How to throw a change-up

what the title says lol i feel silly for asking, but I am using a circle change grip and its way outta control, either high, or outside. Do I throw it just as hard as a fastball? my hands are 8" exact. can someone post a pic of a grip I should use and how to throw it?

What is your age, the circle change-up is more of an advanced type of pitch that is best thrown when a little older.

im 15, how about a 3 fingered change?

That is more of a beginers pitch and if the circle-change doesn’t work too well I’d suggest you to try that. I never could throw a change-up real well. Instead I throw somewhat of a forkball change-up. But for being in love with this website I’m not too serious of a pitcher and will most likely only pitch my senior year. But I will pitch in the summer. The way i throw mine is I really choke the ball like a forkball, and just whip it through, I have some experience with it and have decent control, it’s a very hard pitch to control and took a little while but it works good and my high school coach likes it. Unless I stay down on JV I won’t even pitch but I have fun so it’s all good.

Regardless of the grip you use, you need to sell it as a fastball. This means same mechanics, same arm slot, same arm speed, and same release point as your fastball. Trust the grip to take something off and keep everything else the same. If the grip doesn’t take enough off, try pronating (only to your comfort level) and/or try another grip. Pronating might also get you some movement.

Yikes! i would never tell anyone they are too young to throw a changeup. Are you suggesting they should only throw fastballs?

the change up is the most valuable pitch in baseball and it isn’t taught enough to younger kids because the fastball and curveball are so glorified.

Roger’s got it…grip is secondary , fastball arm action is primary. Experiment to find what works for you …

ok well im gonna try, and yea I only threw fastballs my entire career but this year im gonna make it different, thats prolly why I got hit a lot even though I had decent control.

dusty delso had a great post about keeping the tips of the middle and ring fingers off of the ball. I grip similar to a circle change, but I emphasize a loose comfortable grip, rather than the awkward “circle” on the side of the ball. Seems to work pretty well for me. Search around and you should find Dusty’s post.

I began working on the circle change back in August and have become comfortable throwing it. To be honest I was taught by a pitching coach so most of this stuff is what he showed me and not what I taught myself.

  1. Arm motion, arm speed, & delivery tempo are all the same as your fastball (& any pitch other pitch). Initially most of the problems I had throwing a change were related to the tempo of my delivery. I wanted to throw a slower ball - so I slowed my delivery down. This seemed to have screwed up my timing/delivery resulting in me leaving the ball high in the strike zone.

To solve this I would throw a fastball - then a changeup then a fastball then a changeup, etc. I just wanted to get the feel for not changing anything that shouldn’t be changed.

  1. It is probably easier to find a picture of the grip then it is for me to describe it. For a fastball the thumb is underneath the ball - but for a circle change the thumb is to the side of the ball. I also try to keep my pinky finger above the centerline on the opposite side - it is my understanding - keeping your thumb to side of the ball reduces the velocity of the ball.

  2. I do pronate my hand just a little. My pitching coach told me the more you pronate your hand the more the balls moves from side to side. He suggested that I wanted the ball to not move side to side but to drop throw the strike zone - (his reasoning being if it is hit it will still be a weak ground ball).

  3. It wasn’t until recently (November) that I began to see any consistency with my changeup (change in velocity with a downward break). However, two weeks ago my instructor noticed that I was telegraphing my changeup by slightly changing my delivery - so know I need to work on that.

  4. I worked on thowing the changeup when I ever I did long-toss - I would throw a changeup even when I was at 120’. I also worked on locating it during lessons and flat ground throwing. The long toss has seemed to have helped me to break the habit of slowing down my delivery/arm speed to slow down the ball.

  5. As my coach always says - change the grip - nothing else needs to change!

Hope this helps

Yikes! i would never tell anyone they are too young to throw a changeup. Are you suggesting they should only throw fastballs?

the change up is the most valuable pitch in baseball and it isn’t taught enough to younger kids because the fastball and curveball are so glorified.[/quote]

You misunderstood, I wasn’t too clear but jamesh seemed to understand what I was saying. I was saying the circlechangeup grip can be a tough pitch to master. He picked right up and asked about the 3 finger change-up which is a better pitch for youngsters.

