PLEASE help with update on my son


#1

Hi everybody!
Brett’s Mom here once again. Here is a video from August '09 (just turned 13). He is doing some light throwing with a pitching coach.

Any feedback appreciated. He’ll be going for a few more lessons before the season starts. Just wanted to see what you guys think he needs to work on most and, hopefully, his coach will agree. Will post new video as they come.

Thanks again for all your help!


#2

Hi
I honestly hope this doesn’t come accross as rude because I surely don’t mean for it to be but…why is it that some videos will get critiques from you guys and others are virtually ignored…except for the fact that tons of people open and view.
Is there some sort of criteria that is needed? Should it only be ‘game’ footage? Is it an angle thing???
This site is sometimes quite confusing: I had a thread last spring that a bunch of people looked over and made suggestions about for my son. It was VERY helpful and VERY appreciated.
I post a follow up video to show some of the progress that he’s been working on and just wanted to know if he was headed in the right direction compared to the earlier videos. He’s only going into his 2nd year pitching (3rd in baseball period!) and we honestly don’t know nearly as much as we need to. He’s moving up in the ranks VERY fast and sometimes our heads are spinning from it all! He has now made a strong AAA team and I thought this site would be a place to get advice from unbiased people with loads of experience.
Again, I apologize if this post comes accross in the wrong way. It’s not meant to. Just looking for help and maybe somebody out there can explain what I need to be doing in order to get some.
Thanks!


#3

posse,

This remark is also not meant to be rude, but helpful: You should consider using a cheap tripod for your video camera when you videotape your son’s pitching delivery.

Looking at the mechanical details of a pitcher’s fast-moving delivery in a video that also features a constantly moving frame of reference is difficult.


#4

Got it! I’ll get a tri pod. I know for sure the quality of our video is not the best. Also have seen much worse posted on here in the past though. No excuse…just sayin’!

Is there a special type of video camera that films that slo-mo stuff I’ve seen people post on here? Or do most cameras have a setting or whatever it’s called for that? Those videos are just great and I’ve often wondered about that. If I knew where my husband had the video camera right now, I’d grab it and let you know the make and type…maybe somebody would be able to advise on a good type to buy???

Thanks, Flip for your reply. I really do appreciate your honesty and help!

: )


#5

All I can say is that sometimes you have something instantly that comes to mind, sometimes you have to think about it, sometimes you have nothing at the moment to say. None of this is other than voluntary (Except Steven who carries the monetary expense of running this magnificent place) and at the expense of large amounts of time and effort…given freely and with much love and respect. There are other sites, some charge money, others aren’t very patient and kind of difficult to get much of a good feeling from. The problem is that you want to help, if you can, but it is difficult to be productive in every instance in every scenario. I know I try very hard to make sure most posts get a good look…do you know how much time that takes? I have a career in which it isn’t uncommon for me to do in excess of 60 hours (Many times I’ve worked over a 90 hrs within a week) and am on 24/7 on-call every 4th week. I also have a family and in particular the reason that I started coming here, a son of my own who has aspirations within the art of his own. All that said (And I’ve never really “said” all that, believe me I’m not complaining, just explaining why it is for me that some vids get an immediate response and some don’t get immediate response) what I know is that the people who contribute here do is straight from the heart and given freely with no motive other than good will and a desire to assist those who they can. Steven can and does market his work in many places and these forums are in no way used as a vehicle for marketing. So, anyway, I have looked at your sons video…shared and discussed it with my son, who is aspiring to be completely invested in the sport, by also coaching and working directly with the owner of a training facility, while preparing for his next college opportunity.
I’m not going to throw too much out there as your son is going to a coach, but I’d certainly look to see if I couldn’t get him to stand on both feet with his weight and body balanced before he starts. I’d see if the coach had concerns in this area. Look to see how much the coach works on fundementals.
I’d also point out that there are several of the regular posters of that time (Dusty Delso comes to mind) aren’t as regular as they were. So thats why, I’d urge patience, a little understanding, a bit of empathy perhaps. You can also try places like High School Baseball Web or Baseball Fever or even drop $25 and join the National Pitching Association and all of them can get you potentially some good advice.


