advice

ive been mainly working my fastball and football-change (12-6) in season and off season and i was wondering a good pitch to develop at my age (14) that would be effective againest batters but yet wont put to much strain on my arm.
*my dad wont let me throw a curve till im 15 becuase of alot of kids hurting there arms with it so that kinda knocks it out of the picture

Try learning either a cutter, sinker, or just a 2-seam FB that will move and run in on same handed batters. These pitches won’t cause any extra strain on your arm (unless not thrown properly) and can be valuable as you mature and progress in the sport.

“Any pitch thrown properly is no more stressful than any other pitch thrown properly.” Not sure who exactly said that, but it was someone with the NPA. Blitzblau I think. Anyways, there is a right way to throw a curveball that will not put anymore stress on the arm than a fastball. I don’t want to discuss it over a forum, but if I have time to make video, I will. The problem with telling you on a forum is that it leaves too much room for error. We don’t like error. :slight_smile: I’ll try to find some time for that…I have a clinic going on this weekend at home, so I’ll try to tape some instruction.

[quote=“drew_14”]ive been mainly working my fastball and football-change (12-6) in season and off season and i was wondering a good pitch to develop at my age (14) that would be effective againest batters but yet wont put to much strain on my arm.
*my dad wont let me throw a curve till im 15 becuase of alot of kids hurting there arms with it so that kinda knocks it out of the picture[/quote]

Two and four seam fastball and changeup are all you should need until high school. I would keep the football change as a breaking pitch if you can control it, but wouldn’t use it too much against the hitters I’ve seen at this age group. The football change breaks, but it comes in so slow that any hitter who has a decent hitting coach will eventually catch up to it. Its a good pitch to show, but not to throw if you get my meaning.

A circle change, 3 finger change, or palm ball are good changeups options, with the circle the best in mho. If thrown correctly, it looks like a FB and will drop and tail. Plus, my son’s pitching coach (12 year MLB pitcher) tells me every pitcher in the minors is taught a change-up if they don’t already have a good one. Felix Hernandez had a 95 mph FB and a power curve by 17 years old, but was still required to learn the change. Now if he could just throw it for strikes…

Hose

[quote=“NPA Pitcher”]

“Any pitch thrown properly is no more stressful than any other pitch thrown properly.” N[/quote]

That quote, and many like it which presume medical knowledge, are suspect in my view. I think that throwing a straight ball (or rock, or spear, or any organic throwing motion) generally puts stress on the arm and shoulder, and any pitch that requires the thrower to unnaturally manipulate his or her body in order to throw it would appear to be likely to cause more stress. My son is 15 and throws a low-stress curve, so I’m not saying it should be banned until the kid is 18 (like I believe Marshall suggests), but every pitcher and every pitcher’s parent should be aware that there is no free lunch, and that pitching by its nature is a risky business.

Hose

A good pitch that takes time but thats really effective for me once I got it is the knucle curve. Aiming is really hard at first but once you get it down its a really good replacement for a changup.

[quote=“hoseman18”][quote=“NPA Pitcher”]

“Any pitch thrown properly is no more stressful than any other pitch thrown properly.” N[/quote]

That quote, and many like it which presume medical knowledge, are suspect in my view. I think that throwing a straight ball (or rock, or spear, or any organic throwing motion) generally puts stress on the arm and shoulder, and any pitch that requires the thrower to unnaturally manipulate his or her body in order to throw it would appear to be likely to cause more stress. My son is 15 and throws a low-stress curve, so I’m not saying it should be banned until the kid is 18 (like I believe Marshall suggests), but every pitcher and every pitcher’s parent should be aware that there is no free lunch, and that pitching by its nature is a risky business.[/quote]

I agree with you. It’s going to put stress on the arm to throw, no matter what it is. The unnatural part of throwing a curveball or slider occurs when the wrist is snapped down or sideways. This results in very rapid supination to pronation. That’s generally how a pitcher blows out his elbow when throwing a breaking ball. There’s a reason some pitchers get surgery and some don’t. It’s all about throwing correctly.

[quote=“NPA Pitcher”]There’s a reason some pitchers get surgery and
some don’t. It’s all about throwing correctly.[/quote]
And limiting the number thrown.

Roger you got it right there …the young kids find so much success spinning the ball vs. immature hitters, they don’t have the discipline or motivation not to. And you certainly don’t want to depend on a coach to be the voice of reason …

Good point. Look at all the prepubescent kids having surgery now-a-days due to something their coach told them to do…It’s scary, and it makes me sick to my stomach.

I mentioned this a while back, but I think it’s worth bringing it up again: I think every youth coach should be trained in how to prepare pitchers. Pitch counts are great and all, step in the right direction, but if pitchers are unprepared, how much will it matter? Now I’m not talking about anything extreme, but it’s not that hard to make sure a kid does some arm cirlces and warms up properly before a game.

I was at a game last year and I watched the pitcher warm up. He played catch for a few minutes, then threw about 10 flat ground pitches and then he was in the game. Didn’t look prepared to me.

I also have a 14 year old pitcher that I work with who has a good arm and nice change up. He wanted to throw a curve last year which he picked up easily, but I told him to limit it’s use in games. NO 14 year old can hit a curve, just doesn’t happen. So obviously his coach called the pitches and called mostly curves all season. The kid ended up having some elbow soreness which has since subsided, but I was pretty mad that I predicted that scenario to him months earlier.

I know that many coaches are just volunteers, but they need to be more educated.

Good points, palo. I incorporated the dynamic warm-up routine taught by the NPA with my travel ball team a year and a half to two years ago. To this day, we have not had a single pulled muscle or any other injury that I would attribute to a lack of proper warm-ups.

Regarding coach needing education, you are dead on. And it’s not just the rookie volunteers. Many who have been coaching for a long time also need it. I’ve actually given thought to putting together an educational program to take around to all the Little Leagues in town. Might still do it.

[quote=“drew_14”]ive been mainly working my fastball and football-change (12-6) in season and off season and i was wondering a good pitch to develop at my age (14) that would be effective againest batters but yet wont put to much strain on my arm.
*my dad wont let me throw a curve till im 15 becuase of alot of kids hurting there arms with it so that kinda knocks it out of the picture[/quote]work on those two pitches until your 16…i suggest to throw a circle changeup…