Change up location?


#1

What is the best change up location?

My son is playing in the minors LL composed of 9,10, and 11’s. As a 9 yr old he is our best pitcher. As the season goes on he is getting more accurate but less K’s.

He is getting very few swing threws, lots of foul balls and very few batters swinging out of the strike zone.

Last night he allowed 5 hits in 4 innings. Two were hit well and three were dinkers that found a hole in the defense. Four errors behind him and no walks for 2 runs and a runner on 1st and 3rd when he left the game. It was the last inning and we were up 4 to 3 with 2 outs. We ended up losing 5 to 4. Of the 12 outs pitched 9 were K’s.

Of the 13 balls that were put in play, 9 were with 2 strikes and the batter didn’t seem to have a chance, but some how made contact.

Any ideas startegy to get that third strike. He throws a good 4S (45+), 2S, and change.


#2

you are trying to look for more K’s…even though he had 9 out of 12 outs. come on now :lol: you can’t strike EVERYONE out…lol


#3

I agree he is doing well but his pitch counts get to high to quick. SO many times he is up 0-2 or 1-2 and the third strike takes 3 or more pitches burning through his pitch count.

It also effects our defense. When 2 of 3 batters are K’s the defense starts to rely on it. Especially when it’s taking 5 or 6 pitches per batter to produce a hit or contact or K.


#4

To first answer your question low in the zone or below the zone is the best location for a CU. Anything up is just a bad fastball and will likely get hit hard. High changeups tend to make bad hitters look good.

Going one step further low and away will magnify the effects of the CU. Not only is it slower in velocity it must travel further in order for the hitter to make contact thus increasing the chances of a miss or mis-hit.

Finally high strikeout rates and low pitch counts don’t generally go together. Low pitch counts tend to result from more balls in play early in counts. This can put pressure on your defense but can also keep them in the game mentally. If they’re making errors pitch counts are going to climb no matter what happens. To me your situation sounds pretty normal for the age group.


#5

Those opposing batters are doing what a lot of major leaguers do nowadays. They’re either taking all the way, or they’re fouling off a lot of pitches; either way, they’re looking to get on base. Either they’re hoping for a walk, or they’re looking for something they can hit—if not out of the ballpark and into Aunt Minnie’s kitchen window, then certainly over the fence. It’s what they do. So what can be done about this situation?
My pitching coach of way back when had a philosophy of pitching—get the ball over the plate and make them hit it. Make them go after YOUR pitch, what you want them to hit. This is one of the key elements of strategic pitching. He almost never threw strikes; he would throw pitches that looked like strikes, and very often the batter would chase after them and miss, and the result was—yes, strikeouts.
Now, no one expects a kid that age to strike out a lot of hitters—but you can be sure he doesn’t want to give up a lot of hits, which is what he has been doing. I would suggest that if he has a natural sinker, which is what his two-seamer seems to be, he should use it a lot more often and forget about the changeup, at least for now. He wants to get the batters out, and he should do it by going with his best pitch—that sinking fast ball. 8)