Help me make MLB

Introuduction Time :

Jim Goebel
6’6 210 lbs

I am tall and athletic, slightly lanky, could use some more strength in the hips and legs for sure. I am 24 years old. I pitched a lot in high school, but did not pitch much in college because of control problems, and I wanted to play First Base and hit.

That’s kind of the history of the situation. I have had complete breakdowns on the mound, where I just can’t find the strike zone. I honestly don’t know if it’s mechanics or what. I don’t think I’m a headcase, and generally I am usually pretty relaxed when playing anything but for some reason, sometimes when I pitch I just LOSE it.

I recently went to the Minnesota Twins tryout in Ft. Meyers FL this past Saturday. I did this more than anything else because I wanted to see if my arm has made any progress and/or if I could throw strikes.

Well, the morning session I was one of 60 pitchers to throw. I was one of the first group of 8. I had people wowing, I’m sure the twins guys were wondering where I was from and why I wasn’t pitching somewhere, because my fastball they told me was 90-92 and my curve ball was sharp. I was (for the most part) keeping the ball down, a couple curveballs broke out of the strike zone in the dirt and my fastball was left up a bit. But I was throwing hard, felt good and mostly strikes.

After I threw in the morning, I had a couple agents approach me and ask me where I was from and if I usually threw in the 90s. I mean, I threw that good and it was impressive enough for people to say wow a bit. And for the rest of the day most of the twins guys were calling me by my name Jim not my number.

Then came the afternoon, I could make excuses about sitting around for 4 hours waiting to pitch. And psychologically I totally psyched myself out and pitched absolutely horrible in the game situation they selected me for. I lost it, lost of composure, confidence, control, etc.

Walked 3 and hit one guy in an inning of work.

Before we threw , the Twins coach said something like , baseballs like golf. To play golf on TV you have to be able to hit it long, and straight. A lot of people hit it long. Only the ones who hit it straight play on TV. Same thing with baseball. Lots of people throw hard. Those that can throw hard with command play on TV. Well, he’s right.

I wouldn’t have confidence to go and play on TV and not make an ass of myself with my current mechanics and ability to blow up like I did. But what the hell? God gave me this arm which I could make LOTS of money with and I think I should use it. I don’t mind engineering (what I now do for a living ) but jeebus, with my frame I could be throwing 94-98 in a year or two. It’s sick! One of the agents half joking asked how I would like to be driving out of the tryout in a cadillac. I kind of smiled but now I just feel like I freaking blew it. I mean, I was so close to making a killer impression, and really doing it. I need to get some consistancy and breakdown my mechanics.

Tell you guys what,

I am going to post a video of me throwing off a mound. If we can get this fixed, I’ll give you guys a cut of my one day million dollar salary. I guess the first step is just to find someone that believes in me and is willing to work with me at the lower levels of an organization…

Video forthcoming and tell me what you guys think -

Well if you are throwing that hard, then there may not be much wrong with your mechanics. That said, I’ll look forward to seeing your video. As far as accuracy, you may need to slow yourself down for 5 mins during your throwing session and work on hitting one spot. Then speed up to normal velocity and see what’s going on. Me personally, I believe that I’m much better throwing to someone instead of a wall, tire, line, dog, whatever. So try to find someone whos’ not afraid of your 92 mph heater ( and has proper equipment, i.e. a CUP). If you live in Maryland or Delaware, I can help you out. I’d love to see what you’re doing as oppose to me live so I can steal… copy … umm I mean… observe your technique :wink:.

By all means, post some video. However, from what you’ve described, a large part of what happened could be mental - nerves. Or it could be that you pitched, cooled down, and then pitched again. Maybe you didn’t warm up adequately before pitching the second time.

I will get a video up (I guess youtube seems to be the preferred route) asap. Yeah, when I was throwing at the tryout the catcher that was matched up with me had a couple balls fly right over his mitt, over his shoulder and into the backstop. And one of my curveballs broke past his mitt and tagged the poor guy in the knee. Thankfully he had the protector on.

I have a feeling that when I am throwing that hard, my mechanics might not be all that bad, but like I said, when I pitched later in the day I didn’t feel comfortable and I think my release point was all over the place.

After reading some more stuff on here one thing I want to try to do is really concentrate on not rotating my torso and exploding/delivering until I have landed on my front foot. Of course when I am in the frame of mind of throwing balls and losing my nerves, I am not really concentrating on my form just rather trying to place the ball (funny how that DOESNT work) where I want it to be. If I can potentially find my happy place and one or two things form wise to concentrate on when I pitch, maybe I can really drive home the right form and get the right muscle memory instilled, and run from there.

I have been a very comfy and solid ace for a good high school baseball team in the past so that’s refreshing to know that at least mentally I can succeed in that role. So it has to be mechanics… Has to be! :slight_smile:

Yes the mental part of it is a huge factor. But it’s hard to have confidence and NOT lose your nerves when the harder you try to throw a strike, the farther from throwing a strike you get. The catcher walks out and says, relax, and I say, yeah, no problem I’ll relax… How do you do that?

I think this is a combination of mental and lack of consistant mechanics. I would like to believe that once I get the right consistant form, and mental approach, I can work this out.

Step 1. Stop worrying about your mechanics.

Step 2. Throw bullpens and work on your control.

Step 3. Start playing in an adult league so you can get used to being on the mound against hitters again.

This might be source for some visualization material. Picture a specific situation where you kicked some booty and replay that in your mind.

I’m not sold on that yet. But we’ll take a look when you post some video.

Quick update

I talked to a midwest regional scout yesterday and one of the overriding themes was when to know to give up the dream. I have talked to many people with dreams of going to play college basketball or whatever it may be, and in most cases, after having played with them and known enough about the sport to know they were in folley for thinking they could make it, it’s hard to know

1.When to quit on a dream and go for something else
2.How to tell someone that they just don’t have what it takes

The scout said again and again, without seeing me, that I need to be objective about it. Objectively, I know that one day I will be able to throw 94-95.

I don’t know objectively if I can mentally and mechanically get over the hump to the point where I feel comfortable on the mound. Anyhoo - tonight I’m video taping myself throwing off a mound as my arm has finally recovered from throwing 100% in the Twins tryout this past Saturday. I hope that someone that knows what they are talking about will give me an objective assessment on this after seeing me throw.