20 Yr Old Pitcher *Need To Develop Stride and Use Legs*


#1

Names Ryan, and I’m a 20 Year old pitcher in my Sophmore year at Concordia University Ann Arbor. I currently throw in the range of 82-86mph on my 4SFB and have topped out around 87-88mph (this is in late fall, so may increase as arm gets stronger) I also throw a Good Hard Splitty, and am Working on a Change-up…

The one thing that I am trying to figure out is how to incorporate my core and legs into my wind-up alot more, as I currenty throw mainly all arm. At 6’5" and 220lb, i know learning how to utilize my whole body will get me to crack that 90mph mark, and could easily help me become a more effective pitcher by increasing movement on my fastball…

You’ll notice in clips, short stride and not great leg finish as it sorta just coasts through… Also some old clips from 4-5 years ago… feel free to go to youtube, and leave your comments there too…

Any help would be greatly appreciated thanks :smiley:


#2

ps: Basically looking for any tips or advice… Drills or things I could do to help me incorporate the full body into my wind-up…

What are things you currently do?


#3

When I was a kid, I went to Yankee Stadium (the original ballpark) every chance I got, and I watched the pitchers—in practice, warming up and during games. I noticed that the Yankees’ Big Three rotation (Allie Reynolds, Vic Raschi and Ed Lopat) were all doing the same thing: they were driving off the lower half of the body, using the legs, the hips and the torso in one continuous motion, and that was how they were getting the power behind their pitches—not to mention the fact that doing this took a lot of pressure off the arm and the shoulder, because as a result the arms and shoulders of those guys were just going along for the ride. They were throwing harder with much less effort, and there wasn’t a sore arm or a sore shoulder or a sore anything else in that triumvirate. I saw exactly how they were doing it, and I made a note of it and started working on this on my own. As I practiced this essential aspect of good mechanics I found myself doing the same thing—throwing harder with much less effort. I wasn’t what you’d call fast, but somewhere along the line I picked up an 81MPH four-seam fast ball that I called my “whoops” pitch, and I incorporated it into my arsenal.
There are several things you can do to get your whole body into the action, which is what you obviously need to do. One such is a maneuver called the Hershiser drill which aims at getting the hips fully involved, and you can start with that. You can find other such drills on this website; Steven Ellis has a collection of them and will be glad to show them to you and demonstrate how to do them.
A couple of tips: first, watch your release point. If you let go of the ball too soon the pitch is going to be low, and conversely, if you release the ball too late the pitch will be way high. You want to be sure that release point is where you want it so you can consistently get the ball over for strikes. Second, be sure to follow through all the way and don’t pull back as some pitchers who don’t know any better are prone to do. You want to finish your pitches and end up in a good fielding position—don’t forget, when a pitcher steps off the rubber he becomes a fifth infielder, and you have to be in position to do the things infielders have to do. And here’s something Satchel Paige once said regarding control and command: "Throw strikes. Home plate don’t move."
Bedst of luck. :slight_smile: 8) :baseballpitcher:


#4

[quote=“Zita Carno”] One such is a maneuver called the Hershiser drill which aims at getting the hips fully involved, and you can start with that. You can find other such drills on this website; Steven Ellis has a collection of them and will be glad to show them to you and demonstrate how to do them.

Bedst of luck. :slight_smile: 8) :baseballpitcher:[/quote]

You have a link to this site/or forum section??? Are there more drills you could show me video clips, or get me links too??? I also messaged Steven Ellis, so hopefully he will be able to help out with those… I feel like getting my boddy incorporated could take me to low 90’s or further, less strain on my shoulder and elbow, and more accuracy with my 4SFB, which are all sweet benefits on my journey to try and go pro!

Thanks for the comment! Hopefully more to come…


#5

Ryan,

You appear to be a pitcher who’s been taught the up-down-and-out front leg movement with maybe a dose of “stay back” thrown in. Unfortunately, that up-down movement before starting to move forward does two things: (1) it makes you late to start forward and it leads to keeping your weight back while just your front leg move forward.

Watch your own videos and pay attention to when your body starts to move forward relative to your knee lift. Also pay attention to how far and how fast your body moves forward - not your front leg but your total body. You’ll see that your body doesn’t move forward until after the peak of your knee lift and then it doesn’t move that fast or that far.

To engage your lower half more, you need to get your center of mass moving forward sooner (before peak of knee lift) and faster.

The Hershiser drill is an NPA drill where you simply stand next to a padded wall or chain link fence, lift your knee and stride your front hip into the wall/fence. Stand with your posting foot about 2 of your shoe lengths from the wall/fence. Push your front hip or maybe a little bit of your back pocket into the wall/fence - your front hip should be the only part of your body touching the wall/fence. Focus on the timing of when you push your hip into the wall/fence - get it going before peak of knee lift. There is nothing magical about this drill - it’s a “feel” drill that helps you get a feel for the timing of getting the hips moving early (and also of leading with the front hip into your stride).

Another drill to use is the cross-over drill. Start in your set position. Then cross your stride foot over the posting foot so that your stride foot is on top of the rubber. Bend both knees so that both feet are flat on the ground. Now stick your front hip out towards home plate. From that position, lift your knee and go. This starting position positions you so that your front hip is already leading the way and you’ve created a significant weight imbalance such that as soon as you lift your stride foot gravity starts pushing you forward. Make sure you don’t cheat on your knee lift. In fact, getting yourself going in this manner will let you be quick enough to the plate that you can use a knee lift even with runners on base.

If you know how to do the towel drill, you can also do a cross-over version of the towel drill.


#6

[quote=“Roger”]Ryan,

You appear to be a pitcher who’s been taught the up-down-and-out front leg movement with maybe a dose of “stay back” thrown in. Unfortunately, that up-down movement before starting to move forward does two things: (1) it makes you late to start forward and it leads to keeping your weight back while just your front leg move forward.

To engage your lower half more, you need to get your center of mass moving forward sooner (before peak of knee lift) and faster.

The Hershiser drill is an NPA drill where you simply stand next to a padded wall or chain link fence, lift your knee and stride your front hip into the wall/fence. Stand with your posting foot about 2 of your shoe lengths from the wall/fence. Push your front hip or maybe a little bit of your back pocket into the wall/fence - your front hip should be the only part of your body touching the wall/fence. Focus on the timing of when you push your hip into the wall/fence - get it going before peak of knee lift. There is nothing magical about this drill - it’s a “feel” drill that helps you get a feel for the timing of getting the hips moving early (and also of leading with the front hip into your stride).

Another drill to use is the cross-over drill. Start in your set position. Then cross your stride foot over the posting foot so that your stride foot is on top of the rubber. Bend both knees so that both feet are flat on the ground. Now stick your front hip out towards home plate. From that position, lift your knee and go. This starting position positions you so that your front hip is already leading the way and you’ve created a significant weight imbalance such that as soon as you lift your stride foot gravity starts pushing you forward. Make sure you don’t cheat on your knee lift. In fact, getting yourself going in this manner will let you be quick enough to the plate that you can use a knee lift even with runners on base.[/quote]

Yes I checked out the Herschiser Drill and I Love it already, just from doing a few, and then measuring my stride length after, it has helped gain a couple inches already, and I’m sure as i get more confortable that could increase…

Thanks for the other drill, and insight! I appreciate it a ton! I will go back and watch my video, and then hopfully once i make my new video for youtube, i could compare the difference between the two strides, and hopefully the results show in velocity, movement and accuracy aswelll…

Thanks Again!