Giants closer Camilo Doval slams door on Padres with record-tying pitch

·2 min read

Doval's record-tying pitch slams door on heart of Padres lineup originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

SAN DIEGO -- Camilo Doval occasionally will peak at the scoreboard after strikeouts, and he knew he had to when Monday's game ended. The final pitch to Josh Bell felt particularly firm, and when Doval turned around, he saw 103 on the scoreboard.

"I hope that is correct," he told himself.

Technically, the cutter registered at 102.9 mph. But that still makes it one of the most impressive recorded pitches in Giants history.

The pitch was the fastest of Doval's career and is tied with a Brian Wilson pitch in 2009 for the fastest by a Giant since pitch tracking began in 2008. What made it even more impressive is that it capped a 1-2-3 ninth against Juan Soto, Manny Machado and Bell with a one-run lead. Doval got a groundout, soft lineout and strikeout.

Doval threw 12 pitches, and four of them hit triple digits, including three sinkers. That's a pitch he started mixing in just before the All-Star break, and the Giants are hopeful it'll be a game-changer for his repertoire.

"He's using the sinker a lot. It might not necessarily be how you would draw it up attack-wise, but it's working and we're going to ride with what's working with him," catcher Joey Bart said. "I don't think there's any reason to try to change it. I think he has in the past been so slider-heavy and we're obviously going to mix off-speed when we can, but the way that his sinker is coming out of his hand, it's really, really not fun to hit.

"Props to him for coming in and seeing Soto, Manny Machado and Josh Bell and slamming the door. That's big-time stuff."

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The save was Doval's 15th and one of his most stressful. The three hitters he faced have combined for 54 homers this season, but Doval attacked and got through them quickly. The final pitch gave him nine career pitches at 102 mph or above, the most by any Giant in the pitch-tracking era.

"They're really good hitters, obviously," he said. "I went in and concentrated and went in and attacked the strike zone. That's the one thing I can control."

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