|Daniel Ray Herrera|
Herrera with the New York Mets
|Born: October 21, 1984|
|June 3, 2008, for the Cincinnati Reds|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 27, 2011, for the New York Mets|
|Earned run average||3.72|
Herrera became well known among baseball fans both for his small stature and for his unique pitch repertoire. He was one of the smallest pitchers in recent Major League Baseball history at 5' 6", and one of the few to throw a true screwball.
Herrera attended Permian High School in Odessa, Texas. Undrafted out of high school, he was chosen by the Texas Rangers in the 45th round of the 2006 Major League Baseball draft out of the University of New Mexico, where he played for the New Mexico Lobos baseball team. It was in college that Herrera developed his screwball (out of dissatisfaction with his changeup).
He made his Major League debut on June 3, 2008, pitching a scoreless inning. Entering the game with men on base and no outs, he induced Shane Victorino to ground out, and after an intentional walk to Chase Utley he struck out both Ryan Howard and Pat Burrell. Two days after his debut, he was optioned back to AAA Louisville to make room on the roster for starting pitcher Homer Bailey.
He was briefly recalled again on June 10, 2008; however, he was sent down just four days later when pitcher Gary Majewski returned from the bereavement list. He made just one appearance during his second stint, pitching two innings while giving up three runs on four hits, striking out two.
In 2009, Herrera made the Reds out of spring training. He recorded his first victory of his career on June 16, 2009 after relieving Aaron Harang in the top of the third inning following an extended rain delay. He pitched three scoreless innings, giving up two hits while striking out two.
On May 23, 2011, Herrera was claimed off waivers by the Milwaukee Brewers and optioned to the Nashville Sounds. He was designated for assignment on June 17, after making two appearances with Milwaukee.
On September 1, 2011, Herrera was named as one of the players to be named later that completed the July 12, 2011 trade for Francisco Rodríguez. On January 9, 2012, the Mets placed Herrera on waivers. On April 3, 2012 he was optioned to the Buffalo Bisons.
The Mets released Herrera in March 2013.
He became a free agent after the 2015 season.
Herrera threw six pitches. He had three fastballs -- a four-seamer (83-86 mph, topped out at 88), a two-seamer (82-85), and a cutter (81-84) -- as well as a curveball (75-78), a changeup (75-77), and a screwball (67-70). Herrera threw all of his pitches to hitters from both sides of the plate, with the exception of the changeup (which was only used against right-handed hitters). The screwball was his most common pitch in 2-strike counts, especially to righties. His most common pitch against left-handers as a whole was his curveball.
Media related to Daniel Herrera at Wikimedia Commons