The Tim Lincecum Affect

TheTim Lincecum affect

There is no doubt that Tim Lincecum is both accomplished in his craft as he is athletic. His devotion in preparing for his chosen vocation is evidence by his skill level to this date.

And as much as I would turn away from any naysayer that would find fault with this young man… I would like to point some things out with respect to Lincecum’s form, for those youngsters attempting to copy his style. And in that regard, it’s nothing negative, nor critical. Just observations.

Lincecum’s build is somewhat linear, slim, but athletic. His muscular structure compliments his upper body’s tempo with his lower half and his ability to transfer motion, in incremental direction – when the feeling is just right, is a credit to his sensitivity of what his body can and can not do.

He is also consistent – pitch after pitch, inning after inning. Repeatable movements that mirrors the last.

The next time you watch video of Lincecum, pay particular attention to his power as it’s started with his hips, then the small of the back twists quickly over a very short span of time – passing on to the upper torso another direction of his front shoulder pulling down, which allows his pitching side to generate an impressive amount of arm speed. This arm speed is due in part to his entire chest-sternum and shoulder platform to deliberately roll with such force that his follow up take his head tilting towards the first baseline… although his head discipline is exceptional during his initial motion.

During his youth years he should enjoy a very prosperous career. His command will be matching his awesome firepower during this youth phase and he should go into the records books as one of the greats.

On the other hand, in about four years his body will be less dependable while enduring such physical demands. Hence, it’s not uncommon for the lower back vertebrae, lower neck vertebrae and sternum (chest center) to support less and less when called on to compliment the rest of the body.

And therein is a hidden problem for a pitcher of Lincecum’s quality. When performance is asked for, by reaching back… some parts of the body are just not there to reach back for. Some of these components are just not as supple and flexible as they use to be.

So, admire Tim Lincecum and wish him the very best in our game. Just be aware that in trying to copy his style, your also copying some of the inherited weaknesses that come along with it.

Coach B.

As you always say coach; Print this post and pin it up on your wall…this is an example on how copying a mech can be detrimental and have unforseen consequences…PAY HEED Ya’ll!!!

:applause: :applause: :applause:

Excellent commentary, Coach B. I think too many fail to recognize that we lose flexibility as we age and they fail to appreciate the effects of losing flexibility.

I once heard Tom House state that, next to his big mouth, the main reason John Rocker left the game was because he lost too much flexibility.

Lincecum’s mechanics aren’t really that “unique”. If one can recognize what he does well, there is no need to copy him limb for limb, angle for angle, frame for frame. He just pushes the limit with his long stride, torso lean, and late arm external rotation.

Here are 3 other pitchers who “do things” similar to Lincecum. Check out this clip I have posted before.

Here is another:

Your take on Lincecum is absolutely correct, and his similarity to others in the game is an excellent observation. And your comment about… There is no reason to copy him limb for limb, angel for angle, frame for frame… is sound wisdom and should be understood by all who read these pages. Well said.

As a side note, all pro pitchers share a “breaking in” phase to pro ball that is not so obvious as comparing style and form, and any kind of similarity among or between professional pitchers in that regard just doesn’t exist. I’m sure Steven Ellis can attest to that from his own experiences and observations along the way.

However, Lincecum is unique in some ways that represents the broader population of those youngsters that tour this site looking for advice and suggestions… either asked for… or observed and left to their own imagination. For example, he is young…very young to be so successful and in the Majors. He’s also not that far removed from the playing days of those youngsters that watch him perform. And without any doubt… he’s skillful and dynamic to watch… who wouldn’t want to be like this kid… by any kid.

When we put his performances in a frame next to those with similar moves, like you did here, notice the grown man to whom he’s next to. These MEN are more muscular in build, heavier in the trunk (torso) and by my estimations… have adjusted to learning curve that Lincecum has yet to endure. Now I’m not claiming that he’ll break down completely tomorrow, but if does continue without adjusting to his aging frame and
supporting physique, he will have noticeable issues. Tim Lincecum is healthy, athletic, and slim physique wise. A prime candidate of health maintenance issues if left to fireball status. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if his pitch selection didn’t change drastically next year or the year after. And when this happens to a guy who’s known as a heater, he becomes more predictable… which means he either refines his craft or he reverts
back to heat. The second choice is a career killer.

Ok, how does all this relate to this topic section on Let’s Talk Pitching ?

A youngster, amateur coach, mom’s and dad’s and other interested parties should realize the simple facts that were so plainly stated by JD and ROGER. In fact, about 75% of rehab work that I used to do just a few years ago … had their roots in correcting pitchers that had somebody else’s style and motion … but they forgot to bring that somebody else’s body with them. Copying form is a good thing when the copy is constructive. Taking bits and pieces that fit … are all part of the training process… and EVERY COACH DOES IT. After all, coaches must have a starting point and a reference(s) to their work… as does the athlete their training. Also, age and ability go hand in hand with the process.

So, the intent of the read was to caution youngsters on the merits of “easy does it” with trying to be like someone else… regardless if it’s Lincecum, Clemens, Koufax, Maddox, or Oil Can Boyd.

xv84 your post was well done.

Coach B.

hey XV84
where did u get those pitching clips from?

[quote=“kelvinp”]hey XV84
where did u get those pitching clips from?[/quote]

I made them off various sources I found on the internet.

scot shields has a very lincecum type delivery, the closest ive seen. think lil kids should try and mimic him if anyone. hes got that lincecum jump but puts alot less stress on his body, throws about 93-96 with a freakin hammer of a curve. but im sure you all already knew that