Collapsing Back Leg

Ok, I could use a little help. I’m a D-1 pitcher with professional aspirations. I threw about a week ago and did very well number’s wise, hits, strikeouts, got the win, etc. A scout at the game told me he had me at 88-89, which isn’t bad, but I know I’ve got more in me. He told me that I’d be better served if I was able to stay taller on my back leg and throw the ball down hill a little more, that I could tap into my leverage (I’m 6’5) and squeeze out a few more mph’s. He said that I’m 6’5 but throw the ball like i’m 6’0. I typically take about a 6 foot stride. Now that I’ve tried staying taller i’m taking about a 5.5 foot stride. It feels like I’m not building nearly as much momentum, and I feel like I’m cutting myself off and not getting as much extension. Does anyone have any suggestions to combat collapsing the back leg while still building momentum? Sorry, I don’t have any recent film, I’m sure that would help. Thanks.

go further faster while maintaining your posture and balance.

That scout just said nothing helpful…
(Telling someone to stay taller does not help the person realize physically how to pitch)

practice practice practice

You need to practice every day and if you throw 90+ with good control and offspeed, and you understand HOW to pitch, then you’re fine barring any injury (which you should be conditioning for).

Here’s an opinion of someone who’s been studying House’s philosophy, Mills’, and Setpro…

The scout as many do, was concentrating on the downward plane of the pitch he’d like to see on a very tall guy. There’s a big difference between downward plane and a straighter pitch vs. developing velocity.

Mechanically, I see no way that velocity can be elevated by reducing a stride length, UNLESS somehow there is more seperation and torque created between the hips and torso. Additionally, there has to be less momentum developed towards home plate and I would think less explosion and less velocity.

The only thing I can think the scout was seeing with respect to velocity improvement was he may be thinking you rush yourself a little and get the top half out front too much and maybe pull your arm through the zone vs. using your entire body to whip it through the windmill.

But that’s just a guess.

I’d suggest you continue studying the pictures of the top pro’s on this site. They have a tendency of getting some momentum and a slight tilt in their shoulders after knee lift to keep their top half from getting too far ahead.

good luck and keep working

Good comments from Spencer and Joe!

Roger, You’ve trained me well.

At least I think I’m beginning to understand a little bit about what I’m reading on here and these other places.

It makes sense when you guys explain it at least.

Here’s how it works:

some person comes up to you and tells you to do something that’s a break in the norm … and you have a coaching staff …D1 at that, that get’s wind of this “suggestion(s)”, don’t be surpirsed if they (coaches) ask you this … “WHAT DID THIS CLOWN LOOK LIKE KID!!!”

I’ve had experiences over the years with people like this … scouts, semi-scouts, so-called scouts, corn dogs(agents), and all kinds of want-a-be’s.

You listen to your coach(s), you take the time to develop with their resources, their trainers, their baseball office,… and @#%! these people that are trying to impress you with what they know … or what they want to see. These so called experts are nothing but trouble to propects like yourself, and athey’ll get you … excuse the word… THINKING.

Pitchers at your level DON’T THINK … they train, they perform set to a script as set forth by their coaching staff. Besides, if you had the whatforever to need changing ANYTHING your coaching staff at your insitution would have told you so. In fact, when you made that team, one of the reasons for that was due to what these coaches saw … you in a package, just the way you were. Also, these coaches have a timetable for you … whether you know it or not, to progres in their program… NOT SOMEBODY elses… pro or not.

You’ve developed a grove for yourself, a style, a pattern that keeps you healthy and injury free (right?), so put your trust and loyalty were it belongs … in yourself and your coaching staff.

Coach B.

Coach B had a great perspective. Why in the world would you change what you are doing based on one scouts advice who may or may not have credentials to understand your mechanics?

And frankly during the season I wouldnt’ think it’s wise to even be thinking about mechanics unless it’s a tiny adjustment like stepping off the line with the stride leg or whatever.

I think I’ve become more aware of people who throw out the old pitching phrases like stay back, etc. etc…without maybe evaluating what it can do to the overall fluidness of the mechanics.