Talk to me about how to help my kids transition to the big field. In the few bullpens at 60’6" we have thrown, there is a huge difference. For those of you who have gone through this before, what are your best tips?
I learned to just let him bull pen, the more the better , he will work out accuracy on his own. Only step in for mechanical fixes
It depends a little bit on what distance you’re making the jump from. Going to 60’ from Little League majors distance of 46’ is a big jump whereas making the jump from a travel ball distance of 50’ or a junior high distance of 54’ isn’t as bad.
Regardless, I think it’s best to make the transition slowly to avoid getting the pitcher into a deficit - epecially if the pitcher is starting high school because the high school season does not leave time to recover from a deficit. Start with a couple short (about 25 pitches) bullpens per week. Increase the number of pitches each week. Play catch on non-bullpen days and even do some long toss. But keep it limited at first and slowly increase the number of throws over time. Plan to spend 6-8 weeks making the transition.
When I was in my last year of Little League, I used to practice pitching from a 60’ mound about once a week. I started out throwing 40 pitches at about 75%. After about 4 weeks I was throwing 30 at 75% and 10 at 100%. I continued like that for the rest of the summer. I started playing fall baseball near the end of summer from 60’ and was allowed to pitch 2 innings each game. I could throw at 100% from then on out and never looked back. However, I watch some of my younger friend’s games who are still in Little League and I wish I could toe the rubber just one more time from 46’.
“He could throw a pork chop past a hungry wolf.”
Distance needs to be reached in progression. Let the results dictate when distance is added. With my son, I didn’t stop at 60’6". I took him to 63’ (without his knowledge I altered home plate by six inches every week.) At first he felt he lost velocity and tried harder until he felt he was up to normal velocity. When he steps on the rubber in a game he feels he has more pop. It also made him more accurate because mistakes are magnified over greater distances. He found he was more precise at regulation distance. To this day, he starts at around 70’ (he has the catcher 10’ behind the plate) and works in to 60’6" before every game.