R.A. Dickey's Show of gratitude

Blue Jays pitcher R.A. Dickey. (VERONICA HENRI/QMI Agency)

Blue Jays pitcher R.A. Dickey. (VERONICA HENRI/QMI Agency)

KEN FIDLIN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:48 PM ET

When he was managing the Texas Rangers in 2006, Buck Showalter, along with pitching coach Orel Hershiser, was a major influence in R.A. Dickey's early transformation from conventional pitcher to knuckleballer.

At the time, Dickey had been struggling for the better part of a decade to establish himself as a four-pitch big-league hurler. It would take him four more years to get control of the knuckler but when he did, he made it big. Without Showalter's encouragement and blessing, Dickey probably would be out of baseball now.

Wednesday afternoon, as he does every time he has a chance to make contact with Showalter, Dickey walked across the Rogers Centre field and exchanged a warm handshake and some animated conversation with Showalter, now manager of the Baltimore Orioles.


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