so very carefully crafted that once made him one of the best relief pitchers in baseball.

“People might think I’m a weirdo whenever they read myself, nonetheless it’s some thing I’ve have got to manage. We see my personal fastball just average, however when We psych myself I’ll put it against anybody’s. It’s positive wondering. I envision my self organizing to a specific spot. I quickly understand batter move and neglect.

I allow your own struggle between your a couple of all of us by thinking about things he’s accomplished against my personal personnel. Too many pitchers resemble they truly are scared to death in the mound. Maybe not me. We just be sure to switch the specific situation around. I’d Like the hitter as afraid, to wonder easily am slightly insane.”

When all had been stated and completed, Hrabosky pitched 13 times when you look at the discipline, winning 64 video games, save 97, and posting a time of 3.10. Along with winning the 1975 NL Fireman of the season prize after respected the state group in spares that year, there’s little components on their trophy instance. Written down, it’s perhaps not a vocation that shines. However if you saw the Mad Hungarian pitch, few baseball people bring ever endured out a lot more.

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