Regarding Sliders


Hey guys, just a question: Can someone who really knows what they’re doing tell me how old I should be to throw a slider? I heard when I’m done growing (16), when I’m 17-19, and I can throw it when I’m under 18 as long as I throw it cautiously. Thank you in advance guys!


I will NEVER twist my wrist like no-one should, I don’t throw too many, and I throw it right. I know that it’s still an arm-stressful pitch though.


I don’t know what you mean by throw it cautiously…
It is a stressful pitch. It is less stressful than throwing a curveball as long as the curveball is thrown correctly.
I don’t know what you age is…there is no magic age with pitches. I prefer pitchers don’t throw anything except fastball/change until they can control both of those pitches. It would be fine with me if a pitcher didn’t learn a breaking ball until he was in his teens. This usually does not happen of course.
Sliders, split finger…these are stressful pitches on the elbow.


I meant be careful and try not to be reckless. That’s also what it said on the article I was reading. I’m 15. If you don’t believe there is a certain age, then what do you recommend?


I’m a believer in the inside slider, but not so much the outside one. I consider sliders to be barrel-seeking fastballs, so I rarely locate above the knees or middle away.

I began to throw it when I was 16 and it was good right out of the box. Once I could locate the pitch, it came in very handy.

I began to throw a curve when I was 12. I threw a good curve when I was 15.

The slider is certainly easier to master. To me, the slider is harder on my arm than the curve.

I can also throw the curve to all parts of the zone depending upon the count. For my money, the curve is the more versatile pitch.


I think it depends on physical maturity and other factors.
At 15 you may be physically mature or may not be that close to being physically mature. But, things are never that cut and dry. Its not like the first time you shave twice in a week your arm is ready for a certain pitch.
How much do you throw? How conditioned is your arm?
Master the FB/Change first and then go from there. My son used to throw a slider that had success at the JV level, when he got to Varsity it got mashed so he switched to a curveball.


Many people consider the slider to be hard (hardest?) on the arm because it combines the supination of a breaking pitch with the arm speed and, therefore, forces of a fastball. Most people who endorse a certain age for throwing the slider recommend late teens (17-18).


I throw daily and it’s pretty conditioned. I have mastered the fastball and the change up.


Mastered fb and change


In my opinion, the curveball or knuckle-curve make the most sense for a 3rd pitch. The knuckle-curve is often found to be easier to learn and nearly as effective as a standard curveball. Maybe give it a try and see how you like it.

A good couple of good drills for spinning a curveball is to set up a 5 gallon bucket 20-30 feet away and spinning the ball trying to “make a bucket”. It will help you get a consistent release point if you can get it near or into the bucket with regularity. Another great drill is to use a tennis ball can and try to tumble it end over end. Grip the mouth of the can like a baseball with the tube extending up above your hand and throw the can at a net trying to get perfect 12-6 or 1-7 rotation.


Yeah it mainly is, I also have a cutter, sinker, and a slider