Why is velo such a big deal these days and in general for pitchers. Why would coaches want a guy who can throw over 90 but has little to no control in some senses etc. Perhaps I am wrong in this but had it in my mind.
Why would coaches want a guy who can throw over 90 but has little to no control in some senses etc. Perhaps I am wrong in this but had it in my mind.
This is not the norm - but in rare instances, of those who have little, if any, experience in the coaching ranks.
Now depending on the strata of the game - perhaps throwing like a howitzer is seen as a good thing. But lacking control and purpose, is a game loser. I’ve sat through amateur games where this has been the case. After rounding the bases and watching batter after batter, just stand in the box and wait out ball count after ball count… then “take your base,” this bream-bullet thing gets to be old news real quick.
Perhaps it’s most to do with being able to coach and train for accuracy, but velocity mostly seems to be a “you have it or you don’t” kind of thing for some coaches. A + fastball only matter if you can control it. If a pitcher throws 99 and misses twice and must throw another fastball for a strike to get back into the count, MLB hitter can hit 99 when they know it’s coming and are looking only in their happy zone.
Also, the way the pitching strategies have changed over the past decade. Starters are only pitching 5-6 innings (twice through the order) then the bullpen takes over. If you have 2-3 guys that throw 100 miles per hour for strikes, it makes it easier to hold a lead. In order to create a bullpen like that, you need to find those top velocity project-type guys and see if they develop.
Is movement and change of velocity more important than pure velocity if the pitcher can locate every pitch?
Trevor Hoffman comes to mind… he had a lumbering straight fastball that topped out at 88 - 90 but his change up was around 68 - 74 and was devastating to hitters.
It’s like being 7 ft in basketball. You will get multiple chances to fail. Every coach thinks that they can teach/coach you to throw accurately.