Trouble With Both Breaking Balls


#1

My Curveball has been hanging a lot lately and my slider isn’t good. All I really have to work with are my changeup, my four seam fastball, sinker, and my cutter.


#2

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.


#3

Thank you cursed.legend, but sorry it didn’t help :sweat:. I can throw knuckleballs, splitters, and forkballs, but they are bad pitches for me. Well the Forkball is ok but not worth it and adds stress to the elbow and arm.


#4

Have you tried the curve variations? Definitely try those, and invent your own. Play around with grips, and how you throw the ball.


#5

I might, thank you.


#6

This whole breaking ball inconsistency thing is a bit strange because my curveball is usually great, but lately it has done less breaking and more hanging. My Slider is bad except sometimes it’s decent, but I want to work on it.


#7

You are 15YO- why don’t you master 3 pitches. You mention six pitches in your OP. Very good MLB pitchers use 4 pitches, with some variations on them. You need focus and repetition.


#8

Great point. And guess how many pitches the best closer of all time used…


#9

I agree.
Trying different pitches is fun. But, I have seen, with my own eyes, exactly one guy that had mastery of a high number of pitches. Trevor Bauer was guy. Even someone with his level skill, obtained through very hard work, wants to tweak a pitch he spends months working on it. Working on grip, videoing the pitches, using the grip playing catch ect. For most guys going from three pitches to four is a major thing.
FB, CH is still the bread and butter for almost everyone and for a reason. Curveball, slider is usually the third. A fourth pitch I love is a variation on the FB, cut FB for example. Gives a different speed element and a different kind of movement than a breaking ball.
Its cool to experiment with different grips and you may stumble upon one that is a great pitch for you. But, having 6 or 8 different pitches…yeah, usually not happening.


#10

Well I mastered my fastball and my changeup. My Curveball too for the most part except when it’s loopy.


#11

Mastered? You can throw it where you want, any count, with movement, every pitch (98% of the time)?


#12

ya


#13

You have a vivid imagination.


#14

dude…no


#15

This is the problem with answering questions with kids…and I mean no offense by this. They perceive things differently.
This is why, in the threads about pitches, I have said even pro guys take months and months working on a pitch. Most kids want to try a grip, throw it for a strike a couple of times and say they have it down.
There is a reason most guys, college and pro operate with no more than 3 or 4 pitches, they are hard to really be consistent with, let alone master.
Hitting a spot 98% of the time would make someone one of the best, if not thee best, control pitcher on the planet. Pro pitchers that are paid millions of dollars miss spots and make mistakes.
Im not saying this to bash on anyone or make anyone feel badly. The first step in improvement is really knowing, having an honest assessment, of where someone is starting.


#16

@BlueJaysFan2000 BlueJaysFan2000 I would bet that your bullpens lack proper focus. I bet you throw every pitch you own during each and every bullpen. You will never improve or master anything if you structure your bullpen this way. Search the site for my posts about structured bullpens and you will get better results that will last.

The simplest pen is 1 pitch to 1 location repeated 20 times charting your deviation from intended target. The next pen do the same thing and track your deviation. Keep doing this until your deviation is within an acceptable range…then try to improve on that for the rest of your natural life. Maybe in a decade, you will “master” that pitch. If this seems like an exaggeration to you, then you need to re-evaluate whether or not you are serious about mastering pitches.