Genetics

Does anybody here think that maybe alot of pitching velocity comes from genetics? If the ability to create and store muscle, plus hand-eye coordination, and stuff like that start off as genetics, the ability to gain pitching velocity should too. I see alot of “Oh this is why your not throwing hard for your age.” and they point out one little thing that couldnt be changing it that much. I think its that its not in their genetic code to have the coordination and muscle memory/mass to throw that hard. Sure, this is a very small amount of play coming from genetics. If you took two pitchers and fed them and trained them the same exact way all of their life (with their natural arm slot, howevers most comfortable for them) I bet their would be a 2-3 MPH difference.
Opinions?

Yeah, genetics can play a role on how well you pitch naturally. Some guys were just born built to throw a baseball while others weren’t as gifted and had to work harder to achieve better control or velocity. Some guys naturally throw the ball with more movement than others. So, basically, yeah genetics does play a role but if you don’t do anything to improve your own gifts and refine them then, it doesn’t what your genetics are, you wont be too good of a pitcher.

Ezacly. Well put man!

genetics determines how hard you can throw. you can add maybe 2 or 3 by training and improving your leverage through mechanics, but velocity is a genetic gift im my opinion. but that is not enough to pitch effectively. you must then work extremely hard to condition yourself to throw every 5th day and pitch deep into games safely.

also most guys must work their butt off to throw strikes.

and that is the difference between a pitcher that makes it and a thrower who gets released. ask the legions of minor league pitchers who throw90+ and can’t stay healthy, throw strikes, or make the ball move. they don’t make it.

that’s it. but if you don’t have the nice loose shoulder that equates to velocity, you can’t throw hard.

and like casey stengel said “a mule never won the kentucky derby, and you can look it up”.

According to the NPA, every pitcher has a genetic maximum velocity that they can throw. That may sound discouraging but consider this - the NPA has also concluded based on their studies of pitchers that most pitchers don’t reach their genetic maximum velocity due to defficiencies in mechanics and strength and flexibility. So, the good news is that most pitchers still have room for improvement.

Work hard and don’t stop trying!

i also sincerely believe with hard work, the vast majority of pitchers have the genetic capacity to throw in the mid 80s - which is hard enough to get most people in amateur ball out.

Some people can gain muscle more easily than others or are naturally stronger. Things like hand eye coordination I think have more to do with childhood development.

We had a kid on our football team this year that was an absolute monster. Had never played the game before but was a natural. Finished the season with about 10 interceptions, taking 3 or 4 back for TD’s. I later found out that he had a twin brother (identical), but he didnt play any sports. It was strange to see how uncoordinated the twin brother was, considering that their genetics are exactly the same.

Nature is obviously important, but the early years play an important role in determining just how good you’ll be.

I think genetics plays a factor, but how big of a factor I’m unsure.

Afterall if you look at families like the Drew’s, Upton’s, Dimaggio’s, Bonds’, Griffey’s etc. genetics have played a factor.

My dad and mom are some of the least coordinated people you’ll ever meet. But apparently when I was like 2 years old I randomly picked up a bat and started swinging it and I had never seen baseball played before. I would like to think I throw pretty hard for my age (74-75 MPH fastball) but neither of my parents are any good at baseball. I really don’t think genes have anything to do with being good at baseball, but to be good at it, part needs to come to you naturally.

I dont get the whole “started swing bat when I was 2”. It could have just caught your fancy at the moment. There are no genes to be good at baseball. There are genes to be athletic however. And to be good at baseball you have to be athletic.

I do not consider David Wells athletic. Genes can tell you what your bone structure will be like and all that good stuff and that may help/hurt you in baseball. It doesn’t always depend on how athletic you are but sometimes it depends on what you were given to work with (bone structure and stuff) and how you use it.

David Wells can bunt for hits!

was babe ruth athletic?

He had athletic talent. He just didnt do anything with it. It was in his genetic code to be athletic and have muscle mass and hand eye coordination and stuff like that, but he just didnt take advantage of it as much as he could have.

This is just anecdotal (in other words, I have no ‘empirical’ proof, but my observations over the last 40 years seem to indicate) that if you look at hard-throwing pitchers through the years, the one thing that seems to be similar is that they all have very broad shoulders. It’s my belief that the wider the shoulders, the bigger the separation and the easier it is to achieve exceptional velocity. Heck, look at even some of the slow-throwers like Maddox and Jaime Moyer. They got curtain rods for shoulders and neither one looks like they put much effort into their throws.

In this, genetics definitely plays a role. This isn’t to say that other guys can’t throw hard, but next time you see a guy throwing smoke, take a look at the shoulders and see if I’m right.

[quote=“hoseman18”]This is just anecdotal (in other words, I have no ‘empirical’ proof, but my observations over the last 40 years seem to indicate) that if you look at hard-throwing pitchers through the years, the one thing that seems to be similar is that they all have very broad shoulders. It’s my belief that the wider the shoulders, the bigger the separation and the easier it is to achieve exceptional velocity. Heck, look at even some of the slow-throwers like Maddox and Jaime Moyer. They got curtain rods for shoulders and neither one looks like they put much effort into their throws.

In this, genetics definitely plays a role. This isn’t to say that other guys can’t throw hard, but next time you see a guy throwing smoke, take a look at the shoulders and see if I’m right.[/quote]

Interesting, I could see that affecting the ability to reach higher velocities significantly because it increases radius of rotation. It’s like a gear system.

Ideas why Babe Ruth was successful, very genetic, not necessarily athletic, http://www.baseballfit.com/baseball-combine.htm

was babe ruth athletic - yes. the greatest athlete to play the game hands down. jim thorpe was close but no other player has pitched and hit at the elite levels of the babe.

did he work at it, not much.

sometimes athletes don’t have to work at it, but they are rare. and if they did work at it, there’s no telling what good or bad might have happened.

on the shoulders related to throwing hard. the orthopedic we saw said that laxity (a loose shoulder capsule) is a characteristic of hard throwers. that’s why you must keep the muscles strong to protect the shoulder at high velocities, and stop when the muscles are fatigued to avoid serious and sometimes permanent injury.

did sachel paige have wide shoulders? the rest i think of did.

Good point. When I was a soph in High School I threw in the high 80’s (maybe higher, it was the stopwatch method not radar), and never knew where it would go. I was always very frustrated by my inability to spot the ball.

When I got a shoulder injury several years later, the ortho I saw told me I had the loosest shoulder capsule he’d ever seen. My son appears to have inherited the laxity, and as seen in some of his previously posted vids here, he has huge “bounce” as well. The difference is that he can spot the ball pretty dang well. So once again we see the influence of genetics, improved by proper guidance and conditioning, making a better athlete.

our orthopedic said the looser (nice word) the shoulder, the more critical it is to strengthen the 5 muscles that hold it in place. 3 in the front, 2 in the back. most folks don’t have too much trouble in the front, when you throw it works them. the problem usually occur from the 2 in the back which don’t get much work (like the thigh muscles - most folks pull hamstrings not quads)

we do flys with 5 lb dumbells while lieing over a 65cm fitness ball (3 sets of 10), then running motions, and finally picking the dumbells up by grasping by one end, elbows extended and raising them just above the head while on the ball. this is tough if you do 3 cycles of all 3 exercises and do not rest between the 3 lifts, and then only 10-20 sec. between the cycles.

it’s tough trying to be good isn’t it.

we should have a fishing team or something. nah!