Pitch Speed Ranges for 10, 11, 12's


#21

There are lots of variables and plenty of people have commented on the appropriate level of emphasis on velocity at this age. But, for what it’s worth - here are some scales I use to evaluate pitchers. I’m much more confident in the 12 y.o. and older numbers - don’t work with many 10 y.o.'s. But, I’ve gunned a lot of pitchers. These are JUGS speeds:

12 y.o.
67+ Outstanding
64-66 Very Good
61-63 Above Average
58-60 Average
57 and below - Below Average

11 y.o.
64+ Outstanding
61-63 Very Good
58-60 Above Average
55-57 Average
54 and below - Below Average

10 y.o.
60+ Outstanding
57-59 Very Good
54-56 Above Average
51-53 Average
50 and below - Below Average


#22

dbr, your saying you have “gunned” a lot of pitchers from 10-12 yrs old…what is your though process as to the importance of velocity at these ages, is it just a morbid curriosity, or is there something that these numbers are doing to improve the individuals pitching and future? Especially since you have enough to come up with data to give speed ranges etc. I am still totally perplexed by parents and coaches being so into velocity at those ages.

Are you saying that if you have a kid that is “Below average” at 10 he is somehow deficient and shouldn’t pitch. Or if a pitcher at 11 is “Outstanding” the coach should make that kid his #1 pitcher?

I just don’t get it.


#23

Fair questions. I wondered what kind of response that would get. As I said above, I work with mostly older pitchers - 90% of my work has been with 14-21 y.o.'s. I actually don’t remember ever “gunning” a 10 or 11 y.o. Those are extrapolations down from the ages that I work with most of the time. Thought I’d put them up for those who were expressing opinions to see what they looked like to other posters. I’ve worked with just enough 12 y.o. to feel confident in those numbers. And I said all that in my post.
So, my direct answer to your question is that I don’t think there is any place for an emphasis on radar readings in working with a 10 or 11 y.o. But, if I worked with a pitcher that young I might use one to measure improvement. I don’t think there would be anything wrong with that within the context of proper emphasis on arm health, solid mechanics, and command. I just left all those comments to other posters.
I think radar readings become appropriate and useful at about the age of 14. That’s when players are getting ready to try out for their high school baseball program. And I do believe that maximizing velocity without neglecting arm health, mechanics, and command is a worthy goal. At every level of baseball, the hardest throwers are usually the best pitchers. And there’s no question that velocity is the ticket to the next level - whatever that level is.
So, I probably should have only posted the 12 y.o. numbers. I don’t think anyone who has seen me work with pitchers would see anything morbid - but, I understand the comment.


#24

This is a very interesting thread. My son is in 10U travel ball and he just turned 11 years old. His 4SFB has been clocked as high as 66MPH. I believe his average to be around 61-63MPH or so. Last year he was throwing in the high 50’s. I do not make a habit out of checking his speed, but he of course thinks its great. He is very explosive and has good overall mechanics. Recently he has been throwing a devestating circle change that has been very effective on a 1-2 to 0-2 count. His change up is probably 10 to 13mph slower than his fastball! We have been working on a knuckle and split finger. BTW, he is throwing almost as fast as his old man now! The only difference is he has much better control that I do :lol:


#25

Not sure if this additional information will help this thread, or just make things more confusing.

An orthopedic surgeon, Michael J. Axe, reported his study of velocity vs age for young throwers and Brent Strom kindly forwarded it to me several years ago.

Dr. Axe reported an average velocity for each age, 8 - 14, and he reported velocities for each age that were 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 standard deviations from the average. Note, about 34% of pitchers at a given age are expected to be in the 1sd group, about 14% in the 2sd group, about 2% in the 3sd group, about 0.1% in the 4sd group, and the 5sd number is expected from only about 1-in-a-million throwers in a given age group.

Axe’s numbers are in this order: Age: ave. vel., 1,2,3,4,5 std dev’s:

8: 40, 43, 47, 50, 54, 57

9: 43, 47, 51, 55, 59, 63

10: 46, 50, 54, 58, 62, 66

11: 48, 52, 56, 60, 64, 68

12: 50, 55, 60, 65, 70, 75

13: 54, 59, 64, 69, 74, 79

14: 60, 66, 72, 78, 84, 90

Note, this study does not take into account the increasing concentration of “above average” throwers into the pitching ranks as age increases–so experienced baseball people will undoubtedly perceive the reported average velocity for 13 yos and 14 yos, maybe also 12 yos, as being “too low”. However, that probably reflects a tendency of 1sd, 2sd, and 3sd throwers to stay in the game as pitchers, while average and below average throwers may tend to quit baseball altogether (after all, all positions require some throwing, and it gets harder and harder to compete at higher and higher levels of play).


#26

Interesting study and results la thanks for sharing.


