Finger pressures on 4-seam fastball?


#1

I read in a book that to get movement on a 4-seam fastball you have to put pressure on your index or middle finger. Will this sacrifice speed?


#2

Or you could just throw a 2-seam. Mine moves quite a bit and I just hold it along the seams with no added pressure. You should try it!


#3

One day, while warming up for a game, I suddenly let loose with a pitch that I had no idea was doing anything, but it was quite a bit faster than my other stuff, and not knowing what else to call it I called it my “whoops” pitch. When my catcher noticed it and wanted to know if I would care to try it in the game, I did so, and I discovered that it really got the batters screwed up! Later on I talked to Ed Lopat about it, and he got a stopwatch and timed me, and he let me know that what I had was a good 81MPH four-seam FAST BALL! It had a lot of movement on it, and I found that it didn’t make any difference whether I put pressure on it with my index finger or my middle finger, it just moved, and I was happy to add it to my burgeoning collection of pitches. Lopat told me, “That’s a good pitch. Use it. You can spot it—tease the hitters with it and throw them off balance—use it to set them up for your slider.” And so I did.
So I say, it all depends on how you feel; you can do it either way. Just be sure to stay away from the middle of the plate! :slight_smile:


#4

A great example of someone who put pressure on his fastball during his career is Greg Maddux.

I would say if you do it correctly (get movement - in, out, down) that you will loose some velocity. The exact amount will depend, but by the simple fact that you are trying to get the ball to move, I think it’s fair to say that the velocity will suffer.

Stu


#5

if you want more tailing action use your index finger and for sinking action use your middle and for other movemnet make your fingers off center.