Elbow level

Brandon Webb actually sits at about 88-92 throughout a game. Of course his sinker has incredible movement and is the key to his success.

Baseball may be too hung up on velocity sometimes, but it’s also justified with some guys. The guys who throw 85 or so and are successful are few and far between but they all clearly have incredible command and/or movement. Not everyone can be successful with this type of velocity.

[quote=“palo20”]Brandon Webb actually sits at about 88-92 throughout a game. Of course his sinker has incredible movement and is the key to his success.

Baseball may be too hung up on velocity sometimes, but it’s also justified with some guys. The guys who throw 85 or so and are successful are few and far between but they all clearly have incredible command and/or movement. Not everyone can be successful with this type of velocity.[/quote]

The source for my comments about Webb’s velo is from an area supervisor. I’m repeating what I was told. I’ve never seen him pitch live. I agree his sinker is special…and it took him a long time to find it. On the flip side of 85, there are also guys who throw 95 with limited movement and get hammered.

I agree that it’s all about relative velocity. Compared to a 70 MPH knuckleball, an 80 MPH fastball looks like a rocket.

The hard part about evaluating a “finesse” guy is that it takes more work. You have to pay attention to the subtle things rather than just the radar gun. Many people aren’t willing to put in that extra time and do that extra work.

There’s also the question of whether the finesse guy will be successful at the next level, even if he’s killing guys at the HS or college level. There are ways of getting a sense of that, but not everyone is willing to work (or think) that hard.

I would tend to trust these velocity numbers more than public numbers.

Too often the networks or the home team mess with the velocity numbers to make things exciting or to mess with a guy’s head.

I assume the Cardinals were doing this with Zumaya during the WS. I went to game 4 and saw that after every pitch he would stare at the stadium radar gun display. I never saw him touch 97, which doesn’t jibe with what he is said to have done in the past.

[quote=“Coach45”][quote=“joejanish”]
I understand what you are saying. However after watching the video of the iron ball throw, it looks to me like the kid is definitely bending laterally and putting a frightening strain on his lower back. So I’m not sure what to make of any of this.[/quote]

Yes there’s lateral bending, but far less than a conventional pitcher. If you watch how tall he stays right through the end of the motion it provides some clues. And because he continues with body rotation, instead of squaring the chest up to throw, the low back strain is far less than when pitchers also bend at the waist.

After nearly 1000 consecutive days of this he’s never once mentioned discomfort in the lower back.[/quote]

I absolutely disagree with what you are seeing. There is no way that a conventional pitcher (with good mechanics) bends sideways to the extent that the kid with the iron ball did in that particular video.

Please do not bother to argue your side, as we’re obviously seeing two different things and you can’t convince me that the color red looks like blue. I’ll happily agree to disagree.

[quote=“joejanish”]
I absolutely disagree with what you are seeing. There is no way that a conventional pitcher (with good mechanics) bends sideways to the extent that the kid with the iron ball did in that particular video.

Please do not bother to argue your side, as we’re obviously seeing two different things and you can’t convince me that the color red looks like blue. I’ll happily agree to disagree.[/quote]

Joe,

The lateral bending you see in Roger Clemens below, is extreme. He’s bending laterally far enough to take the right shoulder beyond the line of his left leg. In addition his body mass is levered out in front of the hips. If ANYTHING goes wrong while in this position, you seriously damage the lower back. You’re free to disagree. You’re mistaken, and based on your statement Roger Clemens has terrible mechanics.

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]I’m fine with this. That the action isn’t damaging in and of itself, but that it sets you up to possibly do things that are damaging, such as…

  1. Excessive external rotation of the PAS upper arm.
    2. Externally rotating the PAS upper arm while the elbows are above and behind the shoulders.[/quote]Chris. Your #2 is precisely what I’ve challenged you about several times before. This is an example of how stills just CAN’T do the job in a dynamic event. It’s also why I continue to ask “when” about these ideas you’re throwing out there.

  2. I’ve yet to see, in video, external rotation happen with the elbow above the shoulders that is in what we could call an “extreme” range. The elbow is back down to shoulder height BEFORE the forearm is vertical. This is very much within a relatively safe range.

  3. The elbow doesn't stay up there.  It drops during the very, very early ext. rotation.

[quote=“dm59”]Chris. Your #2 is precisely what I’ve challenged you about several times before. This is an example of how stills just CAN’T do the job in a dynamic event. It’s also why I continue to ask “when” about these ideas you’re throwing out there.

  1. I’ve yet to see, in video, external rotation happen with the elbow above the shoulders that is in what we could call an “extreme” range. The elbow is back down to shoulder height BEFORE the forearm is vertical. This is very much within a relatively safe range.

  2. The elbow doesn't stay up there.  It drops during the very, very early ext. rotation.[/quote]
    

DM…I think your statements are dead on. The shoulder stresses at the time Chris describes are very minimal and are happening at relatively slow speeds. The mechanism causing impingement “syndrome” is different than what Chris talks about. Medically, ‘syndrome’ is an interesting word.

[quote=“dm59”]Chris. Your #2 is precisely what I’ve challenged you about several times before. This is an example of how stills just CAN’T do the job in a dynamic event. It’s also why I continue to ask “when” about these ideas you’re throwing out there.

  1. I’ve yet to see, in video, external rotation happen with the elbow above the shoulders that is in what we could call an “extreme” range. The elbow is back down to shoulder height BEFORE the forearm is vertical. This is very much within a relatively safe range.

  2. The elbow doesn't stay up there.  It drops during the very, very early ext. rotation.[/quote]
    

DM,

This is the third or fourth time I posted this as a rebuttal to this objection.

…in which he clearly starts to rotate his shoulders while his PAS elbow is above and behind the level of his shoulders.

