Before I start I just want to get a few things out there. I know you have to have a decent fastball to throw a knuckler. I have a good fastball that I can consistently throw for strikes. I throw from varying 3/4 angles (from high-to-low), and have experimented with a knuckler before. It is highly difficult to throw, but if I practice this pitch, I believe I can master it. I’ve actually caught a bit of knucklers in the past, and wow, was it hard. I have a few things I would like to share about my past experiences with this pitch. I throw off the seams of the ball. Yeah, I know this is a bit weird and uncommon, but it feels right for me. I don’t bother with keeping my wrist stiff. This is another thing that might be uncommon as well. I have limited success with the “stiff wrist” thing, and learned that if you push your fingers out as hard as you can, you can have success. So enough on my part, let me here your input on throwing the knuckler, and what I should do to improve it.
Do you mean your fingertips are in the seams? Or that you keep them off of the seams? It is hard to say what you’re saying.
Personally, I like digging into the leather, rather than the seams, but I started by throwing them from the seams.
For a while, I experimented with a floppy wrist, with an extremely hard flick of the fingers, but it’s just not consistent enough for me, one wrong move and you get 10+ rotations, whereas with a stiff wrist you might screw up and still keep it to 2 rotations, which can still be okay if it is forward rotation. Keep in mind what your mistakes will look like throwing a knuck, a floppy wrist can lead to a flat meatball that’s gonna get hit 500ft. a stiff wrist will usually lead to more top spin which doesn’t take away from the big drop off the table at the end of the pitch (which is the most important part, forget about the dancing at first). Niekro even preferred to have about a half rotation or a full rotation forward at times.