Is Crossing Over on your Stride bad?

Does crossing over on your stride affect velocity and control due to not allowing the hips to rotate as well?

For an example: Jered Weavers stride

I have wondered this for awhile considering I do it, if it was a big mechanical fault or natural thing.

The more anyone looks and studies the human body, its ability to balance and adjust to all kinds of conditions, the more amazed one realizes just how magnificent that entity is. Somewhere along the line this man has practiced and progressed with this style, commanded his spot, took care of business.

On the other hand….this pitcher is NOT, repeat NOT, a man that I would like to – have – or ordered to coach. Why? Because his style is not something that I could observe and suggest this-or-that, once he … as we call it … “lost it’. These guys that perform in a “non-typical way” are a mind field for a man like me. Me, I’d call in sick.

In any event, along the lengthy road up the minors, somebody must have said to themselves and the front office bright lights – “looks good to me,” so there he is.

This crossover delivery is not user friendly to the lumbar and the spine. It also “pulls” violently on the pitching shoulder. Add to all that, this man and men like him are very weak against the push bunt/slug bunt on the third base side.

As far as commenting on ball control, pitch inventory, ERA’s or anything remotely close to pitching speak, as a coach, I look at it this way:
He’s not going to change – that’s a given. So, use the man until he self-destructs or even worse, then release the guy, then fill the slot with someone else.

Coach B.

Well…yes and no. On the one hand, Coach B. has a point. Under ordinary circumstances such a move might not be so good. BUT on the other hand—look at those sidearm pitchers. The majority of them will use what we call the crossfire: the pitcher, instead of going directly to the plate, will take a step toward either third base or first base, depending on whether one is a righthander or a southpaw, and whip around and deliver the pitch to the plate from that angle. So it looks to the batter as if the pitch is coming at him from either third or first base. Guys like Ewell Blackwell, for example. Spud Chandler. Jeff Nelson. I was one such—a true sidearmer who used the crossfire almost all the time. The fact is, the sidearm delivery is the easiest on the arm and shoulder, so a pitcher who uses that delivery is the least likely to develop any problems. And speed—velocity, if you will—doesn’t exactly figure into the equation, because there have been plenty of sidearmers, crossfire or no, who pitch(ed) in the mid- to high nineties. So if a sidearmer is injured, most likely it’s because a line drive hit him on the foot or ankle. (OUCH!} :slight_smile:

Jered Weavers does have a step like Zita described. In fact, Zita did a very nice job of detailing other things.

Jered Weavers does not sling or side arm. His overall delivery cycle lends itself to use his body in a coil-recoil motion - setting up his body by using his stride leg and plant. I’ve had pitchers like that in my clubs - don’t really care to see a man do that. Again, watching this man deliver gives me a chill, as his lower back and spine twists and crank. Side arm’s and submarine pitcher don’t cranck their spines like that - yes there are exceptions, but overall - no.

As I mentioned earlier, and have repeated on this web site - side arms and such can have their day and their supporters. I’m not able to do justice as a coach, nor do I know more about the body’s need for adjusting to things once a man like this asks… “coach, a little help here.”

Coach B.

Case in point for Coach B.

Okay, definitely something I will try to fix in my delivery. Was always curious what this does to you.

What are some of the causes for a crossover leg and foot plant with the stride leg?
 Leg lift is too high.
 Toe of the stride foot stays up through the entire pitching cycle.
 Pivot foot in hole that slants pivot toe down.
 Leaning too far over, bending at the waist, during leg lift.
 Pitching mounds with deteriorating fronts.
 Pitcher lacking sleep.
 Pitcher with sprain, muscle problems.
 Pitcher with anxiety, mood swings, lack of concentration.
 Pitcher trying too hard to make a pitch work, that won’t.
 Pitcher lacking basic training and instruction.
 Youthful immaturity, lack of physical fitness and conditioning.
Coach B.

I also think a non-explosive hip rotation can lead to that.

You can find plenty of cases of pitchers to stride to the arm side to varying degrees. But, as Coach B pointed out, those are pitchers who have been doing it a long time and have found a way to accomodate a mechanic that many would consider less than ideal.

For youth pitchers, however, striding to the arm side will often lead to a posture shift to the glove side which can affect control. Depending on the degree to which the stride deviates, the timing of the posture shift can vary and can lead to early shoulder rotation which can also affect velocity.

I don’t see a crossover stride as an inherently bad thing, as long as you can still get the hips to pop open. It adds some deception and I feel like it can actually encourage a rotational lower half (you have to rotate the hips to an even greater extent to not fall over)

we faced Danny Hultzen a couple years ago…he was throwing 95-96 on the black while commanding a slider as well…I don’t think striding across your body has to affect command…it shouldn’t if you still do the other fundamental things properly such as getting the hips open into landing while keeping the upper half closed

[quote=“Coach Baker”]What are some of the causes for a crossover leg and foot plant with the stride leg?
 Leg lift is too high.
 Toe of the stride foot stays up through the entire pitching cycle.
 Pivot foot in hole that slants pivot toe down.
 Leaning too far over, bending at the waist, during leg lift.
 Pitching mounds with deteriorating fronts.
 Pitcher lacking sleep.
 Pitcher with sprain, muscle problems.
 Pitcher with anxiety, mood swings, lack of concentration.
 Pitcher trying too hard to make a pitch work, that won’t.
 Pitcher lacking basic training and instruction.
 Youthful immaturity, lack of physical fitness and conditioning.
Coach B.[/quote]

Here is my take:

  1. At some point they look to the ground at the same spot they are landing in

  2. They line up from stretch/windup in that direction without knowing it.

  3. Their “intent” is to sink the ball

May be just condensing it to repeatability, all accuracy is a function of repeatable mechs…even the Livan Hernadez’ and El Duques of the world who feature more than one aspect of delivery…have to be able to repeat the mech…it’s imo WHY conditioning is as important as anything because as you tire, your mechs begin to and ultimely break down completely…accuracy is one of the many victims of this lack of preparation.

May be just condensing it to repeatability, all accuracy is a function of repeatable mechs…even the Livan Hernadez’ and El Duques of the world who feature more than one aspect of delivery…have to be able to repeat the mech…it’s imo WHY conditioning is as important as anything because as you tire, your mechs begin to and ultimely break down completely…accuracy is one of the many victims of this lack of preparation.[/quote]

No question about it…Great point. Don’t leave out feel :smiley:

Thank you for all the input guys, lots of good points.