HS Senior Slow motion mechanics


#1

Looking for help with my mechanics, mainly velocity but anything regarding health and accuracy is also greatly appreciated.

I’m 5’8 (5’9 on a good day) and around 150 lbs. I’m a high school senior looking to pitch next year somewhere in college. Last time I was clocked topped out at 83/84 and sat at 79/80. Have relied heavily on long toss programs most of my life and am just now incorporating weighted balls (wish I had started sooner).

Anyways here is my video first at real speed side view then slow motion at different angles

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hgXV8hDmT4 [/youtube][/url]


#2

Way too tentative in the delivery. You have to be explosive and finish with electricity! The basic movement pattern is pretty clean…your upper half opens a bit soon but you end up in a pretty good landing position get good extension out in front.

But you aren’t explosive! You’re getting into good positions but there is nothing behind it. You could get a lot more drive out of your back leg. Not a push…keep the same positions you’re already getting in but just do it with more energy…get the hips going a little further out in front of you. Keep the upper half closed just a little bit longer.

You’re undersized, which means the best way to improve your velocity is to get STRONG!

Tim Collins had very efficient mechanics and only threw low 80s in high school because he was so small and weak in addition to being much shorter than you. Now he’s 175lbs and JACKED and throws mid 90s in the MLB.

You have about 20 lbs of muscle to put on, so that’s the first thing. If you max out your body you will throw 90. With your mechanics, it’s that simple. Long toss is good, mechanics are crucial, but nobody throws 90 mph at 5’9" 150lbs, period. So find an MLB pitcher who you want to be like and who has your frame and work to develop your body into that frame.

I threw 73 mph as a freshman in high school at 6’3" 155lbs. I realized that if I wanted to throw 90, there was no way in hell I would do so unless both my body and my mechanics resembled that of elite pitchers. So I put in the work and built myself up over 6 years to 220 lbs and throwing 90-93 with mechanics that have no resemblance to where I started, and very much resemble high level throwers. You have a great starting point, pretty efficient mechanics to build on (7 or 8/10 if we’re going to put a number on it) and just need some explosiveness, size and STRENGTH to be a good college pitcher at the next level.


#3

Lefty,

Greatly appreciated feedback. I was fortunate enough to tweet at Trevor Bauer and he gave me very similar stuff to work on. I can see I need more intent in my all around delivery. With regards to intent, how would you say you build it? Did you do mindless throwing into a net with all out effort and translate it onto the mound or did you start just building your intent on the mound. Also, if you have any good explosive hip and rotation training insight I would love to hear.


#4

I agree with Lanky - mechanics look good but you need to get your butt moving sooner/faster and you need to add strength primarily in the legs (to be able to put on the brakes at foot plant while moving faster)) and core (to stabilize posture while moving faster).

To work on getting your butt moving sooner (relative to peak of knee lift), use the Hershiser drill to initially get used to the new timing. The towel drill will also let you get in lots of reps using the new timing. But don’t forget to take it to the mound as well.


#5

Your foot leads your hips instead of your hips leading your foot.


#6

Plaz and Roger,

I understand what you guys saying with the hips being a little slow and maybe not as active as they should be. I do the Hershiser drill a lot actually, but do you think my lead leg could be acting a little too soon and fast relative to the rest of my body? I see this is Sonny Gray for the A’s, he’s seems to be the opposite of me with this, he moves down the mound fast but it seems like he explodes with his hips down there while holding back his lead leg. So do you guys think it’s a hip issue or a lead leg issue? Also, would you say your already driving with your back leg and that’s what is making your hip lead and keep going or is it primarily and Nolan Ryan used to call is “a controlled fall” and then it leads into the drive and explosion.

Also, I’ve been thinking about this topic a lot in my head and I’m someone tentative to put it into work because I’m imagining myself gliding down the mound keeping my hips out in front and my lead leg back and then getting too far like that and I begin to catch myself with my lead leg instinctually rather than being able to explode into a throw. Once again, I haven’t been able to even come close to that on the mound but it keeps running through my head.


#7

Changing your mechanics is not easy and may hurt you. Your doing OK with your mechanics right now, its smooth, its just not great. There are many ways to pitch. What I like to do is imitate many different types of pitchers and try to figure out how they get there lower body power. This will help you better understand lower-upper body rhythm.


#8

In your video, look at how far your hips have moved forward between first forward movement and peak of knee lift - not very much. If you were to draw a vertical line through your posting foot and another line from your posting foot to your back hip at peak of knee lift, the angle between those two lines is called the energy angle. The best pitchers have energy angles of about 30 degrees. You have a smaller energy angle. Getting your hips moving forward sooner and faster will get you a bigger energy angle and give your more of the explosiveness you mentioned. But, if you try to make too big of an adjustment, you will feel like you have to catch yourself. So make small, incremental adjustments.


#9

side view what differences do you see?


#10

Lefty,

He’s moving down the mound a lot earlier and faster than me, like how Roger talked about the “energy angle” and how at the peak of his leg lift he’s already going towards home a lot more than me. And then obviously his intent is very good, very explosive and aggressive towards the plate.

Also I see his front landing leg is a lot more aggressive in straightening out and making his body like a catapult, I have a little flexion in mine, probably from lack of strength.

Anything I missed?


#11

[quote=“bcshall”]Lefty,

He’s moving down the mound a lot earlier and faster than me, like how Roger talked about the “energy angle” and how at the peak of his leg lift he’s already going towards home a lot more than me. And then obviously his intent is very good, very explosive and aggressive towards the plate.

Also I see his front landing leg is a lot more aggressive in straightening out and making his body like a catapult, I have a little flexion in mine, probably from lack of strength.

Anything I missed?[/quote]

Correct. The most important thing you said was intent. The front leg action is more a result of doing other things right. He isn’t trying to keep it firm, that just happens. Might be a strength issue, but probably not.

I think the bottom line is you don’t need to be making massive mechanical changes here, but take into account the stuff here and start trying to add in a little bit more intent in everyday catch play and off the mound. When you long toss really let it fly and try to drive just a little bit harder in the exct same way you already do. You already move down the mound using what appears to be the proper musculature, so just do it a little faster. Experiment with small things, starting with intent, but don’t go changing everything that isn’t broken. Been there, done that.

Start thinking long and hard about how you’re going to strengthen your body up to be as prepared as possible for your final high school season.

Let me know if you have any questions and as always feel free to PM me if you need to

Ben