Taped at Vero Beach Sports Village, the former Spring Training home of the Los Angeles Dodgers, each episode will feature the contestants learning from Wakefield how to throw this baffling pitch before facing challenges to test the effectiveness of their knuckleball. One contestant will be eliminated from the competition in each episode based on his performance and input from Wakefield and Millar. The winner will earn an invitation to the Arizona Diamondbacks' Spring Training camp and the chance to pitch for the D-backs in a Spring Training game.
The five are John David Booty, his older brother Josh, Doug Flutie, David Greene and Ryan Perrilloux. Interestingly, the MLB Network is careful to avoid mentioning much about any connection between these players and the NFL. They stress their college credentials even though all bar Perrilloux were drafted by NFL teams (though Greene never took the field, despite being part of four different teams. Flutie is the only one of whom I've ever heard, being a former Heisman trophy winner, but that probably says more about how much I care about football, i.e. very little.
It's an interesting, and yet curious choice to pick, firstly, football players, and secondly, quarterbacks to try and learn the esoteric art of the knuckleball. Obviously, they are the only members on a football team regularly tasked with throwing, but even I know that spinning the pigskin is an important part of the skill-set, giving the ball accuracy, in the same way a gun rifles the bullet. That's the exact opposite of what a knuckleball does: it's thrown with as little spin as possible, which is what causes it to dance through the air semi-randomly. It goes against just about every aspect of standard baseball practice.
MLB Network Reality Show: Former QBs Compete For D-backs Spring Training Spot
AZ Snake Pit | Feb 6