Texas Baseball Ranch Elite Boot Camp Worth It?


#1

For the last 6 months or so, my son (15 years old) has been doing the Driveline throwing program when he has time between Fall ball, high school tryouts and now Spring school baseball (about 4 weeks’ worth before Fall ball, then about 6 weeks between Thanksgiving and the start of school workouts in January). He feels like it has helped strengthen his arm and increase his velocity. However, I don’t think it’s done much at all to improve his mechanics and I think he could really benefit from some intensive, expert evaluation and instruction on mechanics and technique - both for increasing his velocity and for minimizing the risk of injury.

So, I’ve been thinking about doing the Elite Pitcher Boot Camp at the Texas Baseball Ranch. We live in Dallas, so it’s only about a 3-hour drive for us, but the price seems awfully steep for two and a half days. Can those of you who have done the Boot Camp give me an idea of how much benefit you thought you got out of it - and whether you thought it was worth the cost? Thanks.


#2

My son and I have both gone to the TBR a couple years ago when he was 15. My son just completed a four month program of driveline University which is their Driveline’s remote training program. In my opinion, and this is just my opinion,Texas baseball Ranch really helped him learn more about conditioning drills than anything else. His velocity did not increase and the three-day event is really geared toward building a foundation to start a more advanced training program they offer. I believe it’s called durathro. All the instructors at TBR are passionate and care about the athletes and they work the kids really hard and there’s a lot crammed into those three days. One of the things and are mine and now looking back was a mistake was expecting immediate gains from attending the three-day event. And while some kids may have had success in the three-day event we did not. So, don’t expect massive increases in velocity in three days . There’s no magic formula. You have to work very hard, train right, eat right, rest and recover and be totally dedicated. And in all fairness to Texas Baseball Ranch, we did not do there Duro throw program after the three-day event so I cannot comment any further on any pros or cons regarding it. With Driveline University, my son increased his mound velocity (4 seam) consistently by 6 miles per hour within the four months and also increased his pull Down velo by 11 miles per hour. Part of Driveline training curriculum is a book titled “hacking the kinetic chain” and in my mind, the best manual for pitching mechanics and the scientific reasoning behind the concept and drills. Driveline is all about balance and learning about that in your training. Proper pitching mechanics, weight training, cardio and understanding how it all works together. My son’s mechanics were poor prior to their program and now after the 4-month’s, his command is much better. We are actually going to Seattle Washington this summer to train for a couple weeks at Driveline after this year’s High School season ends. One thing I would recommend is allow your son to have some time off. I think too many kids are playing baseball year round and it’s draining. We are going to invest our time this off season to increase velocity and work on increasing strength. I hope this helps you make some decisions. Feel free to contact me or reply if you have any other specific questions and I will give you my opinion. My son is 17 years old and he is a junior in high school now.


#3

Thanks for the response. My son did about 8 weeks of the Driveline HTKC program between Thanksgiving and early January. That’s the program that he feels like was effective at increasing his arm strength - even though we weren’t able to complete the entire cycle because Spring baseball started up. I’ve noticed that my son has one of the strongest arms on his team when it comes to long toss, but his velocity is only mediocre from the mound compared to the other pitchers on the team. That tells me that he has good arm strength and there is something with his pitching mechanics that’s holding him back from reaching his full potential velocity on the mound. I’ve also noticed that his pitching delivery just looks different from the other good pitchers on the team, but I’m nowhere near qualified to figure out exactly why or what to do about it. For those reasons I’m really hoping to find a camp, clinic or local coach who can do some really high quality analysis of his pitching mechanics; show him where he can improve; and give him drills to work on to do that. I was hoping Driveline would be that kind of place, but it sounds like they’re mainly focused on conditioning (which is great, but I don’t want to pay $2,000 and spend 3 days in rural Texas when we already have the HTKC program that we like).


#4

One other thought. There’s another program called the 3X Velocity Camp that’s put on by a placed called Top Velocity. Does anyone have experience with that program?

Thanks


#5

Mr. Johnson,
contact me at Info@TexasPitchingInstitute.com and I can help you out. I will be spending a lot of time in the Dallas area (Addison) this summer. I’ll be up there this weekend for 2 days of clinics at D-BAT as well.
Feel free to look through my website as well and let me know if you have any questions? www.TexasPitchingInstitute.com

Thanks,
Andy Powers


#6

Yes, we do. However, we did not complete the full 3x training program. We made the decision to drop it and go full bore with Driveline. Very glad we did. Not because 3x didn’t work, we never finished it, but because Driveline did. My son increased his pull down 11mph and his mound velo by 4 to 6 mph in 4 months, training 6 days a week. We are making the trip to Seattle this summer to train 2 weeks at Driveline. We’re forgoing summer and Fall ball this year to focus on strength, cardio, throwing and hitting. 25 weeks of hardcore training. Goal is to increase gains again by 4 off mound/11 mph pulldown by end of training period, 65/35 strike/ball ratio, and develop secondary pitches. Of course I’m going broke lol but what the hell. Investing in my son and his goals are more important for me than not going for it. Keep me in the loop on how your son is doing. All the best to you both…


#7

How does he compare statistically against the the other pitchers? If that’s a possibility. Just wondering how effective his delivery is. Velocity seems to be king fo recruiting. From what your saying I’m gathering he’s a great pitcher.


