From the Couch to 90

“From the Couch to 90” - My process from giving up baseball to making a comeback

I have decided to create a baseball log in order to document my journey and keep myself motivated. Plus, if my routine can help anyone else that’s a bonus!

I have pitched for my entire childhood up until 17 years old, which is when I decided to call it quits since I received a full ride academic scholarship to a Canadian University; thus I decided to focus on my studies. Also, I knew that baseball wasn’t going to take me anywhere as I was 17 and sitting at 75mph due to a poor arm action that I couldn’t shake. Now marks 2 years that I stopped playing baseball, I am 19 now. I have never been able to get away from my love of baseball and pitching, I have coached pitching over the past two years to 9 and 10 year olds which has inspired me to gear things back up.

Thus, I have decided to put my strong work ethic into becoming a better pitcher than I ever was by breaking down my mechanics and getting into the shape of an ideal pitcher.

Name: Tanner
Year: College Sophmore
Position: LHP

My transition:
Prior to stopping baseball
Age: 17
Height/weight: 6’2", 175-180
Velocity: 75

Age: 19
Height/Weight: 6’4", 195

Goals: To see a reading of 90mph on a radar gun, and to become an effective pitcher and gain credibility for coaching pitching in the future. However, being drafted is my dream.

Please let me know if you have any advice along the way, I know 19 is a little late in this journey but I’m determined and will take all the help I can get!

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it’s never too late to get drafted, but if you can’t reach 90mph by 21 chances will start dropping drastically. So I would set that goal as far as the BIG Idea and if it doesn’t work out, start thinking about other ways to live your dream, weither by pitching in independent leagues or start coaching baseball. Its all opinions on a message board, but if you think you have more time or feel like that much velocity gain is too much in such little time, its because you aren’t ready to give it all you’ve got and your mindset is too weak to compete where you want to play, against kids who’ve been eating baseballs for breakfast for the last 15 years.

Thanks for the response. I’m going to give it everything I have for the remainder of my university degree, hopefully I can see some big results! My drive has never been the issue even when I played from 6-17, it was just a combination of poor mechanics and injuries but now I’m in the best shape of my life and am ready to make a comeback.

Look into the driveline program.

I will, thanks for the advice. Have you or someone you know used it and gotten good results?

6/21/2017 - started the process of getting back into pitching shape by doing some light throwing. Also, I went for a run and completed my rotator cuff routine.

I hope to upload video in the next few days.

Yes my son used a modified version. He has had some elbow issues but is only14. I’d look into driveline and long toss. Make sure to study both. Its not for everyone

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Keep working and don’t give up… my son started using the Driveline program at the end of November 2016 and working his butt off in the weight room… he was sitting 78 - 80 and by middle February 2017 he was sitting 84-86…

Give it all you have and don’t have any regrets. If it does not workout at least you can look back and know you didn’t leave anything on the table.

There is no substitute for hard work… Ben Hogan, the professional golfer, used to say “the harder I work the luckier I get”.

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@CBC thanks! Thats an impressive velocity gain. Exactly, I’ve seen a few of my friends get drafted now and I have regrets taking the “safe” route. Anyways is driveline a program that I can do on my own? What do you get? How expensive is it? Have ypu tried any other programs? I will try to document my process on the log

My son started working with a fella at the end of November last year that follows the Driveline program. However, it is certainly something you can do on your own. “Google” Driveline Baseball and they will forward to you the workouts. The only thing we purchased from them is the “plyocare” weighted balls. I can tell you my son sticks to the program and working in the weight room religiously. He set a goal for himself to be touching 90 his senior year… whether he gets there or not remains to be seen. I have told him in the past that all of the hard work he is putting in will only help. He also adheres to a very strict healthy diet… however, he makes me feel guilty sometimes when we go out to eat… LOL!!!

Looks like your son is on the right track, I will look into driveline

Today, I woke up early and completed a leg workout at the gym

  • leg press (3x8, 290)
  • leg extension (2x8, 160)
  • leg curl (2x8, 160)
  • calf raises (2x8, 30lbs dumbbells)
  • step ups (2x8, 25lbs dumbbells)

Then, I ran 6 sprints of 100 yards each.
Wrapped up my day with a 30 pitch flatground
Velo: 70

For my first bullpen in 2 years and it was a flatground, I was okay with that speed. Its only up from here.

I also took some video so that’ll be posted tomorrow. From just reviewing it a little I’ve noticed some flaws that need correcting asap.

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Good work. Keep us posted. Love of the game can be a great motivator. Im very happy i played until I had nothing left.

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Hey, as promised… here is the video from my flat ground last night. Please, rip it apart! I’m trying to make as much progress as I can.

Below are my thoughts on my mechanics, please let me know if these are indeed flaws or not.
My thoughts:

  1. I need to stay tall through my delivery, why be 6’4’’ if I’m not using it
  2. My cocked position has my arm too high in the air (maybe this is a result of dropping down)
  3. I land on my heal, causing my plant foot to rotate open
  4. Don’t extend my glove arm enough
  5. Need to release the ball farther out front
  6. I think my back foot comes off the ground too early

Thanks. I’ll keep working hard!

I’ve been pushing myself harder and harder to keep waking up earlier and today I woke up and immediately went to the gym where I completed my rotator cuff, core and scap routines. After that, I had to run off to class but once it let out I went back to the gym and completed the following:

  • wrist curl (2x12, 25s)
  • wrist extension (2x12, 10s)
  • lat pulldown (2x10,8. 130lbs)
  • shrugs (2x10,8. 25s)
  • chest press (2x10,8. 130lbs)
  • tricep extension (2x10. 80lbs)
  • bicep curl (2x10. 95lbs)

Finally, I wrapped up my day with another 30 pitch bullpen trying to make some corrections that I diagnosed yesterday.

Question of the Day: how often should a pitcher ice?

Today I began my day with a core workout followed by my return to long toss. I got out to about 200’ and my arm felt really good. My goal over the coming months is to push my limits and break the 300’ marker.

What is a good timeframe for this goal?

Question of the Day: how much harder do pitchers throw during long toss than they do off the mound?

My son went from 225 to 261 in about 2 months. He was recovering from injury so Im not entirely sure what his,maximum initial distance would have been if he had tried to max out right away. We took about a month to build up to 225. He seemed to kind of platau there than moved out from 225 in a very steady fashion. My other son saw nearly the same increase in the same time frame.

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Alright, so about 20’ per month that seems like a good gain. In order to reach that, how often were you doing longtoss? And did they see velocity increases due to the longer max distances since longtoss distance is usually directly correlated with velo?

We threw long toss three times a week along with driveline…so that helped with arm strength. We did not pitch during that time. As I mentioned earlier I estimate he went from max 225 to 261, but don’t know for sure what his true initial max distance was because we spent the initial phase not trying for max distance.

A rule of thumb is for each additional 5 ft you throw your velocity should increase by 1mph.

275= 75mph

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The long toss equates to velocity off the mound is a myth (IMO). Long toss is a great way to stretch out & condition the arm and may be an indicator of potential velocity but seriously doubt you’ll see improvement off the mound in direct correlation with improvement in long toss distance. My son is an excellent example. As a HS Freshman was topping out around 80. Long toss max was around 250-260. Senior year able to max out over 360 feet long toss and only 82 off the mound. Towards the end of HS season he started a program which has finally increased his velocity from the mound. Bullpen gunned within last couple of weeks he sat 84-85 and hit 86 a couple of times. Haven’t been gunning him regularly but suspect he’s hit upper 80’s on some good days. The key has been moving more effeciently; all the long toss gains imaginable would never equate to increasing his velocity from the mound. Pretty sure he has a higher ceiling but has a lot more work to do. He continues to long toss but doesn’t expect velocity increases purely from long toss.

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