Pitching in games back 2 back days

I’m 28… We play double headers saturday after friday night games and nothing during the week…

I threw around 80-100 pitches friday night, then in relief on Sat. afternoon I threw around 50 more pitches…

I wasn’t that sore on Saturday, so I gave it a go, and did all right…

On Sunday I was dead, all over soreness, but I expected that…

My team is pretty thin on pitching… I think this will probly be status quo for the summer: me having to pitch in back-to-back days, then resting all week…

Any thoughts? dramatic warnings? Stories?

… remember, I’m 28, never had any serious arm trouble…

I hope you pay a lot of attention to conditioning your arm.

I also hope that you don’t throw 100% all of the time.

what kind of arm conditioning?

I’ve been working out, throwing on the side since late last fall…I think my arm strength is where it should be at this point…

For now, during the season, I think I should just rest it between appearances…

UPDATE: It’s now Tuesday, and I just got a littel lingering soreness in my right lat, right below and to the back of my right arm pit…

I expect I’ll be perfectly fine for Fridays and Saturdays games…

Does anyone think this is a ridiculous schedule??

I was shocked the “coach” (we don’t really have a coach, per say, it’s a “mens league”) wanted me to go in the game on Saturday (after Friday nights 100 pitch performance)…

If you have access to an anatomy book look at the drawings of the back of the shoulder (posterior). Specifically look at the difference between the Latissimus Dorsi and Teres Minor. If you follow through by pulling your arm across the front of your body I doubt that your soreness is in the lat.

The Teres Minor muscle is very small. If you are decelerating your arm as described above this small muscle is doing most of the work. Very likely, if you keep up the pace of throwing back to back days you are going to do substantial damage, loose time from work, pay medical bills, etc.

Talk to ‘coach’ before your next game and tell him that under no circumstances will you pitch on successive days again. Playing as an amateur for fun is not worth playing with fire, and no type of conventional training can prevent what is coming.

You could start throwing 70% knuckleballs if you want to pitch back to back days. Or start throwing underhand softball style. Otherwise you will really destroy your arm going back to back days.

Also: If it is just a “Men’s League” for fun, why didn’t somebody else step up to pitch?

hmmm… yeah… it is pretty ridiculous… I’m only going one game from now on … I just needed to hear it from someone else … Thing is, I love to pitch so much it kills me to turn down a chance to do it as much as possible…

Regarding the soreness I felt below my armpit and to the back … are you saying this is bad, that this is not just normal soreness… Or are you saying that that it simply isn’t the lat and I am just mis-identifying my muscle groups???

Theoretically, you could pitch a few innings each in back to back days (assuming you are well-conditioned).

But to start one day and then go long the next is crazy.


Glad to hear that you’re going to back it off. I understand how hard it is to turn down opportunities…even when it’s the right thing to do.

If your soreness is in the lat it’s probably not a big deal, but my point is that it’s not likely to be the lat. More likely it’s the Teres Minor and chances are high that you’re doing irreversible damage pitching the way you were.

It’s important to distinguish between these two muscles (and the locations of their tendons) and I was suggesting you make certain you know the difference. They are in close proximity to each other and unless you know the difference and can properly diagonse the origin of the soreness you are playing with fire.

Have fun and let us know how it goes. I also suggest that you modify your followthrough so that you refrain from pulling your arm hard across your body and let it ‘finish’ more out front.

Hey, I looked on an anatomy chart… I think the soreness is either in the Teres Major/Minor (one’s right on top of the other, both seem rather small) or the Serratus anterior…

any thoughts on the Serratus anterior??

In any case, yes, I do follow through bringing my arm down, over near the upper thigh of my plant-leg/glove-side leg …

What do you mean by following through with the arm out front? I always figured it’s good to bring the arm back the other way so as to give it a complete, long ranging motion, a long ‘come down’ deceleration path…

Can you or someone post a picture of what a better “out front” follow through path is for the arm???

Given what you described, if the pain is more toward the back side of the shoulder it’s probably the Teres Minor because that’s where the tendon inserts into the upper arm bone. If the pain is in on the front side of the shoulder, that’s where the Teres Major attaches (among others). (The Teres Major helps rotate the upper arm inwardly while the Teres Minor is an outward rotator…two different actions.) Do you understand how muscles in general work in pairs?

When you look at the anatomy book pay particular attention to where the muscle’s tendon inserts into the upper arm bone (Humerus). Most of the injuries occur closer to the tendon insertion rather than out in the belly of the muscle.