I belive I read somewhere that its easier to throw a circle-change with bigger hands. Trust me change-up is the key to pitching. Sometiems it takes awhile to find the right grip.

ok im not a proffesional by any mean but without my change-up my era would have been WAY higher. so i kinda know what im talking about. basically go on web look at different grips, try them in front of computer and what feels more comfortable should be your change up and you never change it. now if you have a radar gun heres a good way to loose your slow arm delivery

throw a fastball look at mph now throw a changeup and try to throw it faster that you fastball.

House has taught my son and a whole lot of others some very interesting things about the typical change-ups that pitchers use:

  1. For the circle-change, c-change, 3-fingered-change you do need to pronate those pitches at release, not quite as much as a screwball, but still significant pronation, to get reasonable movement and diminishment of velocity. If thrown with palm forward at release, like a fastball release, those pitches may have enough behind them to cross the plate like mediocre fastballs. Not good. Since hearing this advice I’ve looked at pictures of a few good circle-change guys that were taken maybe 10-20 milliseconds before the release point. Sure enough, that circle made with the thumb and index finger is pointed pretty much toward the catcher–a highly pronated grip going into the release point.

  2. House also said that every common pitch grip, except splitters/forkballs, needs to have the thumb and middle finger exactly cutting the ball in half. He showed a circle-change by first gripping the ball with only thumb and middle finger–making sure the ball was exactly divided in half–and then moving his index finger to make the circle with thumb. Without moving the thumb and middle finger from their original positons! My son couldn’t manage it. I’ve got big hands and long fingers but this was a very difficult grip for me to achieve properly, let alone throw, let alone throw with pronation.

  3. At that point House introduced the split-finger FB to us as a viable change-up alternative–by cracky, that works! No difficult screwball-like pronation into release point, because it is thrown palm forward, like any other FB. But, the bigger the split, the more velocity you take off of the ball. When thrown well, those suckers appear to have a low rate of top spin that makes them sink at or near the plate. To the hitter they may look very much like a 2-seam FB, but man, thrown with exactly the same everything as a 2-seamer, they are ~10 mph slower and sink in a very filthy way.

thanks everyone, K i found a grip im comfortable with I havent thrown it yet but ill be practicing it, anyway I hold it like my 4 seam fastball, cept my middle and ring finger are where my index and middle usually are, while my index hooks like a circle. my thumb is a little to the side of the ball

my question is do I keep my pinky on the ball or curled in and my knuckle on the ball?

Wow I thought I was crazy and that throwing a pitch like that was sort of stupid, this is exately how I throw my change-up. It works unbelievebly good. But as you said the more you choke it the less speed but also less control. It’s harder to locate but it does lower the MPH considerably. I am a pretty slow pitcher. Not really a power pitcher, but with this pitch I can really fake people out.

Hey Bower,

I don’t think Bruce Sutter would say the splitter is a stupid pitch…it was his HOF ticket.

the change up you are describing (a fastball off the middle and ring finger) is the change up glavine uses.

pedro throws his change up off the ring finger in the middle or equator of the ball (i think house will modify his view on the thumb/middle finger theory over time).

you can also throw a bugs bunny change throwing a fastball grip off the ends of the ring finger and pinky if you aren’t afraid to work. this is the nastiest change i’ve ever seen.

On the change up, should the ideal rotation from a right handed pitcher be from 2 to 8 on a clock? Also, is there any other coaching or teaching points on the change up, I feel like my players are throwing it like a fastball (meaning arm speed) but I would like to see a little less velocity on the change. We work on pronation drills and we pre set the forearm when throwing it. Just wondering if there is any certain thing you look for either it be the ball or the pitcher when the change is thrown. Thanks!!

You need to make sure your power fingers (index/middle) are off-center on the ball to take speed away. That helps me tons.

On a side note, I’ve noticed that when many pitchers throw a change, their hand flares out while on a fastball it is curled in after release. What’s your take, anyone, on what this means?

Using myself as an example:

When throwing the splitter, it is important to keep the thumb centered beneath the “V” formed by the index and middle fingers. House claims that allowing the thumb to creep up the side of the ball towards the index finger creates a tendancy to supinate which we all know is bad. I presume House’s claim is based on observations made from high speed video analysis.