Lost velocity from practice to game


#1

my 12 yr son pitched his first games this weekend (2 innings the first game" no hits). i have been gunning him at home off a mound at about 62 and very accurate locating pitches when i clocked him during the game he was in the 54 mph range. he also looked like he was throwing from his ear instead of reaching back he came in with runners on and i think it was his way of going quicker to the plate . . he is also the kid we put in when we need strikes and that is what his coach tells him just throw us strikes.My question is this how do i deal with a coach telling him to throw strikes when i want to build velocity. he had 2 strike outs in one inning both with really nice curveballs on 0-2 counts Coach calling the pitch. Dont get me wrong i like the curve but i would perfer him to get them out with the 62 mph fastball he has been throwing at home where did it go and how do i get him to throw hard during the game


#2

My thought is why isn’t he throwing hard on the curveball, I really dont feel that the arm speed etc should change fastball/change up/curve ball so him building velocity shouldn’t really change one pitch to another. With respect to what to call, fastball vs curveball, does he have the option to shake off a pitch if he wants to? If yes then he needs to know what he wants to throw when, my kid has been shaking off pitches since he was 11 and the coaches have learned that he is going to get what he wants.

The other question of how to throw hard, that is up to him to let it go, there are situations that will get him confident about throwing hard, there will be a time when the batter just keeps fighting off his pitches and the 62mph fastball is all that will get him and he will need to let it go.

On another note, and I don’t mean to be a problem but why are you so wrapped up in how hard your son throws, I mean if he can dominate like this then what’s the deal. I do agree that if he is changing his arm swing then that could be a mechanical issue that needs to be addressed but he’s 12 I wouldn’t worry about the speed till 14…that will give one year to get him up to speed for high school.


#3

[quote=“buwhite”]My thought is why isn’t he throwing hard on the curveball, I really dont feel that the arm speed etc should change fastball/change up/curve ball so him building velocity shouldn’t really change one pitch to another. With respect to what to call, fastball vs curveball, does he have the option to shake off a pitch if he wants to? If yes then he needs to know what he wants to throw when, my kid has been shaking off pitches since he was 11 and the coaches have learned that he is going to get what he wants.

The other question of how to throw hard, that is up to him to let it go, there are situations that will get him confident about throwing hard, there will be a time when the batter just keeps fighting off his pitches and the 62mph fastball is all that will get him and he will need to let it go.

On another note, and I don’t mean to be a problem but why are you so wrapped up in how hard your son throws, I mean if he can dominate like this then what’s the deal. I do agree that if he is changing his arm swing then that could be a mechanical issue that needs to be addressed but he’s 12 I wouldn’t worry about the speed till 14…that will give one year to get him up to speed for high school.[/quote]

thats a complicated question my son went 6-2 last year pitching against pretty good teams. He also plays up a year so he naturally lags a few mph slower then most of the pitchers we face.we just played in a tourney in louisville against a team that threw smoke honestly they had 3 pitchers that were consistently over 70 mph.we lost 2-1 in the last inning with a walk off double that was hit on our hardest thrower (who has no movement).we pitched 5.5 inning of no hit ball with 3 different pitchers one of the best 12 yr old games ive ever watched I dont personally think he has to throw that hard, but this is a statement he made to me at the beginning of practice in november I am tired of the coach calling joeblow our ace pitcher i pitch just as good as joeblo, this year i am going to be the ace. so he worked hard on gaining 4 mph from 58 to 62 so i hate to see him not use what he worked hard to develop.My oldest son threw smoke 87 mph as a sophmore and was usually the fastest pitcher at whatever tourney we played with no arm issues ever till he got to hs and they turned him into a junkballer so iam not that big of a fan of the curveball. it scares me, my 12 yr old supposedly throws it correctly (if thats possible). I also know his curveball has changed in the last month it was an average 12 yr old cuveball till about 3 weeks ago and now the bottom falls out of it. Ive talked to him about what he is doing different he says nothing or says he doing a better job of staying on top of it and videoed him to see whats different and havent picked anything up. but something is different! i guess i just think it safer for him to throw hard and hits spots then to throw the curve. I also believe the harder your fastball is the more effect your changeup can be. I have talked with him about shaking it off he just lacks the balls to do it hes afraid if he shakes it he will have to answer to the coach. coaches also tend to fall in love with 12 yr olds that throw nasty curves they look cool. I get more of a kick out of seeing batters swing after the ball hits the catchers glove on a hard fastball. kids talk they dont talk about the average guy throwing and hitting his spots the talk about the kid with the blazing fastball or big curve. its a confidence thing for him do i move him down and let him play 11 yr old and do really well and gain confidence or do you let him continue playing up and have him doubt himself every once in awhile


#4

slowbutaccurate, here are my thoughts about future, “every thing is just practice till they are paying you”, I think that college is paying you since you get an eduation as part of the deal. SO whatever it takes to become a better rounded pitcher, a smarter pitcher, a pitcher with a better understanding of the game…then that is what you should do. That “ACE” on the team is a great carrot for your son, if he doesn’t become the “ACE” this year, then maybe he earns it next year or the next…it’s the effort and improvement that will get him to the next level.

If he is really looking at high school and past I still think that working location, location, location is the right thing to do. My son joined a new team this year and of course he wasn’t looked at as the ACE, but he is working at defining that spot for himself, you know it doesn’t matter if the coaches kid is called the ACE it’s what the team looks at you as. He also needs to have the confidence to shake off that coach…if he wants the top he’s gotta act like it in all cases not just in mph, it’s maturity too. BTW this was the first year my son ever intentionally tried to add velocity and even though his velocity raised every year.

Careful this sounds a bit like living vicariously. This will cloud your mind as to what to do to help him become the best he can be. He needs your help to move forward into the future and you have to look at things a bit unemotionallly to make the best choices.

Who cares what the kids say!!!

I dont think this year really matters but I would consider him playing 12U again next at atleast the AAA level (don’t know what system you play in) since at 13U is when a huge physical change happens to many of the players and it would be a good time to make a move, then play 3 years 12U, 13U and 14U at his right age prior to being a freshman and playing high school ball.

Good Luck!!!