#27

[quote=“laflippin”]Dr. Axe reported an average velocity for each age, 8 - 14, and he reported velocities for each age that were 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 standard deviations from the average. Note, about 34% of pitchers at a given age are expected to be in the 1sd group, about 14% in the 2sd group, about 2% in the 3sd group, about 0.1% in the 4sd group, and the 5sd number is expected from only about 1-in-a-million throwers in a given age group.

Axe’s numbers are in this order: Age: ave. vel., 1,2,3,4,5 std dev’s:

12: 50, 55, 60, 65, 70, 75

13: 54, 59, 64, 69, 74, 79

14: 60, 66, 72, 78, 84, 90

[quote]

Interesting that at age 12, where the top LL pitchers are at, that 75 is considered to be 1:1,000,000. More interesting is how many 5’-+ travel ball kids all think they throw harder and better than the 12 year old who throws 75 and stills plays LL.

Going off of this chart, am I to understand the 12 year old who throws 75 will be hitting 90 entering high school at 14? I can see 79 at 13. But 90 at 40 is freaking scary to think about.


#28

How did this Dr. Axe come up with these speeds?

Did he actually observe and accurately gun an 8 year old throwing 57?

Did he actually observe and accurately gun a 9 year old throwing 63?

I find these speeds implausible. I’ve seen many hard throwing 8 and 9 year olds and they don’t come close to these speeds. I say bunkum.


#29

south paw,

You should probably re-read the discussion of these numbers more carefully before dismissing Axe’s work as bunkum.

An 8 yo throwing 57 mph would be in the 5th std. deviation group for all 8 year olds…i.e., the statistical chances of this are literally 1-in-a-million.

Same for a 9 yo throwing 63, this is 5 standard deviations from the norm for a 9 yo…again, 1-in-a-million.

I think the public doesn’t really begin to see tangible evidence for Axe’s statistical estimates until 12 - 13 yo…that’s when the LL WS is televised, with radar readings: Although it is rare, 75 - 78 mph has certainly been seen at this level, which would put those pitchers into the 4th or 5th standard deviation for their age, assuming that they are true 12 - 13 yos.

None of this suggests that a thrower who is in an elite group, say at age 10 yo, will go on to be an elite thrower at 11, 12, 13, or any other age. In fact, the odds are probably against elite-performing youth in the long run because “surprise, surprise” hard throwers tend to get over-used at all ages, especially at young ages where the coaches are often not very well informed about the dangers of chronic stress to the developing skeleton.


#30

la,

I did read the post on Dr. Axe’s numbers. I’m simply asking whether he in fact observed and recorded the speeds he mentions - or is he just determining what the standard deviations would be based on a statistical pool of players?

My memory of statistics from college is that one can determine standard deviations in the abstract without actually observing them. For instance, a statistician might determine with mathematical certainty that a human being who weighs 2,000 pounds would be in the 34th standard deviation from the norm - but that doesn’t mean anyone weighs 2,000 pounds, or that the statistician observed and weighed a 2,000 pound person. It just means that 2,000 pounds is 34 standard deviations from the norm.

So, did Dr. Axe actually and accurately observe and gun an 8 year old throwing 57 and a 9 year old throwing 63? Or is his point that those speeds, if ever attained, would be 5 standard deviations from the norm? Saying that a speed is X standard deviations from the norm is very different from observing and recording one.


#31

re: “I find these speeds implausible. I’ve seen many hard throwing 8 and 9 year olds and they don’t come close to these speeds. I say bunkum.”

----It was this part of your discussion that I reacted to, south paw. You have not seen 1 million 8 yos throw but, based on your experience, you find the speeds expected for the 5th std. deviation group of 8 yos to be implausible.

The nonsensical extreme of posing a 34th std. dev. group is really beyond the scope of this discussion and perhaps just offered up to make Axe’s conclusions seem ridiculous?

Again, the LL WS is nationally televised every year and the rare individual shows up in that venue who appears to meet the 4th or 5th std. dev. group for his age. There is no obvious and publicly verifiable way to find out if there are 1-in-a-million 8 yo throwers who can hit 57 mph…however, Dr. Axe is still active in research and can be contacted by interested parties.

If you are really serious, I suggest that you google his name (Dr. Michael J. Axe) retrieve his publicly available contact information, then ask him your questions directly.


#32

la,

You’re right. I haven’t seen 1 million 8-year-olds throw. But neither has Dr. Axe, or you, or anyone else.

All I’m asking is for evidence that there is an 8-year old who throws 57 and a 9-year-old who throws 63. Statistical extrapolations of standard deviations from the norm is not evidence that such pitchers exist.

My example of the 2,000 pound person being multiple standard deviations from the norm had a purpose: to show that describing such person in statistical terms does not establish the existence of such person. In fact none exist.

