You know, I’m not so sure your problem is mental. Reading your post, I was reminded of an incident involving a major league pitcher who was in a similar situation. He could go five or six innings and then suddenly collapse, and no one knew what to make of it—and then the manager got the idea of using this guy to protect close leads late in the game. It was simply a matter of this pitcher not being able to pitch a nine-inning game; as long as his arm stayed loose he was fine.
You might want to talk to your coach or manager about this—have him try using you as a late-inning relief pitcher, seventh inning on, and see what develops. No two pitchers are alike—we all know that—and there are pitchers who do well as starters and pitchers who are better off being used as relievers, whether middle of the game or late in the game. You might be one of these latter.
Also, you might want to take a close look at your mechanics. There might be something off-kilter there, and if such is the case something can be done to correct the problem. Good luck. :baseballpitcher:
Terrific! Go for it. The guy who was sitting on the bench and who said he would like to work with you for a bit obviously does know something—he could, for all we know, be a former or even an active major league pitcher. Work with him and listen to what he has to say. It could well pay big dividends in the near future. Reading this reminded me of the day I met Yankee pitcher Ed Lopat for the first time—I was nervous as a cat, because I didn’t know what to expect, but all I had wanted was to ask him something about the slider. What I ended up getting was not only expert instruction in how to throw the pitch but also some three and a half years of information, advice and assistance from him—something the value of which can never be measured.
Have fun—and maybe learn something. 8) :baseballpitcher: