Marshall Pitching Motion - Arm Action

For those of your who are interested in the ideas of Dr. Mike Marshall, I recently put together a diagram that shows an overhead view of what his desired arm action looks like. I’d be interested in knowing whether this helps you understand what he is talking about.

Also, I have experimented throwing using this arm action and, once I got used to it, found that it works quite well.

Chris
This makes sense based on my reading and reading and reading and …

Now, how about a side view. Your video on your web site showing your using his mechanics doesn’t match at all what I get out of his writings.

Oh noooo… not the video. I think we have seen too much of that video. Can we see someone else with Dr. Marshall’s mechanics? Maybe a major leaguer or college player? I or we really do not want to see Chris throwing on wet grass on a cold day again.(just kidding).

Looks interesting and I am hoping we can see video or Professional or even college players. Chris?

baseballbum
Yes, video would be great. I’ve read Marshall’s description of the mechanics many, many times and still can’t imagine throwing like that. I must be missing something. The view from above that Chris drew isn’t bad but it’s the side view that I’d like to see now, at least his understanding of it.

Here you go…

Where can I find his video?

www.drmikemarshall.com

But you’ll have to call. The site’s a little old-fashioned and doesn’t take orders directly online.

so basically the hand stays in the same spot throughout the motion, does go to the side or anything and the arm makes adjustments according to this?

Yes. The idea is to keep the hand moving pretty much directly at the target (rather than off to the side).

Chris
Why is it that it is so difficult to get video of one of Marshall’s more skillful students demonstrating these mechanics??? Talk, talk, talk, …

Show me this video that demonstrates the safety aspect and also indicates the 95 - 100 mph velocity and the amazing movement that we keep hearing about.

Until any of this is shown, we’re all wasting our time!!!

Yes. The idea is to keep the hand moving pretty much directly at the target (rather than off to the side).[/quote]

What I see in the first (overhead view) diagram is that the hand/ball takes a direct path to the target but the body first moves to the left and then back to the right as the ball is thrown. I have a hard time thinking that is efficient.

In the second (side view) diagram, what I see is that in each step the ball alternates from being in line with the pitcher’s head to being raised above the head. Again, how can that be efficient? Also, in some steps the head is shown inline with the shoulders and in other steps the head appears above the shoulders. I think that makes the diagram confusing.

Hi Roger
His diagrams are consistent. The first of each numbered diagram, from above, shows the head in line, as it should. The second of each numbered diagram, from the side, shows the head above the shoulders, as it should. I found this confusing the first time I saw them both together. It might be nice to see all the overhead views together, then all of the side views together.

Ok, thanks for the explanation, DM. I think I got it now. The first diagram is strictly an overhead view but the second diagram is a composite of overhead and side views. Is that right?

If so, then my comment about the first diagram still stands. The head starts in alignment with the path of the ball, moves to the left and then moves to the right. It’s not clear from the diagram what the rest of the body is doing. How much of the body is involved in the sideways movement? It still seems inefficient - too much energy is being directed in a direction other than towards the target. The body should be a more stable base for the arm. Am I still missing something?

The problem is mostly guilt by association.

For whatever reason, many teams (stupidly or not) simply will not talk to a guy as soon as they learn that he has worked with Dr. Marshall regardless of how well he pitches. As a result, his pitchers are very nervous about having videos of them pitching posted in any public forum because they are concerned that they will be outed as a student of Dr. Marshall.

Given that I obviously have no professional ambitions (much less level of talent), that’s why I posted the video of me throwing. It’s stopgap until one of Dr. Marshall’s pitchers makes it to the big leagues.

Of course, that begs the question of whether that will ever happen.

Except for the possible exception of moneyball-driven organizations like the A’s, which look at guys using spreadsheets rather than their eyes, most organizations would try to “fix” a Marshall student after drafting him. That of course would both decrease his effectiveness and increase the risk he will be injured.

Yes.

What’s going on is that the pitcher is tilting their shoulders.

I may have exaggerated how much tilting occurs so as to keep the hand on the driveline.

Of course, it might not be physically possible to achieve a perfectly straight driveline. It may curve out and/or up some.

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]For whatever reason, many teams (stupidly or not) simply will not talk to a guy as soon as they learn that he has worked with Dr. Marshall regardless of how well he pitches.[/quote]Obviously they’re not pitching that well then. We keep hearing about how these mechanics result in movement that will amaze us.

What you’re saying basically is that people out there in the baseball world will see a pitcher throwing 90 mph with movement to bewilder and virtually no injury risk and they won’t talk to them!!! Sorry, but not even the baseball world is THAT stupid. Come on Chris, using that as the reason why we haven’t seen any proof or even video to show the mechanics is a cop out, in my humble opinion.

Have the Marshallites not entertained the radical idea that these guys just can’t compete with the others out there throwing 90 - 95? It looks to me like the reasons you noted are just very convenient for them.

