9yr old son's mechanics - please comment


#1

The following are links to a side and rear view video of my 9 yr old son pitching.
[www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncph7XOnv8Q] Side view

[www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hqc74THMQ2Q] Rear view

These videos were taken 3-19. The only thing we have changed since then is to get his momentum going forward when his lift leg reaches its apex.

The main problem we have at this point is his release point, which is sometimes too soon and causes him to miss high. I notice this problem seems to occurr more frequently when he does not get a high leg lift. What are the best drills to correct this problem?

Also need help on the mental side. During practice he will throw 70-80% strikes with good velocity (43-45 mph), but in a game it sometimes decreases dramatically and he struggles.


#2

I’m pretty sure those two clips show two different kids. What’s up with that?

The blond-haired lefty in the side view looks really good to me. The only thing I’d suggest working on is to get him moving toward home plate sooner. Right now, he doesn’t start forward until his lift knee goes up and all the way back down. Get him to push his hips sideways toward the target sooner without reducing his knee lift. (He’ll have to get the stride leg out front a bit quicker.) Otherwise, he looks really good for such a young kid.

The righty in the rear view takes his throwing arm way back an around toward 1B. I don’t mind going beyond 180 degrees back a little bit. But I think this boy goes too far. He also lets his glove arm fly open leading to a big posture change (lean to the glove side). Try to get him to keep the glove arm up and in front until the front foot plants. Then simply tuck the elbow down, turn the glove over and bring the chest to the glove. That will keep him from flying open and should minimize, if not eliminate, the posture problem.


#3

Sorry. I uploaded the video of one of my other 9 yr old pitchers. Here is the link to the rear view of my son pitching.

I noticed that he pulls his rear foot off the ground before releasing the ball. According to Tom House the rear foot should be dragging before release and I notice that to be the case with most of the professional pitchers I have examined. Is the rear foot coming off the ground before release a trailing indicator that indicates a flaw somewhere else in the delivery?


#4

I also noticed the absence of a foot drag as well but don’t think it is an issue in your son’s case. The foot lifting off the ground can be an indicator of a flaw. Specifically, it can indicate that the head and shoulders are getting out front too soon. But in your son’s case, I think it is his lack of tempo that shortens his stride and prevents him from dragging the back foot. Get him to increase his tempo as I described previously and see if that helps. It does take both strength and flexibility in the low back to keep the head and shoulders stacked upright into release and that is what keeps the back foot on the ground instead of lifting.


#5

Coach,

I’d refer you to my observations on your other pitcher. This kid doesn’t have all of the same faults but some like follow-through and pitching line.


#6

I’m with Roger on the tempo issue. He actually pauses when the foot comes back down. A marked hesitation there. Do what Roger said.