Arm Slot


#1

My question is Would it hurt a 10 year old to try different arm slots to get different action on there pitches?The reason I ask is My Son’s arm slot normally is on top _i The other day He decides to try more of a 3/4 with His 4 seam and had a lot of downward byte like a sinker. My concern is His fingers are sliding off the bottom kind of like a curve i like the action but not enough to let Him hurt His self. Thanks Dsmith :smiley:


#2

What you have to be careful about is what I call “leading with his pinky” or preset supination (Also called getting outside of the ball), you’ll produce a natural cutter but it is really really tough on the shoulder. As long as his hand stays behind the ball (Which is what I’d be emphasizing in the instance of your son). A great way to make sure he understands how that happens is to put a piece of electrical tape around the circumferance of the ball, if his hand is behind it, it will make a solid line. Once this clicks he’ll begin to learn how to manipulate using finger location and pressure and seam combinations. Then you’ll get great action and as little arm/shoulder impact as possible.


#3

[quote=“jdfromfla”]What you have to be careful about is what I call “leading with his pinky” or preset supination (Also called getting outside of the ball), you’ll produce a natural cutter but it is really really tough on the shoulder. As long as his hand stays behind the ball (Which is what I’d be emphasizing in the instance of your son). A great way to make sure he understands how that happens is to put a piece of electrical tape around the circumferance of the ball, if his hand is behind it, it will make a solid line. Once this clicks he’ll begin to learn how to manipulate using finger location and pressure and seam combinations. Then you’ll get great action and as little arm/shoulder impact as possible.[/quote]My 10yo was pitching to me the other night and I noticed his 4seam moves down and into a rh batter, yet his 2seam moves down an away… Does that sound right? btw, he throws low 3/4 and kinda slides the thumb up the side for a better grip.


#4

Dsmith,

re: “Would it hurt a 10 year old to try different arm slots to get different action on there pitches?”

--------I believe that doing this sort of thing may hurt your son’s ability to develop a consistent set of mechanics. Consistent mechanics lead to a controlled, consistent release point for every pitch–a consistent release point is desirable, something that most pitchers strive for. Forget about the old saying, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds”. That may be fine advice for politicians, but for baseball pitchers a consistent release point is wise, not foolish.

If you look at pictures of some of the great pitchers, taken over the space of several years, something should jump out at you. Most of them have the same extremely (almost uncannily) consistent release point for all their pitches. That doesn’t mean that every pitch moves in the same way, at the same velocity, to the same spot in the strike zone–far from it. The type of grip used, and the pitcher’s control over his forearm, wrist, and fingers at his release point contribute to the eventual identity of each individual pitch. However, these factors are all pretty meaningless without a solid, consistent foundation set of mechanics that the pitcher uses for every pitch.

There are exceptions to the “single release point” notion, of course. There are lots of baseball stories about pitchers who had multiple arm-slots that they could use anytime they wanted–I suspect that some of these stories are more mythology than fact.

A survey of Getty Image pictures, taken at release point, of ~380 out of the 420 pitchers on MLB rosters in 2007 showed clear evidence that only about 2 % of them used two distinct arm-slots. There was no evidence for any pitcher in that group using three distinct arm-slots. (The ~40 missing pitchers in this analysis simply didn’t have good pictures of their release point.)

A great pitching coach once told me how to determine a pitcher’s “natural arm-slot”: Take him aside, without fanfare, and tell him you are going to roll ground balls to him. Tell him it is simply fielding practice and do not discuss pitching, arm-slot, or anything else about throwing mechanics. He should field the balls and throw them back to you for five or ten minutes.

After you and your pitcher are relaxed and into a pleasant fielding/throwing/catching rythym start studying his arm-slot. That is most likely to be the kid’s “natural arm-slot”–the one he is using when he is comfortable, having fun throwing the ball, and completely unconscious of the pressures of pitching and pitching coaches.

Hope this helps some, Dsmith–similar kinds of advice seemed to help my boy when he was your son’s age.


