How to hit corners effectively


#1

Looking “randomly” online for this topic it appears the most common response to this is:

Practice, practice, practice and focus on the catcher’s mitt

Is that really it? Or is there a slight adjustment mechanically somewhere to make it happen?

Thoughts?


#2

One of the best ways to develop feel for specific spots is to pick a spot and work on it. Throw only to that spot for the entire bullpen. See how many times you are in the vicinity of the target. Track your progress. This type of focused bullpen allows you to develop mechanics within a desired margin for error. Scattering pitches all over the place in a bullpen only allows you to develop a feel for hitting the zone, and not for spots within the zone.


#3

Thanks for the reply. So there is no “conscious” adjustment mechanically (same landing spot for front leg etc)?


#4

Actually a great way to think about painting corners and hitting those spots precisely is to think about location coming from the extension after your front foot lands. So if a righty were throwing outside to a righty, he would go through his delivery normal and as his trunk starts to rotate and he nears his release point, he feels his hand just reach out to the outside corner. You want to think about throwing down the middle but letting the extension of your hand just REACH for that spot. Trying to fly open to throw to a spot or step towards the spot can lead to significant mechanical flaws that can cause much strain on the elbow and shoulder. Just reach out towards your spot as you throw through the ball.


#5

Not to mention that a 0.5 degree variance at release is one foot miss at the plate, you really can’t land in wildly different spots and throw strikes, let alone hit a spot.


#6

During this offseason I spent a lot of time trying to improve my control because it has always been awful. I was listening to Pedro Martinez talk on MLB Tonight about how he gained his control and he said that what he did was if he was trying to hit the outside corner he would aim far enough outside to the point where he knew he would not miss inside (he did this for both sides of the plate). After practicing this enough he would work his aiming point closer and closer to the black until he was able to hit his spots effectively. To summarize, if you’re aiming outside, miss outside. If you’re aiming inside, miss inside.