I was talking with some baseball aficiandos recently and asked them to think up the most common descriptor of left-handed and right-handed pitchers. They agreed quickly on “big farm kid” for righties (runner up: “Hard-throwing”) and “crafty” for lefties (runner up: “wily”).
Jesse Wolfersberger believes that this linguistic distinction has it roots in reality. He presents statistical analysis indicating that left-handed pitchers are better at striking out batters with off-speed, tricky, curving pitches rather than straight-at-you fastballs.
You can see what you think of his analysis by following the link, but even if it holds water I doubt that is the full explanation because it leaves out the moral nuance of the contrasting descriptors.
The idea that the right side is morally better than the “sinister” side goes back centuries, and we have not fully escaped it even though we recognize that it has no logical basis. “Crafty” is not too far from “sneaky/dishonest”. Meanwhile, consider the descriptor “big farm kid” for righties. That doesn’t just imply strength; it also connotes All-American wholesomeness. Many right-handers certainly grow up in cities and many left-handers grow up on farms, yet it would feel strange to hear a baseball announcer speak of a left-handed pitcher as a “farm kid”.
Likewise, there have many been right-handed pitchers who didn’t just manfully throw a straight and true fastball down the pipe, challenging their opponents honestly like Arthurian Knights at the jousts. Knuckle ball masters Phil Niekro, Joe Niekro and Tim Wakefield all pitched right-handed. And the New York Yankees, whom all God-fearing people agree are servants of Satan, have employed many right-handed pitchers over the years.