#5

The beginnings of understanding ball manipulation…like I mentioned, just ensure the hand is behind the ball…nothin wrong with getting some cut on a two seamer as long as it is due to seam orintation, the thumb is also a factor. I’d just do the same thing with the tape and be sure…and then let it develop. What you describe is sink and cut. Usually I don’t spend much time trying to develop it until the kid is mature and understands what he’s doing…If it happens naturally…Right On brother!! Expect a bunch of poor bat strikes and ground balls 8)


#6

Thanks Guy’s lot’s of great info. The sink I’m talking about is 12 6 He has a 2 seam cutter that runs in on a righty and some times His 4 seam will run down and in on a righty. He has an above average fastball the sinking action on the 4 seam with a 3/4 release point was explosive I almost got one in the Berry’s.My concern is making sure He doesn’t hurt Himself He has a curve ball and a knuckle curve But I don’t promote those pitches.


#7

Well with movement and changing speeds on those fb’s it’s all good…no need for the breaking stuff. Don’t be afraid to teach him, just teach him responsibility to his body and proper pitch mechanics. You have the luxury of moving stuff…a cutter for a righty breaks away like a mini slider and the sinker both moves in and down and in, depending on the action your arm slot and hand/seam positioning. I’ve heard of throwing both two and four seam varieties, my sons cutter is four seam and is just death when it works.


#8

He can move His 2 seamer in and out with the grip but he has a great change up we developed this last Fall and Winter. We are ready for this season He is playing up to Majors this year Our league only has 3 10 year olds playing majors this year. Here is a Gif of Him hitting the bag this winter.


#9

swing looks really good. one of the few young guys to shift his weight off the back foot before he makes contact.


#10

Hack looks great for his age!! My one word of caution would be to make sure he looks this good when you move the bag back in relation to his body to simulate the pitch away. There is a lot of info floating around out there about “rotational” hitting which is mostly marketing garbage. IMO, most of the guys clamoring for rotation are trying to make a buck. It’s my understanding that most organizations don’t have a philosophy centered around weight shift, linear mechs, or rotational mechs. They just know right and wrong ways to do things and they don’t have a need to define what they teach with one or two words. From what I have seen, younger kids who have gone to “rotational” hitting instructors ususally handle the ball in very well and struggle with the pitch away because they are focused on their hips. All that to say, make sure you keep him gap-to-gap. That’s where the doubles are. There’s my two cents on hitting. I know this isn’t a hitting forum, but you got me all amped by posting that sweet hitting vid. He looks like quite the athlete D. Have fun!!

P.S. I never seen a hitting display as sweet as Albert Pujols in the HR Derby a few years back. Missles all over the yard, from gap-to gap.


#11

[quote=“HasBeen08”]Hack looks great for his age!! My one word of caution would be to make sure he looks this good when you move the bag back in relation to his body to simulate the pitch away. There is a lot of info floating around out there about “rotational” hitting which is mostly marketing garbage. IMO, most of the guys clamoring for rotation are trying to make a buck. It’s my understanding that most organizations don’t have a philosophy centered around weight shift, linear mechs, or rotational mechs. They just know right and wrong ways to do things and they don’t have a need to define what they teach with one or two words. From what I have seen, younger kids who have gone to “rotational” hitting instructors ususally handle the ball in very well and struggle with the pitch away because they are focused on their hips. All that to say, make sure you keep him gap-to-gap. That’s where the doubles are. There’s my two cents on hitting. I know this isn’t a hitting forum, but you got me all amped by posting that sweet hitting vid. He looks like quite the athlete D. Have fun!!

P.S. I never seen a hitting display as sweet as Albert Pujols in the HR Derby a few years back. Missles all over the yard, from gap-to gap.[/quote] Thanks Guy’s I don’t know much about the rotational Hitting I have always stressed fundamentals and that the Swing starts from the ground up and that the Hips are the engine.As for where He Hit’s the ball It’s kinda up to the pitcher I’ve always stressed hitting it where the pitcher pitches it out side goes to right down the middle goes to center and inside goes to left.We just had tryouts and He blasted a line drive off the right Center field wall. I’m just happy I’ve been able to pass on My Passion to My Son. :smiley: