Good pitches for slow velocity pitchers?
Gotta work on accuracy then, inside outside up and down, fast (your fast) and slow. Keep the batter off balance as to what they are going to see, might not get loads of strike outs but nothing wrong with balls in play on the ground and in the air.
Work on developing a good 2-seam fastball; the extra movement can compensate for a lack of velocity. A changeup would need to have decent movement as the speed difference won’t be as large.
If you’re old enough, work on developing a curveball and/or slider. Make yourself understand how your actions (wrist, arm, finger pressure, etc) dictate how the ball will move and learn to cut or sink the ball.
Basically, learn the pitches that every kind of pitcher will throw, but work on using them effectively. Slower pitchers tend to be junkballers as they need to rely more on breaking pitches because of a mediocre fastball.
Welcome to the club!
I didn’t have a fast ball to speak of. I knew that I would never be a rip-roarin’ fireballer like Feller, Raschi, Gibson or Verlander (to name four of that ilk), so I went in the other direction. I became a snake-jazzer and a very good one.
Actually, I did have a curve ball to begin with. I was eleven years old when I discovered that I had a natural sidearm delivery, and what came attached to it was a nice little curve ball (it was just there, don’t ask me how or why). So I figured, well, I had a curve ball, let me work with it and see what I could do with it. I experimented and found that by throwing it with a sharp karate-chop wrist snap I could get a good break on it, and I could also change speeds on it to some extent. I also acquired a knuckle-curve and a very nice palm ball, and I could change speeds on that knuckle-curve—what a nice pitch. And I discovered the crossfire—that’s a move which works only with the sidearm delivery—and I fell so in love with it that I used it extensively, and I found that it gave me double the number of pitches I had.
Then, at sixteen, came the big breakthrough. I wanted to know something about the slider, and as a result I found Ed Lopat. He was a key member of the Yankees’ Big Three rotation—and one of the finest pitching coaches anyone could ever hope to work with. He showed me how to throw a good one, and it led to his taking me in hand, working with me, expanding my repertoire and teaching me a whole bunch of advanced stuff he felt I needed to know. I became a better pitcher than I had been before. He taught me a lot about strategic pitching—and when one doesn’t have the velocity (although I did end up somewhere along the line with an 81MPH four-seamer with good movement on it) one has to rely on control, command, keeping the batters off balance, what is now called pitching to contact (he said “Make them go after YOUR pitch, what you WANT them to hit”). He told me that just about any pitch could be turned into a nice changeup, and he demonstrated several such for me. And I picked up on a variation of the slider that just murdered opposing batters—you use a knuckleball grip, positioned somewhat off-center—and I learned about getting inside the batters’ heads and messing up their timing and their thinking: a specialty of his, if you remember what he used to do to the Cleveland Indians!
I gobbled up everything he told me, and after all these decades I still remember it. So I tell you, if you can’t overpower the hitters, outthink them. Oh yeah—that slider, which I nicknamed “Filthy McNasty” after a character in an old W.C. Fields movie, became my strikeout pitch. Have fun, pick a few pitches you can use, and use them wisely. 8) :baseballpitcher:
You got pitching training from Ed Lopat?!?! Wow, respect! Ted
Williams said he was one of the pitchers that was most difficult
for him. That’s HIGH praise.
I was reading Ted Williams’ “Art and Science of Pitching” once, and he had a list of the five toughest pitchers he ever had to face. Ed Lopat was at the head of that list. Just goes to show you.
Watch the best at it in the game right now - Jamie Moyer