Playing With Other Slots

Question guys, have any of you ever played with other arm slots? What was your success and thoughts?

For example, my natural slot is submarine, really a LOW sidearm, not like Chad Bradford for example.

We had a Bullpen yesterday for a game today and I thought I’d see how you over the toppers did it.

Well, I threw hard and wild (even when I came straight over the top like Pettite I couldn’t get my pitches down). At one point I was so concerned with my accuracy I thought to myself if I had to throw over the top I might as well throw like I would in the field.

That was my most recent experience doing something different how about you guys?

welcome to the lerning curve when you change a major pitching mechanic. if you can find the plate trowing down under that can be special. usually you get really nice movement

You should stay with your natural arm slot, what feels most comfortable for you and enables you to pitch effectively. I have seen and heard of too many instances where a pitcher changed his arm slot—often because a coach insisted on it, for whatever reason—and the results were nothing short of disastrous.
I had a pitching coach, many moons ago—an active member of the Yankees’ Big Three rotation—who firmly believed that every pitcher has a natural motion and worked to help said pitcher make the most of it. I was a natural sidearmer, not much on speed but with a good arsenal of breaking stuff and the control and command to go with it—you could well have called me a “snake-jazz” pitcher—and I used the crossfire extensively, much to the consternation of opposing hitters who never knew when I would use that move. You might remember my coach—his name was Ed Lopat, and he specialized in beating the Cleveland Indians to a pulp—and he recognized my natural delivery and helped me use it to full advantage. From him I learned the ins and outs of strategic pitching, the mental and psychological aspects of the game, and the killer slider I called “Filthy McNasty” (because that was exactly what it was). It was my best pitch!
So I say, stick with your natural delivery and don’t let anyone mess with it. :slight_smile: :baseballpitcher:

Yep, sure do. Threw three innings today, gave up one run (unearned) 1K, tons of grounders.

I can pretty much hit my spots throwing sub, compared to my over the top adventures it’s almost magical as I don’t actually think about it… My body just does it.

IMHO, sideramers and submariners don’t have enough great, widely-discussed role models to look up to…even though you could easily make the case that they are highly valued pitchers at the upper levels of baseball.

The ‘over-the-top’ boys have their Koufax’s, Hoffman’s, Lincecum’s to look at and think, “I want to be just like that guy”.

Sidearmers and submariners do have their iconic figures…in modern times they are generally relievers, not starters:

Look at the movement this guy got on his pitches:

Hi, flippin—I don’t know whether you remember Spud Chandler, but he pitched for the Yankees in the thirties through 1947. That guy was one of the great sidearmers. I saw him pitch a few times in '47, and he was unbelievable. When I discovered that I had a natural sidearm delivery I said to myself, this is it, that’s how I’m going to do it. Funny, what came attached to that delivery—a nice little curve ball, and I figured, well, I’ve got one, let me work with it a bit and see what I can do with it.
I’ve heard some people say that most sidearmers are relief pitchers. Not so. Quite a few starters have made a nice go of it with that delivery—more power to them. :slight_smile:

No, sorry, Zita, I didn’t know anything about Chandler before your comment (although I looked him up in the Neyer/James Guide to Pitchers today and learned a little about him).

I didn’t mean to suggest that there aren’t any submarine/sidearm starting pitchers—but I’ll stick to my contention that they get used as relievers more often than starters over the past 50-60 years. Even some of the really good sidearm starters, like Dennis Eckersley for example, eventually became much better known as relief specialists.

Here’s another guy I like:

you answered your question. stay down under, you’re getting people out. see if you can find footage of quissenbery of kansas city, tekulvey of pittsburg, and a recent guy threw for oakland (he was mentioned in the book moneyball). these guys are really good throwing from the bottom end

Dusty is referring to Chad Bradford who is no longer with the A’s, but Oakland has another one of “those” guys now: Brad Ziegler. He’s good, too.

If sidearm is your natural motion and you can hit spots with it keep it. It is extremely valuable since it is a hard skill to really master since like La said there are few models to look up to. It can also make lots of hitters looks silly with the movement. You can be a starter with submarine but they often aren’t because the don’t have the stamina to go 7 solid innings. There back tends to take a pounding so thats a problem as well

Hi, priceless.
And there’s a neat little move called the crossfire which works only with the sidearm delivery and which will work with any pitch. I picked up on that one when I was about fourteen and found that it gave me twice as many pitches—not to mention what it did to the batters’ timing! Ed Lopat helped me refine it, and I used it effectively for about two decades. A lot of guys are using it now. 8)

[quote=“Zita Carno”]Hi, priceless.
And there’s a neat little move called the crossfire which works only with the sidearm delivery and which will work with any pitch. I picked up on that one when I was about fourteen and found that it gave me twice as many pitches—not to mention what it did to the batters’ timing! Ed Lopat helped me refine it, and I used it effectively for about two decades. A lot of guys are using it now. 8)[/quote]
I pitch fastballs crossfire every now and then. I probably make my ugliest face when doing it too. :shock: