Setting up a hitter

I am just wondering how I can improve as a catcher, helping my pitcher, and setting up a hitter. I understand that you have to move in, out, up and down, but at times, my pitcher still gets hit. I am looking for some tips for setting hitters up, for example, from at bat to at bat. first at bat, fastball away, fastball up and in, curve down and away. just wondering what i have to do to get better at the mental side of baseball.

You’re already on the right track just by asking. My suggestion is to go to
and checking out Perry Husbands concepts of effective velocity, at risk pitches, and batter’s attention theory. These concepts will help you get even better at pitch sequencing. (You may have to purchase a book or e-book to get some real substance.)

is there any other website where i can get this information without paying?

“Setting up the hitters” begins with knowing the hitters—their strengths and their weaknesses, how they position themselves at the plate, whether they swing early or late, uppercut or chop down at the pitch, pull or go to the opposite field. Then you can figure out what pitches to call so as to throw the hitters off balance, mess up their timing and their thinking. I remember the times Ed Lopat would sit down with me and go over the opposing team’s lineup, batter by batter—for example, I was slated to start a game the next afternoon, and Lopat wanted to know if I had ever faced that team before. I hadn’t, although I had seen them in action. He said, “Let’s go over their lineup. Leadoff man.” He wanted to know what I knew about the hitters and how I intended to pitch to them. That kind of preparation is nothing short of priceless, and the next day before the game I would get together with my catcher and we would go over that lineup.
My catcher—although he was no Yogi Berra or Johnny Bench, he was a highly intelligent receiver who knew my stuff and what I could do with it—would then formulate a plan for how to pitch to those guys and get them out. I’ll tell you something—the ideal situation is when a pitcher and a catcher work together as a team, and that was what we had. :slight_smile: 8)

I don’t think so.

alright guys. thanks for the help. going to be out there scouting more often, and trying to talk to my pitchers about my opponents line-up.

You must first establish both sides of the plate. 2nd, you must understand when the picther is struggling & every one of your pitchers style. Your the captain regardless if selected and not. 3rd and finally, don;t let any balls get to the wire. It gives pitchers confident to throw any pitch and any situation.

what do I do if my pitcher isn’t throwing well, and he’s not hitting his spots?

Good catchers are also pretty good pitching coaches. I’ve seen MLB catchers give their pitchers tips on mechanical issues. The more you learn about pitching mechanics, the better you will will be able to help your pitchers. So, again, you’re on the right track by being here on this site.

Coach Baker recently posted a sketch of how to figure the line-up by slot, search on his posts, there is some fabulous stuff in there.
I think if you think match-up, line-up vs skill set of your given pitcher, you’ll find success in there. I always lean aggressive but that doesn’t work with some kids, so knowing what your pitcher brings against a line-up you know (By scouting or intelligence like news stories) is your best weapon imo. Be flexable, unpredictable and challenge every chance you get…things should work out to your advantage.

alrighty. thanks guys. i will have to work on this. I am pitcher, just i guess I don’t have good mechanics. So i should improve on those, so then i can help my pitchers become better than they already are.

Read Stranger to the Game: The Autobiography of Bob Gibson. It is a great book, and chapter 8 tells you the key components to his success.

stranger to the game. alright. gonna have to get that bookk.

Well you have to be a type of pitcher like Bob Gibson to get what he is saying. Are you a Bob Gibson or Greg Maddux? Are you mean and pitch inside, or are you a robot and pitch outside?

Also, be aware of the batters’ proclivities. When you’re facing a dead pull hitter, you can stop him by pitching outside to him so that he’ll be forced to hit to the opposite field—if he can hit it. In the World Series just concluded, Andy Pettitte was able to negate certain batters’ power in this way. 8)

I play catcher too, and when moving around to different locations in the strike zone, move your whole body, a lot of pitchers like to throw to the body, not the glove.

roger’s reference to perry husband’s effective velocity is very good. if you don’t want to spend any money learning how to pitch go to wal-mart. these guys spend a lifetime figuring out something that works and you don’t want to spend $20 to learn what they know. that’s sad.

koufax used to start this way and we found this to be very effective, especially at the amateur level.

first, set up down the middle of the plate and see how much natural movement you have that day. if you are all over the place in the bullpen, just stay there. better to get hit than walk the world trying to go inside outside when you can’t even throw to the center of the plate. if you throw it over the plate they have to hit it. if you can’t find the plate, they don’t have to swing.

my dear friend vern ruhle handed this out to his staff when the houston astros won the national league central and maddux beat them in the playoffs. if it works for the best, it will work for you. this is the single best advice he ever gave me sitting in a restaurant outside the astrodome. he told his guys to throw their best pitch as the first pitch anywhere low in the zone. DO NOT be too fine. if you get this pitch for a strike you are in great shape. the best thing that can happen is they will hit it on the ground. if you get that strike, now you can go inside or outside. NEVER throw a curveball in or out, throw it to the middle down. you can throw the slider in/out but not the curveball. same with the change, start with it down and do not throw it inside. if the first pitch is a ball, do the same thing with the second pitch, anywhere down. get that strike. we do not go to two balls.

the easiest pitch to hit is up and away to middle up. up and in/low and away are the best. stop being too fine, the ball will move around enough until you are really good. most amateur pitchers cannot locate as well as they think they can (and vern was the pitching coach for the oklahoma sooners when they were national champions).

we won 3 national summer tournaments using this pitching philosophy (and some great arms). take it for what it’s worth. a man who was one of the best in the game.

The best thing you can do is KNOW YOUR HITTERS. It is a lot easier for the catcher to keep track of what hitters can do and what pitches he has been or hasn’t been hitting. Know each hitters weaknesses…read scouting reports…talk to other teams and players. A pitcher wants to be able to nod and throw and be in synch with the catcher as much as possible. If you’ve done your homework - your pitcher can rely on you more and relax better on the mound.

In a slightly related note… make sure you are doing everything you can to help your pitcher out with how you receive and set up. Be sure not to pull pitches out of the zone when you receive. Also, block everything in the dirt. The more your pitching staff knows you will do these things, the better they trust you.

Also, don’t only call fastballs with runners on…I know its easier to throw guys out…but pitchers hate that.