This drill is recommended for pitchers sixteen (16) years of a age and older.
- After a warm up period -
Start on level ground and about fifty (50) feet from your catcher. Begin with your fastball at about fifty percent (50%) game speed. Locate your first delivery at location (5)
Take a short break and remember your locations with the greatest accuracy – there’s a reason for this variance in accuracy.
- Margins of Drift -
If you’re a right-handed pitcher pitching a fastball to a right-handed batter and you’re trying to hit the inside, position (4), but your Margin of Drift is very active, your pitch will more than likely end up at (3) or even (2). …. So long Mr. Rawlings…
So during your bullpen session, become aware of your Margin of Drift and why. Make any and all adjustments then, in the bullpen, and again when you’re fitting in on the mound.
- Working the Rubber -
Once you feel comfortable with your accuracy rate and tempo, if you’re a RH pitcher, move to the far left of the mound (your left) and start your location exercise all over again. If you’re a LH pitcher, mover to the far right of the mound (your right) and start your location exercise all over again. Now here’s the fascinating part of this drill - somewhere along that pitcher’s rubber you’re going to find the greatest accuracy for certain locations of your fastball, when your pivot foot is positioned at either (A), (b) and so forth. Therefore, your Margin of Drift has less impact on your accuracy, for certain locations when that pivot of yours is located at a certain spot on the rubber.
Now notice in our picture the graded markings in front of our catcher. Using the same movement locations along the rubber, watch how effective your breaking pitches are at certain spots on the rubber and how active your ball’s movement is.
- Summary -
Now all this has to have a pitcher who is well rested and ready for a day’s worth of serious training. In addition, the mound condition has to be reasonable with a surface that will allow adjustments and repeated performances that actually mean something to the pitcher and his/her pitching coach. Also, don’t go head long into something like this without a reasonable plan for breaks and rest. Take your time to note what you’re doing and why.