Curves, slurves, and sliders are helpful but are not nessecary. The forkball, splitter, and knuckleball work very well if you can throw them. The change up can be your best friend. I throw mine similarly to a fastball but with a diff grip, and it moves like crazy, so much that varsity pitchers have asked how I threw my curve wanting to know how I got that movement. Im open to show you what I do. However, this is not what your question is, so back on topic.
I personally don’t have much luck with those pitches either. My self taught slider gets good sharp movement, but hurts my UCL. I like the slurve, although miss by close to a foot sometimes, so I forgot about that. The curve? I occasionally hung one… Occasionally eventually being 80%. That’s not acceptable, now is it?
I played around with it (curve). I had used a tradional grip, and just tried to get my fingers in front, which wasn’t working. I then tried actually turning my hand, so my thumb went to the top. Better, but I didn’t like the feel of the pitch. I then used a 2 seam FB grip, and applied a LOT of pressure on the ball with my middle finger. Looked pretty nice, consistent drop, decent control. I still didn’t like the exact feel. Not sure why, it’s very likely I will go back but meh.
One fateful day, warming up, I was messing around with a knuckleball grip. I tried pulling down on the ball through release. I threw a perfect knuckleball. I tried it again. This time, the ball spun foward, slowly. Right as it reached my target, it died. All I did was add a little pressure to my pointer, middle, and ring finger. When I do this, my fingers extending give the ball a slow top spin. The ball dies at the wry end. I tried to throw it from the end of the mound and it doesn’t move. I walk back (off the mound) and it drops crazily, meaning it has late movement. The best part? Itd hard to eff it up. I start the ball at my chest height and drop it into the dirt. When I do eff if it? The ball moves laterally, still. It never goes straight. I’ve never thrown it in a game, although I have high hopes for this spring.
Still with me in my BORING narrative? Hope so. Hope I made how to throw these different forms clear, if not, tell me and I’ll make sure to shorten it. My narrative was so if you had similar results as me.
Now, the spiked curve, or so I call it. This is what people call a knuckle curve I believe. Hold like a 2 seam FB, and curl your pointer finger up, so your nail and the joint next to it are on the ball. The other joint will appear to make a spike. When you throw this pitch, flick your wrist down. You should get decent break at the end of the path.
Good luck, tell me how it goes! If you have any questions tell me, as I have turned off my phone a couple times in writing this, so it may be rather ambiguous.