Strategies for youth pitching


I am in little league and am known as a a fast thrower (some people can’t catch up). I have run into good batters and have gotten cheap hits. I can throw a hard dropping curve, a cutter that makes people duck, and I’m working on a shuuto ( if you know much about this pitch can you please imform me on it?), and my 2 firing fastballs. When I come into these types of hitters what should I do? :?:


Good hitters are often good fastball hitters so mix in some offspeed pitches to keep them guessing. Do you have a change-up in your arsenal?


There’s an old saying that rings true:

“Hitting is about timing. Pitching is about upsetting that timing.”

So, think about how you might do that. As Roger said, mix things up with some strategically timed change ups. Not only is changing speeds important but location is also. Don’t be predictable. If a hitter is pulling your best fastball foul, he’s getting around on you easily and early. You might want to consider an off-speed pitch at that point to upset his timing. If someone’s having trouble getting around on your fastball in time, you might not be terribly successful with a change up at that point. You might be doing the hitter a favour that way. Of course, nothing is always going to work, so, avoid being too predictable.


You might as well call this “strategies for pitching”, period.
My wise and wonderful pitching coach told me this: “Move the ball around—high, low, inside, outside, work the corners, change speeds, throw strikes, and stay away from the middle of the plate.” The secret of strategic pitching can be boiled down to this: Figure out what the batter is looking for, and don’t give it to him. Know the batter’s strengths and weaknesses and pitch accordingly, and when in doubt feed him a changeup—there’s a whole basketful to choose from.
As for the “shuuto”—I remember a guy named Shigetoshi Hasegawa who used to pitch for the Seattle Mariners and a couple of other teams. He was a late-inning reliever, even a closer, and when that pitch was working for him he was lights out. The pitch might well be described as a changeup screwball, and he was not the first one to throw it; a Cincinnati Reds hurler named Joey Jay may have been the first to come up with it. It doesn’t put as much stress and strain on the arm as the regular screwball, and once a pitcher has the hang of it and can throw it for strikes he can do very well with it. 8) :slight_smile:


At 11 years old you need to work on a Change Up. Forget the novelty pitches for now. you have plenty of time to develop the shuuto and other screwballs. As you get older and advance you’re going to want the ability to change speeds without throwing the breaker.

Learn the change, keep the fastball and curve ball.

I would love to see video of the cutter you throw that makes people duck. Can honestly say I’ve never seen one like that. Even the great Mariano didn’t make guys duck with his cutter.


No—he just broke bats with it, did Mariano Rivera. Average one a game, on occasion two. I’ve always been very surprised that other teams didn’t send him a bill for all the bats they had to replace! And he got his strikeouts and the like.
My wise and wonderful pitching coach told me that just about any pitch can be turned into a nice changeup, and he demonstrated a few for me and showed me how to throw them. The whole idea is in the grip, how one holds the ball—but you throw every one the same way, with the fastball motion! That’s what discombooberates hitters. 8)