#8

Harebone - I can’t tell whether your question was directed to me or GoTribe. My son has had a decent season so far. He’s on our JV team, which is a combo of sophomores and juniors. He’s a soph, and the coach tends to pitch the juniors more, so he hasn’t gotten a whole lot of innings yet. I’m biased, but I would say he’s definitely one of the top 2 or 3 soph pitchers on the team (there are 10 or 12 sophs who pitch). His velo is just mediocre, but he gets pretty good movement on his pitches - even his fastball. I’m not expert (at all), but I really think that with a few tweaks to his mechanics he could gain a fair amount of velo. We’re definitely going to do a program this Summer; we’re just still deciding between the programs I mentioned.


#9

Have you found that your son’s pitching mechanics have improved through the Driveline program? I know Driveline claims that just doing their plyo-ball drills, etc. will “re-map” pitching mechanics without any outside coaching, but I haven’t really seen that with my son (yet). Have you?

Thanks.


#10

Brenkj, absolutely 100% it helped his mechanics. I had taken him to pitching coaches prior and they always tried to change his mechanics to how they pitched themselves. How they were taught. This only confused my son.


#11

Thanks for the response, Gotribe. Sorry to be dense about this, but can you explain a little about how the Driveline program has helped your son’s mechanics? Is it just performing the plyo-ball exercises themselves that help? That seems to be the theory based on reading their materials, but that hasn’t really come to pass with my son.

His biggest issue (in my amateur opinion) is that his arm is “late” in his delivery (he drops it down by his back knee after he breaks his hands, and it’s nowhere near “fully cocked” when his front foot plants). He even does that on throws from 3B. After helping him with the plyo drills for a couple of months, I don’t see how any of those drills would help with that issue. I’ve also become a little worried that doing drills with plyo-balls (heavier than baseballs) with a “late” arm might put a lot of stress on his elbow and/or shoulder. I’d really like to fix that “late arm” problem first, and then get back into the Driveline program, but I’m not sure how to go about that.


#12

No worries at all I have dealt with those exact same issues with my own son. I know all too well the struggles you’re going through and how difficult it is. First of all let me ask you do you have a copy of their book hacking the kinetic chain? If you do all of your questions are answered in that book. The short of it is if you hire somebody to study his mechanics and then they give you instruction on how to correct those or any other issues it really is only the opinion of the one individual who’s doing the actual assessment. Does that make sense? You see from my experience every pitching coach we’ve ever gone to has tried to teach my son their way of pitching. The very best advice I can give you outside of the book is to contact Driveline and get set up with their Driveline University program. It’s a remote training program but they have an instructor who you will work with for both pitching instruction and weight training as well as other types of exercises not just the plyocare balls. They communicate through an app called Slack and they provide you with the necessary tools Like Jaeger bands, a radar gun, weighted balls, weighted plyocare balls, the hacking the kinetic chain book and wrist weights. Once or twice per week you will input data be it plyocare or weighted balls, weight training, auxillary exercises in a spreadsheet which uplinks through Slack. Driveline University
It is a four month commitment and the training is six days per week and requires complete and total dedication if you want to correct those issues as well as increase velocity gains. And also know that they make no guarantees of what velocity games if any will be made. I like that a lot because any program that tells you or guarantees you that, well, let just say you better read the fine print. It’s not cheap but from my perspective and what we’ve gained from it and the knowledge, that’s the very reason I’m investing more time and money traveling and training there to Seattle this summer, at their actual facility for two weeks. I hope this all helps and again I understand and appreciate your journeyperiod at the end of the day it’s our sons who have to put in the work and really trained and want to make it happen as much as we want them to as their parents it’s really up to them. All we can do is support them and try to help them with the best information and knowledge we can. And like I said before not every program works for everybody. But Driveline worked for us and is working so that’s what we’re sticking with. PS by the way Drive Line isn’t compensating me for saying anything at all about their program I want that to be very clear. Nor did I receive any type of discounts to say anything at all about their program. I spent serious money out of my own pocket and my aim is to assist others so they have a good quality opinion of what we went through in our own journey, plain and simple.


#13

That was for you. I apologize for the confusion. I get that often. You answered my question. Velocity is king and it opens the most doors. I’m interested in hearing how well your son does during his Highschool years. Velocity can be a one trick pony. It can also be a fast road to injury. But it’s still very important and always needs to be worked on at any level of pitching. It sounds like your sons a great pitcher and puts in the work. I guess what I was trying to say is he sounds like a very effective pitcher. I would imagine it’s been a fun time. Keep it up ad keep us posted.


#14

I found one other pitching training option I’m interested in (in addition to the Texas Baseball Ranch, Driveline U., and 3X Velocity). It’s the Core Velocity camp and training program by Lantz Wheeler with Baseball Think Tank. Does anyone have experience with that camp and program? Any thoughts on whether it’s a better option than TBR or the others?

Also, it looks like the only Core Velocity camp that doesn’t conflict with our summer tournament schedule is already sold out. Does anyone know if Lantz has any other options for in-person training besides these camps? I tried to contact Lantz to ask, but I can’t find any contact info on his website. If anyone knows how I can contact him, that would also be great.
Thanks.


#15

Lantz is a beast. Go there. Money well spent.


#16

Try to get into his Facebook invite only group. I believe you can request to join.
Try searching Baseball ThinkTank on facebook


#17

Thanks JRS. Actually, since my last post I contacted Lantz. We got in on a special promotion that includes his 90-day remote training program plus one of his 3-day camps. The best part is, he’s actually doing a camp just about 20 miles from us - and it’s during a week that we don’t have a tournament - so the stars are all aligning. We’ve been in the remote training program for about 2 weeks and so far it’s been great.