Glove arm movement

I am working with a 14yr old player whose left arm(glove arm)has a downward action, more toward his knee on his throw. Which leaves his glove down about his shin at release. Does anyone have any thoughts on how i can help him get his elbow to move in a more rotational movement.

What do you mean by “rotational movement”.

i guess i mean that once you are at that point of hip and shoulder seperation where your sholders need to rotate to catch up to the hips, and the lead arm should pull back in a manner where the glove would finish around your oblique.

I would recommend against pulling the glove back for three reasons. First, if you watch slo-mo of the best pitchers in the game, more often than not the glove does NOT come back from the position it is first extended to out front. Rather, the pitcher’s body moves towards the glove.

Second, pulling the glove usually results in early shoulder rotation.

Third, control can be impacted when the glove side moves around.

What I teach is to turn the glove over as the shoulders start to rotate and stabilize the glove where it’s at. This is what the NPA calls “swivel and stabilize”. It is one of the 8 elements of the NPA mechanics model which they based on commonalities they identified in the best pitchers in the game.

In addition to what Roger has said.

Here are some of the things that I have found in the youth game relative to your situation:

Physical Immaturity
A bit more development with strength and stamina
Glove Size
The glove may be too large and thus is being used more as a counterbalance and
at the same time act like a lever-like action to get more “umph!” with the pitch.
Head position
It helps if the pitcher keeps the back of his head in-line with the heel of his pivot foot. The pivot foot is the foot in contact with the rubber during the delivery. Notice in our picture below, both pitchers are right-handed, thus their pivot foot would be the right foot.
Pivot Foot
Try to stress to your pitcher to collapse on the instep of the pivot foot throughout the entire delivery, instead of turning on the ball of the foot. this simple yet effect foot discipline will help this pitcher greatly with controlling the forward motion of the body, thus reducing the “rush” that tends to put more stress loads on the pitching arm. See our pitcher on the left. Notice the three (3) yellow lines down at his pivot foot.
Copy Cat
The youngster could be copying another youngster, or, someone seen on TV playing
in the Majors.

Many pitchers have found it helpful to turn the glove’s pocket section towards a baseline
when their glove arm is extended. Right-handed pitcher goes towards the first baseline,
left-handed pitcher towards the third baseline. See the picture below and you’ll see what I mean.
Pay no attention to the yellow arrows, they were for another posted topic.

Coach B.

Roger, I never thought of it as the pitchers body moves to the glove, I have always preached to pull the glove back but I really think you are on to something. I have said that the front side is your control side and so the pitch is controlled by the fact that you are pulling you body to the glove…it’s an epiffany! I really like it when something makes more sence and I can clearly see how to explain it :smiley: :smiley:

While there are always exceptions to everything, if you find side-view video of some the best pitchers in the game, simply watch their glove when it gets to its furthest forward position and compare it to some object in the background. Then watch if it ever moves back from that position using the object in the background as a guage. I think you’ll see that the glove generally does not move back.

I love it, I am in another industry that evaluates body motion and mechanics and it really excites me that my son has started enjoying it in his baseball, it’s great to have some of these very cool mechanical items.

Its hard to tell with out seeing any video or photos but i would assume that he isnt staying back. When working on his mechanics make sure he is keeping his wait over his back leg as long as possible. If he does this he has a better chance of keeping his glove side up.

I am trying to give a link to a youtube video i posted.

Centerpunch, you made the video private, you need to go the video on your youtube account and make it public for everyone.

OK. i got it. i think. My first time posting a video.

No problem, looks a little crazy on the first movement to home, seems like you disconnect your upper body from the hips, saying that when your front foot comes down the position looks really good and you look to have good body control from there. Do you experience any control issues or a pitch not working at times?

I am the Dad. video is my son. Hips look to me like they are leading the way to home like I was taught. He has no control issues. 60IP. this year at 73%strikes. 107 k. 24bb. I just didnt like where the glove ends up, not in a good fielding position. i think we got it worked out, gonna have another session tonight. I will video the end of it.

I have defintely see that style before, all that I was saying that control can be comprimised when the torso and the hips disconnect like that, to get the glove in a better position then the he could work on getting the leg that comes over the top (rf and leg) to finish more beside and to the right of the left foot, that would put him right in front of the catcher and squared up to field his position.

Good Luck!

would’nt that kill all the momentum towards home you created, and put more stress on the arm?

after tonights session. improvement.

This pitcher is a “walker”, and that can lead to some shoulder problems later on in his career - if he pursues this sport seriously.

A “walker” is a pitcher that releases the pitch - then follows it (the pitch) by walking down the mound towards the batter. Usually, weak abdominal muscles coupled with holding back the head and upper torso - trying to load up prior to attacking the downward slope of the mound, is the posture issue most pitchers impress themselves with - thus the “walking” at the end of the release.

Now “walking” after a pitch is not necessarily a bad thing, nor is every pitcher immune to this action after release - but, as a repeated delivery posture is a bad thing. Instead of finishing the pitching cycle, a pitcher with this kind of finish, doesn’t finish the pitch but launches the pitch with an “up” posture, stressing loads on the pitching arm.

The point to be made here is that control of one’s body, physically fit and in control of every motion prior to - during - and after release, is the only posture to be ingrained in a developing athlete who plans on making this position (pitcher) a serious part of his/her life.

I suggest this:

Slow it down a bit and focus on controlling the body from beginning to end. Don’t envision the all mighty cannon down range.
Stride enough to balance out the delivery with controlling the location of the pitch.
Complete the “rotation of the shoulders” DURING the complete pitching cycle, not as a matter of ending it. By “rotating the shoulders” I mean exchanging the glove side shoulder with the pitching side shoulder, burying the pitching side shoulder into the catcher as a completed signature to the pitcher’s delivery cycle.
Stay balanced on the stride leg, drive the upper body DOWNWARD into the dirt in front. Don’t be so aggressive with the release that everything else is subordinated. Control the release as if it was choreographed into the final phase of releasing all the pitcher’s energy - passing that energy on to the baseball - not catapulting it.

This media does have its limitations, so in that regard, I’ve tried to describe a process that is better addressed in person with a competent pitching coach. And on that note, the young man that I see in this video should have a competent pitching coach soon. He seems to have all the makings of a fine pitcher.

Coach B.