Felix Hernandez -- whoah, that's really going 98 mph?!?!?

I remember the first time seeing “King Felix” and his mastery on the mound. The man (or boy, whichever your prefer to call him) appears to only throw so hard, yet his fastball has been recorded at up to 100 mph. How is it that Hernandez does this, whereas Francisco Rodriguez looks like his bones may disassemble after a pitch.


Here is Felix in his drive toward home plate. Is he prone to injury because of his shoulders’ positioning here? Why or why shouldn’t this be used more among all pitchers? And if it isn’t a bad thing, why don’t all pitchers do this? I’ve found Hernandez to be a remarkable pitcher who dominates the mound (even with the record he had this year, and mind you, he’s like 21 or 22). Why does he seem independent from all other right-handers in the game?

I could tell you maybe if he is more prone if you get a Picture at foot plant. By using Chris O leary theroy on arm actions I might be able to tell you if he is in a good position not to get hurt.

Is his elbow is below his shoulder at landing that’s great but if his elbow is above his shoulder I think it might lead to shoulder problems.

So Get that pic at landing.

I will post that picture later, as I have closed my program for selecting frames. I am wondering about his shoulder level, more than anything. Any quarterback will tell you that you have to elevate the front shoulder upon throwing, but many pitchers stay leveled off. I want to know if this is use of power generation is harmful to the arm or body at any point. I’ve seen nothing to prove one way or the other. Again, I’ll get that pic probably later tonight.

No one can prove it’s good but for balance it’s bad but Idk if it could lead to injury because it’s about the arm at foot plant. If he gets in good position then he might be fine.

My problem is the straight leg while planting and the falling off the mound which both will cause the bulk of the energy to be placed on the elbow and back shoulder to stop the arm in the right way.

I’ve actually been wondering this too…A couple of big leaguers who also do this in my browsing around some clips are clemens, mussina, and rivera, who also happen to be three great and very successful pitchers as well as “king” felix will be in the future…So i’m sure there has to be something to it…But i’ll let the experts tackle this.

I’ve been thinking about pitchers who fall off the mound, and in this case, Felix Hernandez. It seems to me, that to get the hand over the ball and still throw 3/4, your upper half has to lean toward the left. This brings the thrower to the first base side naturally (righty), and creates the a natural follow-through for the three-quarters pitcher. I think for these pitchers, falling off of the mound makes that stress you’re talking about to a neutral and balanced state. Whereas someone like Mark Prior, who fell of the mound considerably, but covered his tracks by jumping toward home, is affected more. Prior threw overhand and because he was falling off the mound, it showed poor mechanics which may have lead to his injuries. After looking at many 3/4 pitchers, there seems to be a commonplace in falling off, which physically makes more sense. My hypothesis is that 3/4 pitchers should be falling off the mound to follow through in a neutral position, and thus vouching for pitchers who fall off to get the hand over the ball upon release and still stay closed through their delivery.

Does that make sense? I may be going in the wrong direction with this, but there seems to be no knowns in pitching, and I myself am wanting to learn more about it.

I’m naturally a position player, and am at a small private high school where I am expected to pitch. To me, pitching is fun, but I want to find good mechanics (nothing is set in stone) to fill for this spring. I definitely throw 3/4, there’s no going around that.

It has been reported that Felix threw 94 as a 14 year old. As I look for new mechanics and also keys for safety in accordance to injury, I want to make sure I model myself into a refined pitcher (while I intend to play college baseball and possibly bring pitching to the table). No pitcher is as impressive to me as Hernandez (and I’m an A’s fan). What can you tell me about Hernandez and what I can do as a high schooler to improve my game to a higher level?[/i]

The falling off the mound is caused by the stiff front leg when he lands. So a over hand and a 3/4 pitcher if done correct can plant and Not fall off as long as they rotate and drive the back hip around a braced flexed plant leg ok. It takes a little work to get compact hip rotation around the front leg.