#6

Hi JD
Thanks for your reply and I appreciate the fact that both yourself and your son took the time to have a quick look at Brett. I had never even noticed the balance evenly stance thing until you guys brought it up and now it’s plain as day! That’s why I come here to ask questions. We know NOTHING about this stuff. I will let him know and keep my eye on it.

Thanks for the websites you mentioned. I knew of HSB web and read there as well but I wasn’t aware of the others. The NPA one is great and I’ll surely sign up for the $25 on-line clinic thing.

Patience. You’re right. I could use some more of that! I guess I’m just anxious as things are a whole new ball of wax for Brett this coming season and, frankly, I’m nervous for him. He is so inexperienced and he has so much to learn in order to ‘catch up’ with the kids on his team. They’ve been playing together for years. Like since age 5!!! He has been brought in as an ‘import’ player on this AAA team and is very nervous about not letting anybody down. He is only going into his 2nd year of pitching (3rd playing ball at all). So, we are newbies totally!

Empathy and understanding. Have TONS of that! I can’t begin to tell you how many times I am in awe of the contributions folks like yourself, Flip, Steve Ellis, Roger, Coach May, Zita and many others make to this site on pretty much a daily basis. I am well aware of the fact that this is all done out of the goodness of your hearts and the love you all clearly have of the game. Please accept my apologies if I came accross differently to you. I really meant no harm. Just simply wanted to know what was needed, how I had to do things differently, etc. in order to get some feedback for my son.

Thanks again!
Lisa


#7

I found the following comments with a question as to why? …

Are there issues with your son’s current coach?

The age that your son is at is a very difficult age to coach, pitching wise. Youngsters at this age can have great strength, but lack the balance and motion skills to compliment that strength. Also, the art of pitching is just that an art, not a given.

I’d like to comment on what I see, but could you address my question above please.

Coach B.


#8

Hi Coach!
No problem answering your question. I suppose what I meant by that was:

Brett only had 3 private, half hour lessons with this coach last year. They took place not long after I had posted his 1st videos on this site. I believe we received a ton of correct feedback from the members here in regards to what Brett was needing to improve right away. If I remember correctly, I think that one of the big ones was his glove side was very wild in his 1st videos. Brett had worked on that before these lessons but it was something that they also worked on together.

I was impressed that you guys had it right and I was hoping that you could all weigh in as to the next ‘big’ problem area that needs to be addressed and I am hoping that this Coach ‘sees’ the same things. We have no experience as to who or what constitutes a good or proper pitching coach and I feel better knowing that several ‘coaches’ agree on things and, therefore, we may be spending our money in/with the right guy. We would never say anything to any of Brett’s coaches about what we think he needs, etc. We have NO IDEA what he needs! LOL!

On a side note: his pitching has again improved quite drastically over the winter. His team has been ‘dry land’ (it is Canada, after all!) training a few times a week with a respected coach within Canada. I just thought that maybe we would have Brett do another 3 sessions with the pitching coach from last year for a bit of last minute, pre-season tweaking in private, away from the team. I’m not even sure if that is right or wrong to be honest with you. Brett really did enjoy working with him though.

Anyways, I’m not sure if all that came out as I mean it to be. I do hope that it did. Geez…I’m not even sure what I mean these days!!! I don’t want this to get crazy for our son. I want him to enjoy his time with baseball. I’m a little afraid that things will be different this year…these guys are serious…and he’s not fully used to that although he is a very serious kid. Does that make sense? We want to provide him with all the opportunities possible for him, within our ability. We’re not rich so we want to make sure we’re going in the right direction. This year is costing us about triple the cost of last year. I know that includes US tournaments and all but it’s hard and we don’t want to make mistakes that we can possibly avoid.

Sorry for the long rambling…can you tell I’m a wee bit stressed?

Thanks again for any help you can provide for us. : )


#9

Sorry: forgot 2 things:

  1. Don’t know how I ever made the mistake when I said in a previous post about the outstanding members on this forum…I said Coach May and I meant Coach Baker!!! Please forgive my boo boo.

Is there also a Coach May somewhere??? Where did I get that from???

  1. Should I still take 1 newer video of Brett at his next team practice of his pitching so you guys can see the difference from the video above and how he is today or should I just wait until I get the tri-pod and figure out the slo-mo thing?

