Who holds the MLB record for the fastest pitch?

Aroldis Chapman made the fastest pitch in the history of MLB.
Michael Bennington
Monday November 14, 2022

Table of Contents

At 105.8 mph, Aroldis Chapman is known to have thrown the fastest pitch in MLB history. On September 24, 2010, Chapman made history in the MLB. When he was a rookie relief pitcher for the Cincinnati Reds, the fireballer threw a fastball at Tony Gwynn Jr. of the Padres at Petco Park in San Diego, California, that was timed at 105.1 miles per hour. The next year, Chapman did it again, and an All-Star outfielder, Andrew McCutchen, was almost hit in the face by a wild throw nearing his earlier record. A few years later, the Yankees were the ones who went through the same thing. On July 18, 2016, Chapman threw a 105.1 mph fastball, the fastest pitch in the Yankees’ history, against the Baltimore Orioles to end the game in the ninth inning.

On June 20, 2021, Aroldis Chapman threw a pitch at Matt Chapman at 103.4 mph, which was also the fastest pitch of that year.

Some of the fastest pitchers in 2022 threw faster than 103 mph, and many relievers and even a few starters could easily hit 102 mph. In 2022, the average speed of a fastball in MLB was the fastest pitch it has ever been.

Jeff Passan of ESPN wrote about how hot pitchers were on the mound in the 2022 season. Back in 2008, only three pitchers in the playoffs threw fastballs that were 100 mph or faster. In 2022, there were 164 pitchers whose fastballs reached triple digits. In fact, 2022 is the year of the fastest pitches.

It’s all part of the revolution, including movement and spin, which are essential for off-speed pitches, while velocity is prized for fastballs. The numbers reflect how baseball has changed, as we detail further below with data on the fastest pitches in 2022.

On September 22, slugger Josh Bell of the San Diego Padres was hit by a 104 mph fastball from St. Louis Cardinals reliever Ryan Helsley. The 104-mph pitch hit Bell in the head, and that was the last out of the eighth inning. It also became the fastest pitch in MLB in 2022.


On August 19, Jordan Hicks, a reliever for the St. Louis Cardinals, threw a 103.7 mph fastball, which was the second-fastest pitch in MLB this season. Hicks used to be a starting pitcher, but now he works great as a reliever. His stuff is electric, and one of his throws is the fastest pitch in MLB in terms of average mph and peak mph.

MLB pitchers with the fastest pitch

Here are ten of the fastest pitchers in Major League Baseball history, based on their recorded pitching speeds:

  • Aroldis Chapman is the fastest pitcher in baseball history, with a recorded pitch speed of 105.1 mph.
  • Jordan Hicks is currently one of the fastest pitchers in the league, with a recorded speed of 105 mph in 2018.
  • Mauricio Cabrera was a reliever for the Atlanta Braves and regularly hit triple digits with his fastball, with a recorded pitch speed of 103.8 mph in 2016.
  • Neftali Feliz, a closer for the Texas Rangers, regularly threw in the high 90s, with a recorded pitch speed of 103.2 mph in 2010.
  • Joel Zumaya was a hard-throwing reliever for the Detroit Tigers with a recorded pitch speed of 103 mph in 2006.
  • Henry Rodriguez, a reliever for the Washington Nationals, threw at 103 mph in 2011.
  • Kelvin Herrera of the Kansas City Royals recorded his fastest pitch at 102.5 mph in 2017.
  • Yordano Ventura of the Kansas City Royals touched 102.5 mph in 2014.
  • Noah Syndergaard, the New York Mets’ starter, went to 101.9 mph in 2016.
  • Stephen Strasburg of the Nationals threw his fastest pitch at 101.5 mph in 2010.

Yankees pitchers to throw the fastest pitches

Here are the ten Yankee pitchers who are considered to be the fastest in terms of their pitching speed:

  • Aroldis Chapman’s fastest pitch for the Yankees was at 105.1 mph in 2016.
  • Dellin Betances went with a top speed of 100.2 mph recorded in 2016.
  • Luis Severino’s fastball has topped out at 101.2 mph in 2021.
  • Joba Chamberlain burst onto the scene with the Yankees in 2007 and quickly became known for his high-velocity fastball, which reached 100.1 mph.
  • Andrew Miller threw at a top speed of 98.7 mph in 2016.
  • Mariano Rivera was not known for his raw speed, but his signature cutter was one of the most devastating pitches in baseball history, and regularly clocked in the low 90s.
Mariano Rivera
  • Chad Green often threw at 98-99 mph.
  • David Robertson regularly reaches the mid-to-upper 90s.
  • Nick Rumbelow only made a handful of appearances for the Yankees, but he made an impression with his fastball, which was regularly clocked in the high 90s.
  • Jacob Lindgren had a brief stint with the Yankees, but he pitched high-velocity fastballs and a sharp slider.

Does speed give pitchers any advantage?

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