Here you can see his foot plant better. He isn’t landing with a stiff leg at all, kinda like Johan Sa…you know. :slight_smile:

Ok well i can’t see if his elbow is below shoulder at foot plabt. But I do see that he lands flexed then he stiffens it which will put the bulk of the strain on the arm.

Well, you can see that his elbow is below the shoulder on plant, so going by mr. O’Leary’s theory, he should be safe. I like Felix’s mechanics, but in my oppinion I think hes still going to get injured because he has some incredibly stressful stuff. 95-98 MPH fastball puts enough strain on your shoulder as it is, but what I worry about is his 83-86 mph curve. That is so incredibly stressful on your elbow, to be moving at 86 mph and then just slam on the brakes instantly, Its the arm speed of a fastball combined with the hard supination of a curve, niether of which is good. In my oppinion he will always have elbow problems(which have been recurrent with him his entire career). I’d like to hope not, because he is absolutely fun to watch, so young yet so good.

[quote=“FSTBLLTHRWER”]…so going by mr. O’Leary’s theory, he should be safe.[/quote]…and not very many people out there subscribe to his theory. I don’t.

[quote=“FSTBLLTHRWER”]…95-98 MPH fastball puts enough strain on your shoulder as it is, …[/quote]100% with you there. IMHO, this is HUGE in injury risk. We’re doing nasty things to the tissues involved here and as you throw faster , the nasty increases along with it. Again, just my opinion.

DM why don’t you think chris o leary is right he has predicted injury’s of mlb pitchers before they happen and has proven that more pitchers that use the IW get injured compared to the power position.

Why don’t you like his view?

I’m also not sold on O’Leary’s theories. For every pitcher that he’s “predicted” will get hurt, there are others who bring their elbows above their shoulders who have been very successful and durable. There are also many guys that have good “O’Leary” mechanics who have gotten hurt.

A few guys that are elbows above the shoulder guys include Santana, Peavy, and Willis. All three of these guys have been relatively durable and very successful even though Willis had some problems this year and his velocity was down a bit. Just examples of 3 guys for which O’Leary predicts injuries, but they’re all still young so we’ll see.

Jake Peavy has been bothered by elbow problems last 2 years also. And D willis MPH has dropped and johan santana only does elbow above shoulder once and awile on change-up.

Whatever elbow problems Peavy has had still have not prevented him from throwing over 200 innings the past 3 years–that’s durable…oh yeah, he also won the NL Pitching Triple Crown this year.

I admitted that Willis struggled this year but he was also able to throw over 200 innings for the 3rd straight year. I think some of his velocity problems were more tempo based that anything in the shoulder.

Johan does not change his throwing motion for his change up, it’s the same for all of his pitches.

not true about johan he does tend to lift the arm up for the change-up in the power position. I’ve also have heard he tips his change-up but it still so good they can’t hit it LOL.

But I think chris has a point about shoulder being like that look at people like.

Mark Prior and kerry Wood and other people with the IW that do not last very long like chris carpenter.

Chris Predicted chris carpenters injury and proved that he was right in my eyes. Then you take fransico liriano and he does it too and he got hurt when everything was fine. Also liriano didn’t throw to many pitches that season.

Liriano is a very young pitcher in the big leagues, so that has something to do with his being injured. Carpenter has a history or injuries so he’s more likely to be injured as well.

A few injuries do not prove a theory correct.

It doesn’t matter how young you are. There are plenty of younge college pitchers throwing more innings then he did and not getting hurt. Liriano does the Iw and that is main reason he will never be able to have a long career in the mlb.

It does matter how old a pitcher is in the big leagues. Throwing a lot of innings at a younger age at that level is more taxing than typical high school or college innings.

Also, O’Leary’s theory says that guys who hyperabduct will have impingement problems in their shoulder and Carpenter and Liriano have both had elbow problems.

Now I’m not saying that O’Leary is way off base in his theories, but I think we all need a lot more proof before we start calling them gospel.

the shoulder effects the elbow if there is more stress on shoulder then it applys more stress on the elbow. The whole body is linked together.