Thanks!


#10

Should I still take 1 newer video of Brett at his next team practice of his pitching so you guys can see the difference from the video above and how he is today or should I just wait until I get the tri-pod and figure out the slo-mo thing?

By all means, take some recent video and let’s all take a look see.

You have every right to be pro active with your son, and wanting to be careful with his progress and development. GOOD FOR YOU MOM!!! You’re the parent that will insure reasonable pitch counts, reasonable demands on his body, reasonable expectations by your son himself, and on it goes. You also impress me during your posts that you are reasonable yourself when it comes to your sons baseball experience.

But, the hardest part for moms and dads, is the letting go part once the youngster finds his own tempo, his own game plan, his own speed. It’s very hard and sometimes gut wrenching. Every one goes through it and we all seem to land on our feet regardless.

I know the pickens up in your neck of the woods can be sparse from time to time, and the coaching ranks can leave a lot to be desired. However one of the aspects of this sport - pitching, relies on a lot of self taught, self perspectives, and a lot of independent fact-finding. You’re going about it the right way - just by visiting this site, in addition to other sources. Just give everybody a little breathing room - your young man too, and a lot of things will fall into place. The only reason for a lot of us being here – is you and your family. Baseball people are kind-a funny like that. We won’t let you or your son down.

Coach B.


#11
  1. Your son pushes the ball.

  2. He has decent tempo (that’s good), but does not load or unload effectively which is most likely causing him to lose “potential” velocity.

  3. He spins to throw meaning he has very little segmented throwing pattern. In other words he rotates his entire core and shoulders to throw. Not hips then shoulders then arm to throw the ball.

I would also suggest to get some current video of him and a side view also (and don’t use youtube for pete sake!)

Normally I wouldn’t make a big deal of some of this (especially #3), but your son looks like a pretty big kid, and mature for his age (hence the reason he is getting a lot of attention right now). So this is a concern that he doesn’t have a lot of “projectability” to be able to fix this issues in the future (as he is already more mature physically than others his age with the same issues).

So I would say to you to not get caught up in the hype of your sons current success (maybe) and try to look at this long term and get him a more efficient delivery. Don’t settle for what he is now but try to think of what he could be 5 years from now if he works hard enough and get’s the right training.

Good luck.


#12

Baseball people are kind-a funny like that. We won’t let you or your son down.

Awww! Thanks so much! Really, taht is so sweet and, I know, that you guys truly do feel that way. : )

Okay…I’ll get some video of him asap. Would love to hear what you guys have to say…I guess, now that I think about it, the other video at the beginning of this post is kind of worthless, isn’t it? He’s changed so much from then. Oh well…if I had a dollar for every time I made a mistake…!

You’re so right about the letting go aspect. It’s really all me. I don’t push him at all though. Seriously! He hasn’t done a single thing, except some minor workouts in our gym (probably more to impress his little girlfriend with his newly found biceps than for the benefit of pitching but…hey…I’ll take it!) in between training with his team. He says he LOVES pitching, loves baseball (I don’t think he’s ever watched more than 6 games on TV though and yet I’m GLUED to the set during baseball season!) but he also, of course, LOVES hanging out with his group, texting on the stupid Blackberry, facebooking, video game playing, music blasting, gorging on junk food…typical stuff for a boy going on 14. It’s his Dad and I who hear all about how much potential he has, how good he could be…blah, blah, blah…so I don’t want him to waste that opportunity. Where is the fine line of not pushing and not bothering??? That’s the million $ question!

This site is addicting!


#13

Hi 101!

Thanks for your feedback. It’s very helpful. I have a question though:

  1. He has decent tempo (that’s good), but does not load or unload effectively which is most likely causing him to lose “potential” velocity.

I always thought that was the same as:

  1. He spins to throw meaning he has very little segmented throwing pattern. In other words he rotates his entire core and shoulders to throw. Not hips then shoulders then arm to throw the ball.

I see in the video exactly what you mean. Is it the same as when people talk about opening too soon/staying closed or something like that? I don’t quite understand all the differences. I guess it takes time.