[quote=“dm59”][quote=“Chris O’Leary”]For whatever reason, many teams (stupidly or not) simply will not talk to a guy as soon as they learn that he has worked with Dr. Marshall regardless of how well he pitches.[/quote]Obviously they’re not pitching that well then. We keep hearing about how these mechanics result in movement that will amaze us.

What you’re saying basically is that people out there in the baseball world will see a pitcher throwing 90 mph with movement to bewilder and virtually no injury risk and they won’t talk to them!!! Sorry, but not even the baseball world is THAT stupid. Come on Chris, using that as the reason why we haven’t seen any proof or even video to show the mechanics is a cop out, in my humble opinion.

Have the Marshallites not entertained the radical idea that these guys just can’t compete with the others out there throwing 90 - 95? It looks to me like the reasons you noted are just very convenient for them.[/quote]

I’m just saying that that’s the logic.

I’m not saying that it makes sense.

What you are saying is one reason why I think of myself as someone who finds Dr. Marshall’s ideas very interesting, but wouldn’t describe myself as a true believer.

[quote=“Chris O’Leary”]I’m just saying that that’s the logic. I’m not saying that it makes sense.[/quote]I’m with you there. Logic usually implies that it’s, well, logical. :lol:

[quote=“dm59”][quote=“Chris O’Leary”]For whatever reason, many teams (stupidly or not) simply will not talk to a guy as soon as they learn that he has worked with Dr. Marshall regardless of how well he pitches.[/quote]Obviously they’re not pitching that well then. We keep hearing about how these mechanics result in movement that will amaze us.

What you’re saying basically is that people out there in the baseball world will see a pitcher throwing 90 mph with movement to bewilder and virtually no injury risk and they won’t talk to them!!! Sorry, but not even the baseball world is THAT stupid. Come on Chris, using that as the reason why we haven’t seen any proof or even video to show the mechanics is a cop out, in my humble opinion.

Have the Marshallites not entertained the radical idea that these guys just can’t compete with the others out there throwing 90 - 95? It looks to me like the reasons you noted are just very convenient for them.[/quote]

DM,

From personal experience I can tell you that what Chris is saying about bias is quite accurate. I know two pitchers using Marshall’s mechanics who have thrown well in excess of 90 mph in pro tryouts, with extraordinarly movement on the ball and a pitch selection that will blow your socks off, and were not invited to throw to hitters. (One of these guys threw 95.)

Currently there’s another young man in the minors who, after altering Marshall’s mechanics enough to ‘disguise’ them, threw 97 mph last year. He posted a 1.79 ERA in 11 starts for a 6-2 record. Coaches put immense pressure on him to change in spite of his success. This spring coaches told him he had the best slider in camp. Unfortunately, altering his mechanics makes it impossible to throw a fastball that moves radically to the glove side, makes it impossible for him to throw a curve the way Marshall teaches it, and also destroys his sinker release. These ‘coaches’ are not very bright to eliminate half of his arsenal and force him to make mechanical alterations that also make it tougher to throw strikes.

Two weeks ago I was in Florida and watched my son throw 86-87 in a college tryout…and he was fatigued beyond belief when he started. The day before they were doing high speed film research and he threw 184 pitches in the space of about three hours, and for the ten days prior to that he was throwing 75 pitch bullpens every single day as part of his training regimen. He still managed high 80’s for the tryout, and I saw him throw four absolutely nasty screwballs in a row for strikes…at the end of the tryout. How hard do you think he will throw when he’s not tired?

No, I won’t post video of these guys and I won’t tell you their names. You’re welcome to think this is a cop-out. You’re mistaken. I’m not trying to be coy or adversarial, I’m simply realistic about the state of affairs in pro ball and I’m protective of my son. Personally I think it will take a team owner who has guts enough to stand up to ‘baseball guys’ and say, “We’re going to give something different a chance.” Owners generally have nothing to say about who plays. They sign checks.

Coach45


Chris,

Your overhead view diagrams are getting close with some minor (and critical) distinctions. The side view diagrams are way off. Among other things at the end of upper arm acceleration (elbow pointing at home plate) the elbow does not drop. Keep after it.

Coach45
As I’ve said before, show me the mechanics and provide some non-Marshall corroboration of the +90 mph delivery with this movement that will “blow your socks off” and I’ll be one of the most staunchest advocates, especially if it makes such a drastic reduction in throwing injuries. How could anyone not want that?

The problem here Coach is that we hear, on this board and others, about this but nobody can show it. It’s a completely pointless exercise to try to promote anything with talk alone. I’m not at all saying it’s untrue, just that it’s not tangible to any of us.

I respect your resolve to protect your son. I maintain, though, that it is fruitless to attempt to describe all of this in words alone. If I were to be able to actually see these mechanics in action, I would have a much better chance of understanding what you obviously are convinced about. Without video, we’re all just guessing at this amazing “secret”.