Pitching Mechanics for this 10 year old

Was interested in what the forum expertise might think of this 10U pitcher. Watched him pitch in a number of tournament games and the guy could really bring the heat. I slowed down the video to help make light of his pitching mechanics.

Thanks Pat.

Looks like an athletic kid.

I think he’s has some postural issues, a glove instability issue, and lacks momentum. Now, while a 10yo will usually lack the functional strength to do things perfectly, these issues can certainly be improved upon.

Ok, let’s add some details here…

Regarding the postural issues, this pitcher leans back (toward 3B) when he lifts his knee. After his stride legs starts to drop, he collapses his back leg and gets his upper half leaning to his left (toward 2B and away from home plate). His back leg then collapses rather significantly before he starts moving toward home plate.

Now, as I mentioned previously, this pitcher probably lacks the core strength to completely stabilize his upper half. But there are things he can do to improve the situation. First, I would have him bend his knees a bit and bend forward at the waist instead of standing straight up and down (which all of these little guys seem to want to do). This will put him into a posture where he has more strength to lift the knee without all the unwanted head movement. Also, having the knees bent a bit will reduce how much the back leg collapses and that will hopefully reduce/eliminate the lean back towards 2B.

Regarding the glove instability issue, after extending the glove out front leading up to front foot plant, he then lets the glove drop. This is very common with these little guys because of the weight of the glove. The ramifications of dropping the glove is that it usually causes an unwanted posture change and it often pulls the shoulders open early. And that steals velocity, reduces consistency, and puts more stress on the arm. Try to get him to keep the glove out front, to turn it over so the pocket faces his chest or face, and to bring his body to the glove. This will also put him in a better position to defend himself (especially his face) against a liner hit back at him.

I’d probably spend a fair amount of time working on these issues before worrying about the momentum issue I mentioned.

I agree 100% with Roger on the two main issues he has identified–the early postural instability and the weak glove side near release point.

Although this boy does use a glove that is too big for him, I’m starting to think that the very common flaw of loosely flopping the glove arm to the side near release point is far more than a matter of strength.

Because most young pitchers and inexperienced coaches are obsessed with what the throwing arm does, I think this problem is more one of neglect–kind of like, “Who cares what the glove side does…get it out of the way, it’s not throwing the baseball!”

I’ve seen adult coaches whose own poor mechanics included this same complete inattention to the glove side arm action “teaching” young kids to throw.

One additional point that I will speculate on–it looks to me as though this youngster may have been coached to “grab a handful of dirt” in his follow-through. Otherwise known as, “grab some grass”, this common advice is very poor, IMO. That is, it seeks to enforce a cookie-cutter type of postural accomodation in the follow-through which, if the rest of his delivery were optimal, would have taken care of itself.