Son releasing the ball wrong?

My son is 8yrs old and throws righty.When he pitches the ball it comes to the catcher with a curveball/slider type movement. We have a friend that thinks he is releasing the ball off of the side of his hand-not in a downward snap type motion staying on top of the ball. He feels this may hurt his arm over time. My sons hands are on the small side so I don’t know if this is a bad habit or just what is comfortable for now. Is this concern or will he otgrow it over time? I have been reminding him to stay on top of the ball and snap down -sometimes it is straight others back to a spin on the ball. Any advice/suggestions/opinions welcomed. Thanks for the help !!

Sounds like your son is supinating the pitch. “Supinating” means rotating the hand to a thumbs up position. Supinating into release point is generally considered hard on the arm.

I suggest working with your son on keeping the hand behind the ball instead of getting around the side of it. You can draw a black stripe around a baseball with a magic marker and have your son throw in such a way as to keep the stripe looking like a steady black line instead of “wobbling”.

amazinments,

You can video your son to see exactly what is happening. It is possible to get a good enough video even from your digital still camera with video feature. You can view the vids on the windows media player frame by frame to get a picture right at release.

Especially if your son uses three fingers for his grip, uneven finger pressure can make the ball spin other than 6 to 12 on the fastball.

If it is indeed supination you will want to remedy before it becomes more ingrained in his arm action.

Good luck,

Ted

[quote=“Ted”]amazinments,

You can video your son to see exactly what is happening. It is possible to get a good enough video even from your digital still camera with video feature. You can view the vids on the windows media player frame by frame to get a picture right at release.

Especially if your son uses three fingers for his grip, uneven finger pressure can make the ball spin other than 6 to 12 on the fastball.

If it is indeed supination you will want to remedy before it becomes more ingrained in his arm action.

Good luck,

Ted[/quote]

Just to piggyback what Ted said, i started videoing my son this summer, after i started seeing some “awkwardness” in his delivery. I never could tell what it was with the naked eye, but i was sure there was something wrong. When we played catch, or when he played a position, he threw smoothly and accurately. When he pitched, he couldnt hit the side of a barn sometimes. After videoing him one time, one of the guys here noticed he was letting his glove side arm just dangle during a pitch, and he was throwing over his GS arm.

Anyway, no one had ever said anything about his glove side arm. His coaches include a former 6 yr ML pitching veteran, and a former Div II college All American pitcher. If these guys couldnt or didnt notice this major flaw with the naked eye, how can we?

So, video video video. Watch them frame by frame, and compare them to vids of ML pitchers, on this site, or elsewhere. My wife thinks ive become some sort of obsessed freak becuse i sit here and watch the videos of my son over and over. But im learning. And thats just as important as diagnosing your kid. Because in the end no one else is going to look out for them like we can.

Our wives don’t need video tape to see where we are. My wife hasn’t said it out loud yet but I have gotten some looks lately. Guess it comes with the territory.

Ted

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for the suggestions. I have been working with my youngest son with the striped ball and am starting to see some improvement- he’s stubborn though so it will take some time! I also plan on videotaping both my boys and posting on the site to see where they need improvement. Again thanks for the help- this site has been incredible as far as information and knowledge in learning how coach my sons in the correct way to pitch.

I have taught quite a few pitching lessons to little leaguers who had the same issue of releasing the ball and supinating around the outside of the ball.

One of the best drills to do is to have the pitcher get into what I call the “post stride position.” Basically, start from the position with front foot forward, glove out and throwing hand up by the head at release point. From this position, have the pitcher “spin” the ball forward and finish over top of the front leg. Without the rest of the arm motion, it will be more difficult to release incorrectly. The drill forces the pitcher to use the fingertips to spin the baseball correctly and makes it easier to keep the hand in the same position.

Of course, any adjustment takes time and repetition to take affect, but with some patience, the changes will come.

My Son is 10 in this pick, it is a good pick to see how the fingers should come off the ball.

I just love a great “throw grimmace” 8)

We’ve been playing catch with a striped ball the last month or so when the weather has permitted, and it seems to have helped my son with the whole “hand behind the ball” thing.

Just thought i’d share. :smiley:

That mound is horrible.