Frame/motion pictures of a lefty


#1

Hello,

Can someone post a link or url of a lefty pitcher who gives a good example on how to use your legs.

thank you.


#2

Here are 3 pretty good ones.

Billy Wagner

http://www.letstalkpitching.com/images/billy_wagner_open_side.mov

Scott Kazmir

Randy Johnson


#3

Thanks!


#4

It looks like in the Johnson video that Randy kind of “floats forward” with his glove instead of breaking he kind of carries the glove/ball with him as he is transferring his weight.


#5

By do way with this footage i gonna own my coach from the Netherlands.
With his bullshit.


#6

That clip is a great example of getting the hips going early. You can’t see his feet in the clip but it looks like he starts his hips forward shortly after his front foot lifts off the ground and well before the apex of the knee lift. Definitely no “balance point” there.

As for the breaking of the hands, I think the timing of that is more closely tied to the timing of the knee lift - not the timing of the first forward motion of the hips.


#7

I’ve never thought Johnson was a very good example for most pitchers. He’s made adjustments that allow him to be effective with all that height, but in the end it is all the leverage that gives him velocity and not his mechanics. He may be good for tall pitchers to study but not for the average (6’2"?) pitcher.


#8

I disagree.

One thing that you can see very clearly in the Johnson clip is how he rotates his hips ahead of his shoulders and then lets them pull his shoulders around.


#9

CADad,

Can you offer some examples of specific aspects of his mechanics that you take issue with? I’m not disagreeing - just curious as to what you see. Thanks.


#10

If you compare him with Kazmir and Wagner you should see that he really doesn’t have the same type of leg drive or the same type of effort when throwing. He doesn’t need to given the leverage he has and the fact that with those long arms and legs he’d be more prone to losing command as he increased effort with most likely very little to gain in velocity or effectiveness.

The shorter pitchers have to have better momentum transfer and put more effort into their throwing to get the velocity up where it is more effective. They can put more effort into the throwing without losing command because with shorter levers they’ve got more room for error than Johnson does. Every pitcher has a tradeoff between velocity and command. The trade is different for somebody who is as tall as Johnson is. They are very prone to having control problems with all that height but velocity tends to come relatively easily so they tend to have motions designed for control and not velocity.

I’m not taking issue with Johnson’s mechanics, they are quite obviously very good mechanics for him. However, the same mechanics wouldn’t be as likely to be effective for shorter pitchers.

For example one would think that Johnson would be his most effective throwing over the top and having an incredible downward angle on his pitches but my guess is that he found he couldn’t control the ball well enough with that style and that going nearly sidearm allowed for more control and added the intimidation factor vs lefties. Of course righties tended to be intimidated by him also as a friend who has hit against him made quite clear while telling me he wasn’t intimidated.


#11

Ok, gotcha’. Thanks.


#12

I disagree. My son used to work out at a local baseball “factory” that runs a lot of kids through. I’ve seen a ton of highschoolers 6’5" to 6’10" pass through there, and the majority of the big guys throw low 80’s - or they can’t find the plate with both hands and a GPS unit. It’s not just leverage that gets the Big Unit his speed, it’s the proper mechanical leverage and use thereof. With all of the things that can go wrong with that much human bone and sinew moving at the same time, I think Johnson is a very good example of mechanics. He throws hard without over-throwing. And he throws strikes.


#13

hoseman,
You say you disagree then you in effect repeat my arguments. Those were good examples you posted. It isn’t at all unusual for a very tall HS age kid with tons of leverage to either not be able to throw hard or not be able to find the plate. It takes time to learn how to use those long limbs and in general that type of pitcher will be most effective with a simpler motion that emphasizes control much like Johnson’s. That’s one of the reasons scouts tend to be interested in tall HS age pitchers even if they are only throwing in the low or mid 80s. One of our local D3 players was much like that at 6’8". He made a fairly successful MLB debut last season and is more of a control pitcher throwing mostly in the low 90s although he’s shown the ability to hit the high 90s.

My point is that while Johnson’s mechanics are a good example for most pitchers who are quite tall they aren’t a good example for most pitchers who are significantly shorter than Johnson and most pitchers are significantly shorter than Johnson.


#14

I’ll buy that. And the reverse is true also…the mechanics of a very short pitcher may not be the best example for a really tall pitcher to emulate. This doesn’t make Johnson’s mechanics wrong or bad, of course.

One thing I don’t like about “experts” in any endeavor is the need to be right or to prove your nemesis wrong, regardless of the argument. In my mind there are a lot of “right ways” to throw the ball. Each kid has a different style, and while gross mechanics can be taught, the small stuff that we seem to argue about is in many cases something that a given kid can make work.

In other words, there is no one right way. There are many. The good coach can recognize each kids strengths and weaknesses and coach to encourage and improve them.