Chris,

I don’t think you understand how to visualize some of the angles and level lines involved. Do you have any understanding of how camera lenses distort images and perspective? Can you look at an artist’s rendering and tell if it was drawn from real life or based on a photograph? Reyes’ arm is doing precisely what DM described earlier: elbow dropping as upper arm outward rotation begins. This action is not harmful, particularly at the relatively low speeds involved.

The real issues that make Reyes a prime candidate for shoulder injury are the ones set in motion by pointing the forearm downward and hooked backward with the upper arm and elbow behind the acromial line at this point in the motion. It maximizes the distance his forearm will bounce. That distance is the critical issue.

Coach45

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]DM,

This is the third or fourth time I posted this as a rebuttal to this objection.

…in which he clearly starts to rotate his shoulders while his PAS elbow is above and behind the level of his shoulders.[/quote]Chris. Please read my posts more carefully. You have NOT responded to my comments. Coach45 has understood what I’ve been saying (thank you coach) but you are refusing to respond to the specifics of my posts. Yes, he STARTS but, one more time,

the elbow has dropped to shoulder height BEFORE the forearm is vertical and, therefore, is well within a very easy range of external rotation.

This is what I’ve been saying and what you’ve not addressed, for “the third or fourth time”. The elbow drops back down Chris. Until then, the external rotation is very benign. That’s my point and the one you have yet to address specifically.

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]This is the third or fourth time I posted this as a rebuttal to this objection.

…in which he clearly starts to rotate his shoulders while his PAS elbow is above and behind the level of his shoulders.[/quote]

I think I’ve done this before but what I see in that image sequence is this…

Reyes’ front foot doesn’t plant until frame 39. The only hip rotation that happens up to that point is that which is necessary to open up the front foot and point it at the target. The main hip rotation doesn’t happen until after the front foot plants and the front leg braces. This appears to happen at frame 40. Since I believe Reyes does rotate his hips before his shoulders, this means Reyes’ main shoulder rotation doesn’t happen until after frame 40. However, by frame 40, his throwing elbow has dropped below his shoulder which is, I believe, what DM was pointing out.

I think part of what may appear to you as his shoulder rotation starting earlier is simply a loading of the front-side scap. His glove arm shows up behind his head in frame 39, is hidden by his throwing arm in frame 40, and then reappears in frame 41. If he was starting his shoulder rotation as early as you say, I think his glove arm would become visible earlier. It appears to me that Reyes’ back shoulder is still aligned with 2B in frame 40 and doesn’t start a forceful rotation until frame 41.

So, I guess I see things as happening differently than you.

Anybody read or seen Much ado about nothing? :lol:

[quote=“dm59”][quote=“Chris O’Leary”]DM,

This is the third or fourth time I posted this as a rebuttal to this objection.

…in which he clearly starts to rotate his shoulders while his PAS elbow is above and behind the level of his shoulders.[/quote]Chris. Please read my posts more carefully. You have NOT responded to my comments. Coach45 has understood what I’ve been saying (thank you coach) but you are refusing to respond to the specifics of my posts. Yes, he STARTS but, one more time,

the elbow has dropped to shoulder height BEFORE the forearm is vertical and, therefore, is well within a very easy range of external rotation.

This is what I’ve been saying and what you’ve not addressed, for “the third or fourth time”. The elbow drops back down Chris. Until then, the external rotation is very benign. That’s my point and the one you have yet to address specifically.[/quote]

You can tell by looks at the bird on his chest that his shoulders start to turn between frames 39 and 40. At this point his PAS elbow is still quite high, certainly higher than Greg Maddux’s at the same moment. Also ala Kerry Wood, Reyes clearly starts to rotate his shoulders befoe his PAS forearm is vertical.

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]You can tell by looks at the bird on his chest that his shoulders start to turn between frames 39 and 40. At this point his PAS elbow is still quite high, certainly higher than Greg Maddux’s at the same moment. Also ala Kerry Wood, Reyes clearly starts to rotate his shoulders befoe his PAS forearm is vertical.[/quote]Yes, you are correct about the shoulders starting to rotate a bit early. This is not uncommon. Now, look at the elbow height between frames 39 and 41 and note where the external rotation happens. If zero degrees is forearm horizontal, it goes from -5 or -10 in frame 39, to 90 degrees (straight up) in frame 41. Are you saying that external rotation in this range is dangerous?

I think this is a subtle, but non-trivial difference. You see the same thing in Kerry Wood, Chris Carpenter, and other pitchers with shoulder problems.

I think so.

In terms of Reyes (and Kerry Wood) they have 180+ degrees of external rotation whereas a pitcher who came to the traditional high cocked position would only have 90 degrees of external rotation.

Based on the patterns I’ve seen, that seems to be a significant difference.

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]… they have 180+ degrees of external rotation whereas a pitcher who came to the traditional high cocked position would only have 90 degrees of external rotation.[/quote]This would only be the case if one were to stop at high cocked and begin again from there. Is that what you are recommending?

Both inverted W or horizontal W methods have no stop at high cocked but they continue through. Therefore, they have the same total amount of external rotation. Now, the timing of starting it varies but the amount is the same, roughly. The inverted W’s wait longer. The speed at which they move through the 270 degrees (or a bit less) may be higher in the inverted method but I’m not even sure about that. It would be faster in the forearm pointed down (-90 deg.) up to the forearm pointed up (90 deg.) range but is probably the same from 90 to 180 deg. I have no proof of that though.

Regardless, -90 to +90 is easy stuff. I have a hard time believing that this is dangerous. Now +90 to +180 deg. is the stressful range.

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]Based on the patterns I’ve seen, that seems to be a significant difference.[/quote]I believe this to be pure conjecture.