Key to throwing strikes?

What are your thoughts? Is it mechanical? Is it mental? Or is their a magic bullet?
Jeff Hunter

its simple really. Have solid mechanics and stop thinking so much. Know what you want to do before hand, and be ready to do it.

the key to throwing strikes is throwing the ball over and around the plate most of the time. it’s that simple. there are 2 ways to do it. 1, if you have the touch in your thumb and fingers you can set up inside or outside. you have this naturally (like maddux) or develop it like koufax. he had to gear it down just a little to develop feel.

the other way is to have the catcher set up down the middle and throw the ball to the middle of the plate and let it run to one side or the other. if you can’t do this after consistent hard work, pitching may not be your thing. if you can’t throw your fastball over the plate 70 to 80% of the time, you will have a hard time in high school and beyond. find a way to throw the fastball over the plate with velocity or late movement.

Geez, thinking and mechanics are for the bullpen. It’s game time baby …be confident enough to turn it loose and not be concerned with the results !

[quote=“Jeff Hunter”]What are your thoughts? Is it mechanical? Is it mental? Or is their a magic bullet?
Jeff Hunter[/quote]

A lot of times, its the ump! :shock:

Doing anything well when under pressure is a combination of mental, physical (or physiological) and emotional preparation…and being a pitcher is about as pressure-filled as it gets in sports IMHO

In order to throw strikes, you have to have a certain physical dexterity/ability. If you have the knack of throwing the ball accurately, you then have to work on doing it well in pressure situations, at full exertion, with some gorilla 60 feet away looking to swat the next one back to Africa. That takes more than physical ability; it takes lots of repetition before game day - in the off season, too; it takes confidence and focus both before and during the game. (It helps the pitcher to throw strikes confidently if he has a solid defense behind him, too).

But some guys are just born with “it”. From the very first time they pick up a ball they throw hard and accurate. They throw strikes because thats what they do…and they may never understand how they do it, or why everyone else can’t. They go to the mound with the confidence of ignorance…not a bad thing in pitching or in marriage…and let fly. These folks are born with the “magic bullet” already loaded in their gun.

The Hose

great pitchers are also like great spouses in another way. they focus on the good things and forget the bad immediately after they learn from them. focus on creating mental pictures of good pitches, forget the bad ones (and we all make bad pitches). the secret is not making too many bad pitches in a row. that is called a trend in the wrong direction. do your trends in the right direction. let me give you an example.

first pitch change up for a strike, second pitch curveball for a strike. what are you going to throw the third pitch. why not go extra-hot fastball for a strike instead of wasting a pitch and coming back with another off-speed. if they hit it they probably aren’t going to hit it hard because they haven’t seen it (unless your homework says he is a dead fastball hitter and i would still throw it inside to tie him up (unless he stands way away from the plate). anyway if you are thinking along these lines, you are pitching not throwing and hoping.

[quote=“Jeff Hunter”]What are your thoughts? Is it mechanical? Is it mental? Or is their a magic bullet?
Jeff Hunter[/quote]

Assuming your mechanics are repeatable and fairly clean, it’s mental.

Don’t think. Focus on the glove and let it rip.

All of the above, and the most important thing is practice, practice, practice on the very thing you want to do. Pitching from a mound, at the correct distance, at game level intensity, at specific targets. The more specific your training, the better. The more you get away from the total environment you’ll be in during a game, the less effective the practice will be.

Just do it. Trial and error.

all ive ever done was stay looking right at the pocket of the mitt until i got to my follow through