Does throwing sliders, etc hurt young players arms?


#1

i am 13 and just wondering others oppinions.


#2

Everyone seems to have different opinions on this subject. Many believe that a kid has no business messing with breaking pitches of any kind until at least 15 or 16, and some not even that. Others—and I’m one of them—feel that young pitchers are all different, and it has to do with the growth processes in the arm and shoulder—some might be ready to work with a curve ball at your age, while others would be well advised to wait a year or two.
I was eleven when I discovered that I had a natural sidearm delivery, and what came attached to it (don’t ask me how or why, it was just there) was a pretty nice little curve ball! I figured, gee whiz, I’ve got a curve ball, let me work with it and see what I can do with it. So I did—I threw it with a sharp karate-chop wrist snap which gave it a terrific break—and I acquired a couple of changeups like the palm ball, also a good knuckle-curve. I found that the sidearm delivery, being the most natural of all the pitching deliveries known to human beings, did away with practically all the strains and stresses arms are often heir to, and that left me free to experiment.
The slider—well, that is one pitch one is generally advised to wait until the age of 16, because that is when the aforementioned growth processes are more or less complete, BUT a young pitcher who is having a lot of trouble with the curve will find the slider more comfortable and easier to work with, because the wrist action is easier. When I learned that pitch at 16, my coach—an active major-league pitcher who was a key member of the Yankees’ Big Three pitching rotation—told me simply, “Throw it like a curve, but roll your wrist, don’t snap it.” For me that meant simply easing up on the wrist action I used for the curve ball! Also, the grip, which I found a lot of fun to work with, was off-center, with the index and middle fingers very close together and the middle finger just touching one seam. And the slider became my strikeout pitch.
Also, being a sidearmer, I discovered the crossfire at about 14, and I fell so in love with it that I wound up using it about 95% of the time—a fact that was not lost on my coach; one day he was helping me with my circle change, and he said to me, “I know you’re going to crossfire it. You use that move with everything you throw.” That move—which works only with the sidearm delivery—gave me twice as many pitches as I’d had before.
Oh yes—I was a real snake-jazzer, not having a fast ball to steak of—I knew I would never be a fireballer on the order of Feller, Raschi, Gibson or Verlander (to name four), so I went in the other direction and became a very good finesse pitcher. Anyhoo, in my considered opinion some young pitchers can easily start developing a breaking pitch or two at your age or fourteen, while others should wait another year or two. It all depends on readiness. So think about where you’re at and whether you feel you can startlearning to throw a curve ball. And look for a really good pitching coach, preferably one with professional experience. Good luck. :slight_smile: 8) :baseballpitcher:


#3

i have been throwing a slurve this season and sometimes a 12/6 curve and have had alot of success plus finding that i have an amazing arm as u said a “fireballer” like verlander i have had much success this season


#4

Keep throwing that fastball! If you don’t throw 90, it won’t matter how good your slider or other breaking ball is because you’ll never get a shot at pro ball. Gotta throw it 70% of the time to compliment a changeup. THEN work on your breaking stuff.


#5

i throw 4seam/2seam mostly then cutter then circle then use my breaking balls as strikeout pitches mostly the slurve bc it is much better than my curve


#6

SOMEBODY PUT OUT AN APB ON THAT FAST BALL!!! :lol:
Seriously, RoyB—I’ll call you that for short—you really need to get that fast ball up to speed and be able to get it in or near the strike zone. With that it mind, let me tell you about a variation of something I used to do when I was a little snip.
This is a drill that focuses on sharpening one’s control. I did this with all my pitches, and here’s how you can use it to get that fast ball in hand, no pun intended. You get a catcher, and you get up on the mound and have him set up behind the plate, and what he’ll do is position his mitt in various places—high, low, inside, outside. And you aim for the pocket of that mitt. Just the fast ball, no other pitches. And you might want to have someone stand in the batter’s box, on either side of the plate, so you’ll have a strike zone to sero in on. It’ll take time, but eventually you will get it to go where you want it—as old Satchel Paige once said, “as far away from the bat and as close to the plate as possible”. 8)


#7

I dunno, but I never snap my wrist on my curveball and my curve is pretty dirty?


#8

i throw an average of 64 mph highest is 69 mph


#9

I totally agree with Steven, keep throwing the fastball. Work on increasing the speed 5-7 mph every year and locating it with good consistency. Out of every 100 pitches you might throw 10 curveballs and 20 changeups. Then there is always the possibility that your growth plates have not fused yet and the torque can seperate those, wait till your body matures and then start to use it when you are 15 or older.

Good luck…and nothing wrong with your speed today, it will increase.