Any Reason Why Oswalt Does this?

Oswalt plants his pivot foot not parallel but slanted (with the toes pointing inward toward the plate) I was thinking that it helped with his hip rotation velocity. But I never saw this or heard of it so I don’t know what others might know about it.

Any thoughts on this? pros/cons

I notice in the video that there is a hole in front of the rubber where he plants his pivot foot. Perhaps it’s the hole that his pivot foot is conforming to, and nothing else.


I’ve coached pitchers to do just that - slant the pivot foot slightly towards home plate with the toe. Why? Because this slight adjustment with the pivot foot will accent the body to deliberately change the “bite” on every breaking pitch in a pitcher’s inventory.

If you have a slider and you want it to bite hard - like in a backdoor slider - this is the foot plant that you want to groom. If you have a cutter that you want to bite down hard with - this is the foot plant that you want to groom. Do you want a curve ball that comes in with a late breaking sweep - this is the foot plant that you want to groom.

With fastballs, some pitchers have a greater tendency to go inside with a higher rate of sucess with this kind of pivot foot posture.

How do you know it’s the right thing for you? Take a video camera with you and go through every pitch in your inventory with your standard foot plant. Deliver enough pitches to give you a good sample of what your normal stuff looks like. Then, alter your foot plant and watch the influence on each pitch change - and change it will, big time.

Excellent observation here. Outstanding.

Coach B.

Coach B’s explanation is very interesting and certainly presents something to think about.

I’ve also heard of coaches endorsing this position to better engage the stronger muscles of the quadriceps as the pitcher moves toward the target. Oswalt is a “speed” guy moving very fast toward the target. Perhaps this foot position helps him get going.

Brett Strom teaches this. I remember reading somewhere on this forum that Koufax did this also.

The load on the back leg feels a lot heavier with the foot slanted. My back hip wants to open up right away but I have to hold it back until I land…then once I land it releases all that tension.

Next time I toss I’m going to monkey with it.

I looked at Tim Lincecum playing catch on some youtube vids and he does this also.

*At 0:22 you can see him turn his pivot foot inward

**Starting at 0:25 you can see him playing catch and his pivot foot is cleary slanted inward while warming up

I read an article once about a year ago about Oswalt’s mechanics. He said that the reason slants his foot is because as a kid he never understood why people planted their foot perpendicular to go forward. He wanted to take it like a running start to the plate so he slanted his toe inward a little.

I do it also. It helps your hips get rotated towards the target quicker.

Kevinbert20 is right. It helps turn your hips faster and quicker resulting in more power if you use it right.

it really helps with hip rotation because when you want to open up your hips to allow full rotation you lift your pivot foot heel so the weight is on the ball of the foot (one of the reasons why it’s important to keep the weight on the balls of the feet).

With the slant, your weight naturally goes onto the ball of the foot as you stride gets further toward the plate.

You can still be fine by not slanting your foot, just make sure you keep the weight on the ball of the pivot foot and allow the heel to rise. If you kept your heel planted throughout the whole delivery you wouldn’t get any power from the hips because the heel planted would keep them locked. And you would be throwing all arm.

probably to get better hip roation and his lower body mechanics better.