I just wanted to get a discussion going on how much people think that lower body strength contributes to velocity production, and if so, what phases in the delivery require/benefit from this strength/explosiveness that is conventionally trained in baseball strength programs.
I will wait till others have chimed in before I share all my thoughts but something to think about is that there are plenty of skinny pitchers who can throw 95+ mph from a simple slide step…i.e. does the lower half really do anything besides carrying the body down the mound and unloading with proper timing to allow the core and upper half to do their job? I’m not saying the lower half is useless, but I’m genuinely curious as to why there is such an emphasis on loading hundreds of pounds on pitchers’ backs to train lower body strength and explosiveness when I have yet to see where this strength is used in a high level delivery
The best argument I’ve heard is that strong legs are necessary for knee stability, and training heavy squats will also strengthen the low back as well, two areas which need to be stable during the throwing motion. The question there is, how much strength is really necessary to achieve this stability, and weighing the risk/reward of highly technical (usually done as max effort) lifts like hang cleans and squats for pitchers.