"That’s what keeps me invested. [The knuckleball] can grow. It’s not just an inanimate thing. It’s very much a living thing. It’s very organic." The relationship between Dickey and his knuckleball wasn’t always at this lofty place, with Dickey holding a 2.69 earned run average roughly a third of the way through the season. Theirs was an arranged marriage — forced upon them seven years ago by the management of the Texas Rangers, who noted Dickey’s expanding ERA and declining velocity, and suggested, in no uncertain terms, that for the sake of his own career he reinvent himself as a knuckleballer.