How to start pitching?

Hi. I’m 14, and I recently started playing baseball after a strange revelation i had (I suddenly decided to be a MLB player… a lofty goal, hahaha). I have NO EXPERIENCE IN BASEBALL, until like two days ago. Right now, I can catch quite decently with a mitt. I can also throw (SHORT DISTANCE) with a bit more comfort than before.

After contemplating with my friend (who helped me practcie) what position I should attempt to play/learn, I decided to be a pitcher. YES I KNOW! Pitching is one of the most difficult things to learn in baseball, yet I want to be one. I know how funny it is that someone who has no experience in baseball actually dreams of learning to pitch right away, but please, no hate messages. :wink:

What I want to ask is, what can I do right now to start being a pitcher? Many websites I’ve visited for information is quite confusing, because they mostly give advice for “established” pitchers. I need concrete information for a beginner - someone who doesn’t even know the basics/stance/mechanics of pitching.

Can you please give me some information on how to pitch? Also, I’m fairly on the weak side (so i started weight lifting and running to increase endurance/strength). What muscles must I develop to be good at pitching? Also, what should I do during my first 3 months as a baseball learner?

Wow! That’s quite a tall order you’ve got there. Here you are, an absolute beginner who wants and needs to learn everything there is to know about pitching. Well, the best advice I can give you is to find a really good pitching instructor, someone with experience working with tyros such as yourself and who can and will start with the basics and teach you what you need to know.
You would want to connect with a teacher who does not advocate the “cookie-cutter” approach but who will help you discover such things as your natural motion and who will then show you how to make the most of what you have and can do. Mechanics are all-important, and your instructor must be able to work with you on the basics and help you find your own mechanics, what will work for you and help you become an effective pitcher. That’s about all I can tell you, but I wish you the best of luck in this endeavor. :slight_smile: 8)

Skoli -

There is no reason whatsoever that you cannot start pitching now and I applaud your determination and spunk. The only thing you have to understand is that you are way behind the curve and you will have to work extremely hard to catch up with your peers. Here are some first steps I would recommend for you.

  1. Start working out
    a. sprinting - at least every other day
    b. long distance running (a mile or more) - weekly
    b. lunges (and lots of them!)
    c. ab work (and lots of it!)
    d. do enough upper body weight lifting to build up some strength, but not bulk. Work chest, back, arms and shoulders. Work the legs as well. You can’t get them strong enough!

  2. Start studying the game. Watch MLB games on TV. Go to local college or HS games and study the pitchers. Learn the lingo. What is stride? What is balance point? What is pronation? That kind of stuff. Since you have not played baseball - you will have to learn the rules of the game as well. There is a lot of information on this site - but it will take some digging. Like I said it will be a lot of work - nobody is going to hand it to you. You have to want it and do it!

  3. Like Zito says - Get in with a good pitching coach. If you can’t afford one maybe you can talk to your high school coach and see what suggestions he has. Maybe he has a good pitcher on his staff that needs to make a little pocket change that would be willing to work with you.

  4. Work hard - study hard - set your goals and achieve them! You got a long way to go - but you won’t get there without taking the first step. Now get off the computer and get after it!

Good luck bro.

I guess you’re not the only one who gets my first name wrong. I’ve been thinking, maybe I should change my name to Hermione Hosselplotz or something. :lol: Anyhow, it’s all good advice for the kid who wants to learn how to pitch. 8)

Basically, 3 years ago I had never picked up a baseball, now almost 3 years later I like to think I am being scouted by provincial teams and like to think that I have a legit shot at playing some form of college ball… so you definitely still have a chance.

What I did was basically go out somewhere… anywhere and just throw the ball all day… literally. Like from 9am to 10pm on weekends and whenever I had free time during the week. During lunch I would go out in the school field and throw the ball against the fence until I had to go for class. Showed up early for school and threw the ball at the fence for an hour before class… anything you can do to throw, because like Viking said, you are WAY behind your peers.

But before you go out to play catch, watch all the games you can, study all the clips in the video library of this website and get a feel for how you should go about throwing a ball.

Also, stick around here and soak in as much as you can because a lot of what is said here is very helpful… I know without this site there is no way I would be in the situation I am in. (Thanks everyone! :slight_smile: )

And also, don’t give up on being a position player… a lot of pitchers turn into fielders later on in their career and vice versa… so it can’t hurt to work on hitting and fielding in addition to pitching.

Good luck.

My apologies ZitA.

Please don’t send the family after me. I figure with a name like that you gotta have connections :wink:

Every time I see your name on here I keep thinking Barry Zito.


First, I applaud what everyone else has already said to you in this thread. You’ve been given some great advice–for a person in your circumstances the very best advice I’ve seen, IMO, is for you to find a good pitching coach who will work with you on a regular basis. There is really no substitute for experienced guidance and you should note carefully that several people have included this advice in their remarks to you.

To make the point more clear, I suggest that you take a look at the following clip of Dinesh Patel:

Dinesh and his compatriot, Rinku Singh, are from small villages in rural India and neither of them had ever touched a baseball, or even seen a baseball game, before competing in a throwing contest that eventually allowed them to come to the US to study baseball pitching. They may differ in some ways from you because they both had some amateur experience throwing the javelin and both were athletic enough to have decent raw velocity for throwing. However, neither of these guys had ever held a baseball in their hands until they were 19 - 20 years old, and that’s where you have a tremendous edge.

It may surprise you to learn that these two 19/20 yos learned enough about pitching and baseball in about 8 months to be signed to minor league contracts by the Pirates late last year. Was it a set-up…? Well, yes and no. Both guys were gifted enough to throw the ball hard, without any further notion of what pitchers actually need to do in games. There was definitely PR value to be gained from any successful outcome of this experiment. However, when these guys got their try-outs in front of MLB scouts last Fall, nobody could go out and perform for them–after only 8 months of focused training they both showed that they could consistently throw strikes with several types of pitches and field their position. They both touched 90-91 mph with fastballs. No one could do that for them (not even Public Relations people who can sometimes appear to make silk purses from a pig’s ear). Both are currently playing rookie ball for the Pirates organization, never having touched a baseball before they were 19 or 20 years old. Is that clear enough?

You share at least one terrific advantage with these two guys: If you have never played baseball before, then you have not spent years throwing a baseball with counter-productive mechanics. So, you will not need to spend lots of time overcoming deeply-ingrained poor habits.

Assuming that you are athletically inclined, focused on your goals, and willing to do the physical work necessary to accomplish your goals–a good pitching coach can help you get there.

If you think you can’t afford lessons from a good coach…find a way. If you spend your time doing fruitless experiments without personal guidance from an experienced coach, you’ll find yourself going backwards when an experienced coach could really shorten some trails for you and help you keep moving forward.

To oc2viking: Don’t worry about it. Just remember that Barry Zito is a southpaw and I’m a righthander! :slight_smile:

It would appear we have another minion in our dark army of pitchers.

Anyways, first off, read all of what’s been said above and I would recommend that first things first you learn the fastball and change-up as your first two pitches and just work on those, no need for the breaking stuff until you get used to the mechanics of pitching. Remember that location is more important than velocity so work on your ability to locate pitches first and foremost. I may not be giving the best advice but give me credit for trying guys. lol

+1 credit for the knuckleball cowboy :slight_smile:

Just because I’m from Wyoming doesn’t mean I’m a cowboy. :frowning:
That’s profiling and profiling is wrong. :shock:

I like that… I think thats what I will call from now on :lol:

Curse this dreaded state. :evil:

OK - how bout “Knuckleball Gangsta!” :lol:

lol. I thought I had already been dubbed the Knuckleball Ninja.

Fair enough!