How's your summer league baseball season going?

How is your pitching? How does your arm feel? What are you working on this summer? Most importantly, are you having fun out there on the mound?

Had a great summer season even though I had to work through pain issues of tendonitis. Now I am 4 week into 6 weeks off to heal, I have never taken more than 2 weeks off before. I really want to get back at it, doing some cardio, some weight stuff starting tomorrow (thanks Strength Coach FL). I always have fun on the mound…there is no other way to do it!!!

KCDawgjr’s had a great season this year. As some of you may recall, jr had an elbow injury at the very end of last season that put him out for more than a couple of months. He started on a new, higher level team this season and did great all through winter workouts and was playing well in thir first tournament. He pitched one inning in their third game, and then promptly broke his right ring finger on his pitching hand in the fourth one. So, although he continued to play, he couldn’t pitch.

Jr started his comeback on May 20th with a 5-inning complete game (mercy rule) win to help his team win their second tournament. He got his last win yesterday going 5 innings in a 15u wood bat tournament in the team’s last game of the season. In all, he threw 31 innings and ended up 3-3 on the year. If he could somehow remove just 3 of those 31 innings he would probably have 3 more wins (one a no decision and two of the losses being reversed). But alas, that’s not the way it works.

He also gave up a couple of homers this year, the first ones since he was 10 years old. I still kid him about the second one, offering to take him to the ballpark to see if it has landed yet. Who knew a 14 year old kid could hit a ball that far?

His plan is to work on velocity, velocity, velocity between now and high school baseball tryouts next spring. In addition to long toss, he’ll be working with his pitching coach on gaining strength, muscle and weight. The weight part is really tough to keep on as he’ll start basketball in September and will literally run any gains off in a two week period. And in his off time, he wants to work on getting much better at throwing the curve that he has been learning.

As for me, I had a great year being the supportive parent rather than the coach and I didn’t lose one single nights sleep over any games this year. That was a bonus.

Pitching very well this year, building off a strong high school season. my record is 5-1 but its not really about that. My era is under 1.30 and my strikeout:walk ratio is about 3:1. I’ve been working on location, working the corners a lot better as of late. Just ordered your tuffcuff book and plan on incorporating that into my routine. Looking to add some more velocity for next spring, but still keep my control and walks down. Play in a 16U wood bat league, going to some good tournaments in the upcoming weeks, hopefully i measure up well with other pitchers.

We are 3 victories away from winning the State Championship!! By the sounds of it I’ll be getting the ball in either the Semi-final or championship game!

Recently I’ve been trying to add a new pitch to my repertoire, something called the shuuto, a kind of fast japanese screwball. I’ve worked on it but it doesnt have nearly as much break as my slider, so I was wondering if any screwballers out there can offer some tips?

well, this is a very debated topic, weather the shutto is actually a real pitch or if its just a tailling fastball like pitchers like shawn camp or brandon league are throwing.

most videos ive seen of supposed shutto’s are essentially that, a 2 seam fastball thrown from a low arm slot that tails back in the strike zone.

now, as a screwballer myself (probably one of the very few on this forum) i know there is a screwball that can be thrown harder and acts mostly as a slider but i never was thaught the pitch by any guy who threw it in the big leagues. my screwball was thought to me by bill lee a very good lefty from the 80s who was at a expos old timers softball game. i asked him about his screwball and he stood up looking very excited about it, started giving everyone out there a clinic.

the power screwball though, is something i learned from valenzuela footage. its basically an inverted slider.

explaining it is somehow difficult id need to post a video about it if you’re interested.

Actually, the “shuuto” is what might be described as a changeup screwball. There was a pitcher, Shigetoshi Hasegawa, who threw it a lot when he was with the Seattle Mariners—but he was not the first to use it. The Cincinnati Reds had a pitcher named Joey Jay back in the 1960s, who threw what he called a “slop-slider”—it was a shuuto, and when he threw it the opposing batters would pop it up like so much Kleenex. And before that, there was a guy named Ed Lopat who had a changeup screwball which he used sometimes—that was the shuuto. It seems the Japanese liked to come up with new names for pitches that had been around for years!