I’ll post the new video after his next session. Oh…I’m clueless when it comes to this internet stuff too: what’s wrong with youtube? Yikes! Now I’m terrified I’ve put him at risk out there or something!!! Where/how should I post his videos from now on?

I do understand what you’re saying about him and his size now but, in his defense, some of the kids (on his team) that throw with mechanical inefficiencies have been doing it alot longer than he has. He has only pitched for 1 (Canadian! LOL!) season. He is improving quickly. At 13 years old, he’s 6’1", 170lbs and growing like a weed! His Dad is almost 6’5" (lots of Dutch height in his family!!) and Brett is, supposedly…how they figure this out, I’ll never know…going to be even taller than him. So, hopefully his mechanics still have alot of area for improvement on the ‘projectability’ factor. But, who knows? He could stop growing now and gain 100lbs, right? LOL!

Anyways…believe me, we make sure we tell Brett all the time that only hard work and practice will bring him success…not only with baseball…with everything. His size and his velocity will only get him noticed for a split second. He has to do the rest.


#14

posse,

You asked about vid cams that are capable of making slo-mo video.

I use a Casio EX-F1, retails for $1000, bought mine at B & H Photo (a highly reputable internet dealer).

Casio also makes at least two other cheaper vid cams that will also do somewhat lower quality slo-mo…one is the EX-FH20 and there is some other model.

If you go to YouTube and search Casio EX-F1 or Casio EX-FH20 you will find literally hundreds of amateur video clips that have been made with these cameras…so, you can decide for yourself whether they are right for your needs. Don’t worry that very few of the clips are from baseball…you should decide what to do based on picture quality (resolution) and slo-mo quality…for those decisions you can look at slo-mo of any fast human motion.

Here’s something from the Casio EX-F1:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnehldvI04Y


#15

[quote]
I always thought that was the same as:

  1. He spins to throw meaning he has very little segmented throwing pattern. In other words he rotates his entire core and shoulders to throw. Not hips then shoulders then arm to throw the ball.

I see in the video exactly what you mean. Is it the same as when people talk about opening too soon/staying closed or something like that? I don’t quite understand all the differences. I guess it takes time.[/quote]

No it’s not the same. Opening too early/staying closed is more of a timing issue. What I mean about spinning is exactly as I described. High level throwers (if you look at them frame by frame) rotate their hips first, and then the shoulders come around, then finally the arm.

Like a whip. That’s how you want to think about throwing.

Think of the hips/core as the whip handle, and the arm as the cord of the whip. Why does a whip make that cracking sound? Because the end of the whip is traveling so fast it breaks the sound barrier.

The throwing arm will not go that fast, but that’s the mental image he should have when he throws.

[quote]
I’ll post the new video after his next session. Oh…I’m clueless when it comes to this internet stuff too: what’s wrong with youtube? Yikes! Now I’m terrified I’ve put him at risk out there or something!!! Where/how should I post his videos from now on? [/quote]

I don’t like youtube simply because you cannot look at the video frame by frame. There are a couple pieces of software you can find online the convert the youtube videos to animated GIF’s or MOV files (these are the files you can view in Quicktime which you will be able to use to look at the video frame by frame) but I honestly get tired of converting all these youtube clips all the time. I may do it for you if you post some new clips.

:shock:

Holy $%#*&…the kid is a beast already :lol:

You doing great so far just trying to learn. I applaud you for that. I would suggest that you continue to learn as much as you possibly can to help your son reach his potential. It is a 24/7 project that no one but you…the parent…will have the desire to take on. Not any coach or stranger will do that.

Your son, even though he’s a big kid, still has lot’s of time. But don’t waste anymore time, because the window to correct mechanical issues is closing very quickly. Even though he will gain velocity most likely as he get’s older, stronger, more mature. If he doesn’t start working on these mechanical inefficiencies now, he will only get to a certain point before they are ingrained in his muscle memory for good.


#16

I agree with a lot of what’s already been said. The crouching down in the set position isn’t ideal. Too much unnecessary stress on the legs, and it’s wasted motion to have to stand up (he actually leans back kinda far) and then crouch down again when he lifts his leg and starts his movement toward the plate. Keep working hard! The learning process should be enjoyable!