I’ll try to come up with a reference for you to look at when I have time later this evening. When you talk about a long range of motion when decelerating the arm I believe you are describing a commonly accepted myth. When you understand that by taking your arm laterally across your body you are lengthening the Teres Minor beyond its capacity to apply force while you continue to inwardly rotate your pitching shoulder you will understand why this is a bad idea (regardless of the fact that many, many pitchers do so). Any time a muscle is at it’s maximum length and then you apply sudden force to it, what do you think happens? Watch a pitcher carefully and notice that the arm suddenly snaps back at the end of followthough. How does this pertain to our discussion in light of what I just described?

Additionally, if you were to look at high speed film of the pitching motion, you would see that (after release) when the arm tracks across the body and downward, gravity actually causes the arm to reaccelerate slightly rather than slow down. If you are willing to accept these statements as fact you will then understand the need to find another more efficient, anatomically sound way to decelerate the arm.

(Edited for correction)

The pain is more in the back, not in the front… but note that I hesitate to call it “pain” as I would characterize more as soreness; a soreness I’ve forever cevome accustomed to feeling the day aftre pitching …

you make a lot of sense…especially with the gravity re-acceleration bit and the way pitchers snap there arm back after follow through… from the way you describe it, I can only conclude that pitching a baseball with intnesity is a health hazard … which it pretty much undeniably is, no?

I was just looking at some images… Kazmir and CLemens bring their arms across their body…

check out pedro’s follow through here:


and also here:


He brings his arm over and down to the glove side knee but it’s not really going across his chest because it seems like he’s rotated at his waist enough to keep up with his arms whip… see what I mean? … is this ideal?

While there is a subjective difference between ‘pain’ and ‘soreness’ both tell you that you somehow exceeded your bodies capacity, and both are warning signs that tell you to do something differently.

Without seeing what happens on either side of still images it’s impossible tell exactly what is happening with Pedro’s followthrough. The fact that he seems to finish ‘lower’ certainly seems to indicate that something is different. I’m aware that he missed most of the 2001 season with a rotator cuff injury, but I don’t know the specifics. It would be interesting to compare mechanical differences from before and after this injury. I also know that he has had hip problems associated with pitching.

For as long as I’ve been around ball (over 40 years) I have always heard people say that, “Overhand throwing is an unnatural act.” So much so that I accepted it as gospel. Based on what I have learned over that last three years I think this statement is untrue.

What would you think of someone who can pitch with serious intensity every single day, seven days per week, for over two years without structural pain? I just returned from seeing my son in Florida, and this is exactly what he has done (and continues to do). After throwing 184 maximum intensity pitches in the space of two hours, on one day during a research session, I saw him throw in a college tryout the next day, topping at 86-87 mph. And all of this after throwing ten straight days of 72 pitch bullpens (maximum intensity). When he comes out of his current training regression he will throw even harder (and his velocities already exceed those of when he was drafted in 2003).

He has spent the last two years learning a completely different throwing mechanic. His arm drives quite close to straight forward, and decelerates pointing very close to straight at home plate. So, do I think that high intensity baseball pitching is a health hazard? No…only if we keep throwing the way we currently see it done.

I will be happy to write more about this if you care to read. Send me your e-mail address and I’ll send you a clip of something different.


yeah… I’m interested to see what you mean by decelerating out in front towards the plate … from the sound of it I can only picture someone cutting their follow through short, or stopping their arm right after release … that’s pretty impressive about your son throwing so much … sort of brings us back to the start of this thread being about going on back to back days … I’m tempted to think ‘if he can do it I can do it’ … but certainly he is more advanced and invested in pitching than I am at 28 and playing only on weekends … you can reach me here anrst33@yahoo.com.

Below is an example of what NOT to do.

In this case it’s Andy Pettitte, who has had problems with his Teres Minor…

Notice how his arm is tightly wrapped around and across his body.

One of the reasons his arm does this is because he pretty much leaves his pitching arm side leg behind on the rubber (notice how it’s sticking straight out behind him and pointing toward 2B). This limits how much his hips and thus his shoulders can keep rotating and causes his arm to wrap tightly around his body.

The alternative is to keep the pitching arm side knee moving forward so that it finishes in front of the glove-side knee. This allows the hips and shoulders to keep turning and increases the distance over which the arm can decelerate.

I believe Chris is correct. (However the damage is to the tendon, not the muscle.) In addition to damaging the back of his shoulder by following through like this, look at his right knee. Completely hyperextended. And what do you think he is doing to his right hip joint when he bends forward like this while twisting severely? And…how about the lower right back?