I think by traditional standards some people might think my pregame routine (for games I pitch) could be harmful to my arm. I get warmed up with some stretching, a few light sprints, then just a little bit of catch. Nothing out of the norm. Then I stray away from the norm in my opinion and throw a weighted ball (8 oz) starting close and stretching to 90 feet. Then I get a softball and throw that at a relatively short distance. Then I move on to longtoss with a regulation size ball. I try to time all this to lead up right before game time, and if I have to wait til the bottom of the inning I usually just toss the weighted ball a very little bit.
You might be wondering why I do these “non-traditional” things…at least I don’t think they are practiced regularly by pitchers, and certainly not on gameday.
I find when I use the weighted ball on the day of, I feel the instant benefit of making the regulation ball appear lighter. I really feel it allows me to throw with a relaxed motion. I am not eager to “amp up” my delivery for added velocity.
With the softball it really makes me feel like I can get my rather small hand on the baseball. I really feel like I can grip the baseball.
Longtoss helps me feel like the pitching distance of 60 feet is the same as if I were to go throw from little league distance.
In all I think it really helps me feel in control of the baseball. It feels light in my hand, small so I can grip it well with my fingers, and as if the mound was closer to the plate and I can play a nice game of catch with the catcher while being in complete control of the baseball.
I’ve never experienced elbow or shoulder problems, be it from this or anything else. The most that ever happens is deadarm typically middle-late in the season, but I honestly attribute this to not being able to throw for much of the winter months due to snow on the ground.
Just wondering what some of you guys think?