So I’m an 15 year old pitcher, 5’7.5 120. I’m not sure if it matters but my wingspan is 6’1. I probably wont grow much past 5’10 is it possible that I have the genetics to throw 90mph? My top speed off a mound is around 77mph.
Genetic potential is a ceiling, most people are not limited by it because they don’t put in the work to find it. Do the work and you will find out but there is no way of knowing before you put in the work.
Train, eat, lift and throw…
The good news: It is entirely possible you’ll eventually be able to throw 90 mph.
The less good news: It will take a hell of a lot of work, and you won’t know the answer for certain until you’ve trained to your full potential, which will probably take years.
Being physically large is helpful. But there are plenty of 5’10" pitchers who can hit 90 mph. If you want to reach your full genetic potential as a pitcher, age 15 is a great time to get serious about it.
Key elements to consider:
WHAT IS YOUR STRENGTH TRAINING PROGRAM? This is critical. You won’t throw high velocities without more strength and power. Fortunately, you are at an age where large gains in velocity can come fairly rapidly as (a) you naturally grow taller and fill out, and (b) your strength and conditioning program adds muscle to your frame. Get on a reputable strength & conditioning program for pitchers, and stick to it religiously.
WHAT IS YOUR DIET AND SLEEP REGIMEN? If you train hard, you’ll almost certainly need to increase your food intake by A LOT, including tons of additional protein and other nutrients to support the more powerful frame you’re building. (A college recruiter advised my son during his junior year to increase his calorie intake to 4600 daily to add 15 lbs. of muscle by his senior year. It worked. You should plan on bigger portions at mealtimes and healthy snacks between meals. A whey protein shake after workouts can also be an affordable, easy way to supplement your protein/caloric intake.) In addition, sleep is where most of your recovery and growth occur. Get as much sleep as you possibly can.
HOW ARE YOUR THROWING MECHANICS? In my years observing and coaching high school-aged players, I’ve seen some impressive physical specimens throw high 70’s and low 80’s with poor mechanics–mostly “arm throwers” with inconsistent deliveries who didn’t understand how to properly incorporate their entire bodies into pitching. These young men were throwing well under their physical potential because of poor mechanics. They were also at higher risk of injury. You want to develop consistent mechanics that use your body’s entire kinetic chain from top to bottom, with smooth “connected” motions that eliminate unnecessary friction/strain on joints and connective tissues.
If your family has the financial resources, I’d recommend finding a reputable pitching coach in your area to oversee your training. If you can’t afford to pay a private coach, however, it’s possible to do most of this development on your own – or preferably with the assistance of a high school coach or dedicated parent. There are many affordable books and free internet resources covering pitcher development.
The last thing I will say is perhaps most important: BE PATIENT.
It’s a journey. A fortunate few of the best trained and most genetically gifted will throw 90 by their junior or senior year of high school. Many more won’t hit that mark until sometime in college. And–unfortunately–a much larger number will never get there. You won’t know where you fall on that spectrum until you put in the work over the next 2-7 years.
Have fun with it along the way. And remember, there’s a lot more to pitching than velocity. Command, secondary pitches, strategy. These are equally important things to develop on the road to becoming a lights-out pitcher.