how do you throw a curve like roy oswalt throws it…to where it rises and then drops dramatically…


I think what you are describing is a throwing a change up off your curveball. Andy Messersmith and Steve Stone both could do this. John “Blue Moon” Odom had a good one too, called it a slop curve. Luis Tiant used this as a hestitation pitch (he stoped his motion at the top of his delivery, and set his foot down WAY before his arm came through).

You actually have to release the pitch very early so it is on an upward trajectory, but your arm must traveling at a very high rate of speed in order to get the pitch to bite, you need a TON of overspin. Most guys did not throw this pitch for strikes.

Frankly, If you are not in collage baseball you have no prayer of pulling this pitch off successfully, but you might hurt your arm or throw your real curveball off trying to master it. Throwing this pitch is PHD work as a breaking ball pitcher, Ian.


would u happen to have a video of what this pitch looks like ian?


Alas, No -I would be happy to share it if I did. I really can’t recall Oswalt using this pitch and I watched him recently. Bronson Arroyo uses it a little bit.

When I played too many years ago, I threw it in collage. I will try a little more description:

When I through a change up off my curve, I mentally had a picture in my mind of the arch in St. Louis-especially the decendin part of it. That is how I wanted the pitch to look. So for me the begining of the pull (or some guys call it the karate chop) was at the very top of my release or very early. Then I wickedly cut my hand away from the ball. What resulted was a slow moving but rapidly spinning gyroscope of a pitch that dropped alot sharper than batters anticipated.

At this time, I had fully developed Fastball, Curve, Slider, & Palmball. I also because of a tennis backround knew how to keep the pitches seperate from each other. Steve has an excelent article on his blog about the number of ptiches you really need. Let me say it one more time, This pitch is hard on your shoulder. Because my fastball was very ordinary velocity wise, I was a junker, and so fooled batters with a lot of breaking pitches. Because my hands are tiny, some of the other pitches like a forkball were not an option. At the end of the day to remain a pitcher, you must be able to get them out. When I played your fastball was your fastball. There wasn’t much information on how to make it go faster. However, Coaches are concerned about winning-always have been always will be, and I like everyone else wanted my starts.

So this is how I learned it, a lot of trial and error and going to the ball park, and watching the guys who could really do it (Andy Messersmith).

Once again, I would not recommend throwing this before collage ball-Long after your have deveopled Fastball, Change up, Curve, and Slider.