Strength versus mechanics

Hey guys, I’m wondering how much does strength do with your velocity, and how much does good mechanics do?

I’ve seen guys around here who throw mid 80’s and are skinny unlike those who are big build and throw maybe in the low 80’s. Where do they get their velocity from? Strong legs? Strong torso? Because when you see them it’s hard to imagine he throws that hard when hes on the mound.


Strength has little to do with velocity… it’s more about speed of movement and proper mechanics. It doesn’t take a lot of strength to throw a 5 ounce ball. Velocity equals mass times acceleration, so a bigger person has an advantage over a smaller person as long as he can move his body in an explosive fashion. If he is slow and robotic, he will not be maximizing his potential velocity. Functional strength, on the other hand, is important for weight transfer, landing, bracing, etc. Also, a big, bulky, muscular frame is not ideal - the skinny pitchers do well because they move fast and they rely on elastic energy - they get their bodies on full stretch with no hesitation to slow them down - ala Lincecum, Oswalt, etc.

Some of those guys are just given God given talent. I have a beanpole LHP on my team who can role out of bed and throw 90+

Then i also have another teammate who busts his ass in the weight room and throws 90+ because of it.

Hitting the weight room if you have never done so properly before will definitely add MPH’s. Not much but it will.

Correcting your mechanics may do the same (or it could do the reverse)

Adding velocity isnt the end all be all unless you want to play at the level after college.

To increase velocity you have to work on overall flexibility. In the hips, thighs, torso, wrists, hands, shoulders, forearms, and butt believe it or not. Once you have worked quite a bit on your flexibility work on exploding from all of these muscle groups. Think about sprinters, they are not huge muscle bound men, look at Usain Bolt. I have a friend that is a sprinter for my high school. Many of the things they have to do is first improve and then maintain high flexibility. And once they have done this, they work on developing fast twitch muscle fibers. Like structuredoc said, its all about functional strength. And increased flexibility will increase control of your movements and make them easier to execute

Strength is just as important as mechanics to velocity. If you don’t have sufficient strength you will not be able to produce consistent mechanics and therefore high level velocity. Some guys naturally can throw harder yes, but I guarantee that many of them also are pretty dang strong.
if you are lacking in either strength or mechanics you will never be able to reach your full potential.

Think holistically, folks. The whole is greater than the sum of the parts. There’s a dynamic at work here.

Thank you for the comments. I am wondering where on earth does Ubaldo Jimenez gets his speed from? I also watched him last year and I keep wondering since he has non-aggressive mechanics. (ones I find aggressive are Heath Bell, K-Rod)

While Ubaldo may not be extremely quick to the plate like K-Rod or Heath Bell, his mechanics are very good (obviously, nobody can throw 100 mph without having at least good mechanics, at least the ones pertaining to velocity).

I will post a clip I found on this site in the near future but from the look of it he has good seperation and a nice delayed arm action which equals a nice kinetic whip.