Perhaps this will make more sense: a statistician might tell you that a MLB pitcher who throws 120 is 8 standard deviations from the norm. But no such pitcher exists!

All I’m saying is that I’ll need to see evidence of 8 and 9 year olds throwing 57 and 63 before I’ll believe it. 63 is good velocity for the Little League World Series, where the best of the best play, where the pitchers are 12 and 13 (and probably more biologically). I simply don’t believe a 9 year old can come close to that.


#33

re: “Perhaps this will make more sense: a statistician might tell you that a MLB pitcher who throws 120 is 8 standard deviations from the norm. But no such pitcher exists!”

—Perhaps not, but this example is not so far out of the bounds of human possibility that it is absolutely foolish.

And, 4 or 5 std deviations from the norm in any given set is very, very unusual performance but not expected to be impossible. If you choose a group for which there is not good, publicly verifiable data, like 8 and 9 yo throwers it is pretty easy to dig your heels in and “call bunkum”. In fact, if someone posted here that their 8 yo had been gunned at 57 mph, you’d be right to be very skeptical…an unverifiable claim isn’t worth much.

But, if you’re just arguing that the 4th and 5th std deviation groups for any young age-matched throwers is all bunk because it predicts low but tangible numbers of unusual performers at every age…then you don’t need to look further than the 12 and 13 yo groups–for whom some very unusual velocity numbers have been seen publicly and fit into the 4th and 5th std deviation groups of Axe’s table.

So, your “impossible” example of an MLB pitcher throwing 120 mph…

Glen Gorbous, a Canadian baseball pitcher is credited with the world’s longest throw of a baseball, a feat which was accomplished in 1957 and apparently still stands…allowed 6 running steps he threw a baseball 446 feet. On page 105 of “The Physics of Baseball” Robert Adair estimates that Gorbous must have achieved a muzzle velocity (i.e., peak velocity, which is what most radar guns detect) of at least 115 mph to achieve that distance.

Granted, that is not a pitch but a throw and with a running start. The fastest known muzzle velocities from the mound…105 - 107 mph, numbers in the 5th - 6th standard deviation group. Not 120 mph, but not so far away that it seems absolutely humanly impossible to ever achieve that number by anybody anytime…

So, my question for you is: Since there are verifiable examples of 5th std dev performers of a given activity among several age groups (by definition they are rare performers among groups for which there is lots and lots of data)…why do you find it so hard to believe that the 5th std dev has members at 8 yo or 9 yo? The expected rarity of 5th std dev performance among these ages is ultimately confounded by the lack of publicly recorded data for them (I’m glad of that, personally)…but, by definition in a world now populated by 7 billion people the 5th std dev group for any particular endeavor is really never out of the question.


#34

JUst out of curiousity since i would have to agree with the critics here…are we talking about one out of the 1 million pitchers or one of the million persons here?


#35

I am totally agree with what you said,but my English is poor, sometiomes I don’t know how to express my feeling,I just want to make some friends who can help me in my English and share the happiness with each other.


http://www.mmolive.com/ and http://www.mmohome.com are good places for you to enjoy more happy


#36

The speeds are reachable.

Two nine year old kids off the same team hit 59 and 57 off the mound after not throwing for about a month. There is another kid that is capable of approaching those same numbers. That is just a single .500 AAA USSSA team in the Kansas City area.

There are many others of the same age that can approach those numbers too.


#37

[quote]The speeds are reachable.

Two nine year old kids off the same team hit 59 and 57 off the mound after not throwing for about a month. There is another kid that is capable of approaching those same numbers. That is just a single .500 AAA USSSA team in the Kansas City area.

There are many others of the same age that can approach those numbers too.[/quote]

Reachable yes, in the 5th Std. deviation. To have two, potentially three kids on the same .500 AAA team is highly suspect.


#38

Turn, I agree, so many over do the numbers and still many others think the numbers on their Bushnell Radar guns are accurate, I have seen my son on a Bushnell at 90 and 80-82 on a Stalker. I have also seen him on a Juggs gun at 80 and 77 on a Bushnell. Maybe a team is spending $500 for a Stalker but highly unlikely.


#39

[quote=“Turn 22”][quote]The speeds are reachable.

Two nine year old kids off the same team hit 59 and 57 off the mound after not throwing for about a month. There is another kid that is capable of approaching those same numbers. That is just a single .500 AAA USSSA team in the Kansas City area.

There are many others of the same age that can approach those numbers too.[/quote]

Reachable yes, in the 5th Std. deviation. To have two, potentially three kids on the same .500 AAA team is highly suspect.[/quote]

So you’re saying you don’t trust the gun’s numbers?


#40

The numbers were taken at a training facility that included kids from different teams. I do not know what type of gun they use but I googled images for radar guns and it appears to be the stalker. However, I can’t say that for sure.