3 Baseball Tips That Youth Baseball Players Can Do Without!

I would love to hear your thoughts.

Man do I ever get push back on the “end up in fielding position” thing…my response is usually…how much arm/injury did Maddux save with those 16 Gold Gloves???

So you encourage getting into fielding position because of Greg Maddux.

I forgot to teach those three things. :o

Is there any hope?

I consider him the most obvious example as why ending up there is a good thing, I wouldn’t say hes why I think that way.

I am new to coaching and have been trying to absorb much knowledge, lessons and techniques as I can while trying to integrate those with an 8-10 year olds maturation and development levels. The L is one we instruct but I admit my heart isn’t totally into it. Personally, I throw that way, but it was introduced to me when I was a sophomore in high school. Is it as effective for players who havent hit a growth spurt yet?

Regardless, I am very hard pressed to see it done systematically across all baseball levels.

How do I fight a kid’s experience seeing Craig Kimbrel or Jose Valerde closing the door on their teams wins?

What are your referring to when you mention the two MLB pitchers?

The behind the ear releases mostly but there appear to be several other “unconventional” issues.

The kids see these highlights constantly thanks to MLBN and mlb.com

Just saw the articel thinktank, gotta say I enjoyed it.

Many travel ball coaches tried to get my son into that fielding position at finish. Never worked and caused discussions between the coaches and me, some heated.

One genius actually told me that I needed to change pitching coaches cause my son would never advance to HS ball as a pitcher, because he throws low three quarter and doesn’t get to that precious “L” position. Uh yeah, he was wrong.

Parents, be careful who coaches your sons.

Yes, be very careful. If a coach tries to change a pitcher’s natural motion, at any level, for whatever reason (or even no reason at all)—RUN!
I was very fortunate to have as my pitching coach an active major league pitcher who had a basic premise: that every pitcher has a natural motion, whatever it is, and that the thing to do is work with said pitcher and show him or her how to use it to full advantage. I was a natural, honest-to-gosh sidearmer, and when I met Eddie Lopat for the first time the first thing he did was answer my question—I just wanted to ask him something about the slider, and his response was to take me aside and show me how to throw a good one. We worked together for almost four years, and what I learned from him—about strategic pitching and all the rest of it—was nothing short of priceless.
This kid you mention, the one who throws a low 3/4—almost sidearm—has a distinct advantage, because that delivery is actually easier on the arm and shoulder than just about anything else. The alphabet-soup concept is just that—alphabet soup, meant to be eaten and not messed around with on the mound. I can see this kid making it through high school, college and what else may come up because he has a delivery that enables him to throw just about anything; the coach should just shut up on the subject and either concentrate on what’s imnportant, like balance, control and command, throwing strikes and such, or get the heck out of the way and just let the kid pitch. 8)

Although I agree that there is no reason to get into an L, I disagree with NEVER EVER changing a pitchers arm angle, I’ve seen plenty of pitchers get switched from throwing “over the top” to “sidearm” and that opened them up to the path to the big leagues.

Myself personally with the help with my pitching coaches in the Nationals organization lowered my arm angle from “straight over the top” to “3/4” and I have seen a significant improvement in velocity and location.

Personally as a pitching coach I’ve seen a lot of kids throw from different arm angles pitching versus them being in the field, I also feel that if a pitchers arm angle is causing the pitchers head to come off line and start to drift towards first or third base and it doesn’t look natural or forced then I think there is a need to look into seeing if there is a more natural arm angle that the said pitcher needs to be throwing from. Sometimes a pitcher sub-consciously will drop or raise their arm angle through bad habits and when that happens it needs to be changed or they are already throwing from an arm angle that is either A)leading them towards injury or B)causing their mechanics to suffer.

I think there is a time and place to change arm angles but I agree it needs to be handled delicately and I believe the pitching coach has to have video and verbal proof to back it up.