Velocity and Lying About Velocity

I am a new member. Just to start out, I would like to say I am the father whose son recently signed a National Letter of Intent as a LHP to pitch for a Pac-10 school. I am starting this thread because as I have followed my son from the T-ball level to the college level, I have not only learned a lot about velocity but a lot about the folks who lie about velocity.

Not to say you kind folks lie about velocity!

First, the importance of velocity. Please don’t let anyone tell you that velocity is not the most important aspect of pitching. Without velocity, you don’t have a chance. It is not the show, but it is the ticket to the show. If you don’t have velocity, you eventually will have someone close a door to you. It may not happen at the high school level, the junior college level, or the Division I level, but eventually someone will tell you, “Son, I’m sorry, you just don’t have what it takes.”

There are those that will tell you that command is more important, etc. Well, to have command you undoubtedly have perfected mechanics… and if you have perfected your mechanics you probably have velocity!

Here is a quick story which illustrates what I’m trying to say. When my son was on his official visit, his team buddy was having breakfast with myself, my son and my wife. He commented that the pitching coach at the university had told him that velocity was only #4 on a list which included movement, location and deception. I was surprised by this but took it at face value until the next morning when we were having breakfast again, this time with the pitching coach present. “Hey coach,” the team buddy reiterated, “I told him that velocity is only #4 on the list which includes movement, location and deception”.

“Did you tell him WHY velocity is last on that list?” queried the coach.

“No,” replied a stumped team buddy.

“Because by the time you reach here,” he said, “you better already have it.”

My point is this. Velocity is the most important factor in the sense that it gets you to your goal. It gets you on that mound. You have to have it. But then what?

You better know how to pitch.

I believe that a combination of proper mechanical training (pitching instruction), physical conditioning and long-tossing is the quickest route to gaining velocity. My son has been long-tossing year-round since age 11 and it has not only promoted arm health but has resulted in astounding jumps in velocity each year. He has done this in combination with training to ensure he has mechanically sound arm action.

Second, I would like to talk about lying about velocity. This is an interesting subject to me, and I understand why people like to add a few miles per hour here or there–after all, it seems everyone does it–but my concern is for the younger boys here who may think they just don’t throw hard enough to compete.

My son when he was 11 was told his arm was too weak to compete on a travel team. Like I said, he is now going to be a Pac-10 pitcher! Do not let anyone ever tell you you cannot reach your goal. Even now, my son is 5’10" and 165 lbs. If you saw him you’d never guess he’d be a D1 pitcher. That is, until you saw his fastball.

After my son was told his arm was “too weak” we went straight to work fixing that problem. Until then, we had spent too much time on hitting training and not enough time on long-toss, mechanical work, and general conditioning. He began to throw 5-6x week, year-round, and each year he jumped up higher and higher in velocity while his peers seemed to level off. Now, I supposed this could have happened magically, on its own, but I doubt it. He worked harder than everyone else.

He was recently clocked at 87 on the Stalker, which is about 89 on the Jugs. Which is why I laugh when I see some of the posts on this website… “Hey, I’m 14 years old and throw 86-88… will that get me to college?”

I will tell you that 80-90% of the numbers I read on here from 14-15 year old boys, well their numbers are Junior College numbers! Now, I know they believe what they’re saying but for the most part it is a very big fish story!

Do you want to know what it will take to get to college?

Division I (minimum): RHP/Stalker 84; LHP/Stalker 83.
J.C.: RHP/Stalker 77; LHP/Stalker 75.

I have tracked my son’s progress since age 11. Here are his velocity numbers… and they’re real: Age 12- 60 (Jugs). Age 13- 66 (Jugs). Age 14- 72 (Jugs). Age 15- 78 (Jugs). Age 16- 83 (Jugs). Age 17- 89 (Jugs).
I believe with his work ethic he has a legitimate shot at being 92+ next year, or 90 on the Stalker. That would put him in very elite territory. Any even better, he is a strike thrower with excellent command, movement, deception and mound presence. His pickoff move is one of the best.

It all has come together for Bum, Jr. I believe, for the younger kids reading this post, that if you, too work hard it can come together for you! Just don’t let anyone tell you your present velocity is not good enough. Don’t buy into some of the fish stories! Just keep working hard, and don’t worry about your size, either!

Okay, I’m done now. Sorry for the length of my post, and hope I didn’t get too controversial. My only intent was to let some of the younger boys know to not be intimidated by some of the numbers they see on this website. You’re okay, just keep at it and work at your game. Like my son, if you work hard enough you may be the kid that proved everyone wrong! Don’t forget, too, that some kids mature earlier than others–that was true in my son’s case–and a lot of the kids you think are top players at age 14-15 will be out of the game later. And who knows… you may be the best of them all!

"[i] will tell you that 80-90% of the numbers I read on here from 14-15 year old boys, well their numbers are Junior College numbers! Now, I know they believe what they’re saying but for the most part it is a very big fish story!

Do you want to know what it will take to get to college?

Division I (minimum): RHP/Stalker 84; LHP/Stalker 83.
J.C.: RHP/Stalker 77; LHP/Stalker 75. "[/i]

First welcome to the site, glad to have you, second WAY TO GO for your son, work dedication and passion have paid well for him and your pride is well founded.
I understand what you were saying but I’m looking for the point. I certainly agree with what I’ve quoted from you…it is in my experience also very true. Without velo you should look into either another aspect of the game or another career. My guess is that you are trying to say you cannot hide your velocity and that at some point there will be a reconning…is that it?
I firmly believe as you do that to approach the mound in a less than holistic fashion is counter-productive and likely harmful to future possibilities (Excluding freaks of nature…you know guys like Billy Wagoner etc.). My personal opinion is that we tend to fascinate on our site here with mechanics…at the expense of other portions of the discipline…but ya know it’s like my love of history…you speak to the things you are familiar with…many of our Sr posters are very well versed in mechanics and well, the talk slips back to it as much as they can. I really enjoy their discussions and participate where I think I can make a point. I hope you continue to bring your perspective and please don’t hesitate to bring to the table any pitching discussion you’d enjoy talking about…it may surprise you at the amount of diverse points of view you’ll encounter.
Thanks again and welcome!

Guess the coaches radar gun lies to me.
And so does the other teams.
Odd… :?

[quote=“Jacobs 21”]Guess the coaches radar gun lies to me.
And so does the other teams.
Odd… :?[/quote]

You totally missed the point of this topic.

Bum, Grrrrreat story!

[i]"Jacobs 21 wrote:
Guess the coaches radar gun lies to me.
And so does the other teams.
Odd…

You totally missed the point of this topic. "[/i]

Really…no need to get defensive…you gots what you gots…

I can agree with you in the sense that velocity gets you to a higher level.

Me though I just want to be successful now, I really don’t care if I go pro or not in the future. It would be fun but there are so many other possibilities for a career.

In the sense that it is as you say the most important thing, depends on the situation. Going pro, yeah it matters, pitching successfully at whatever level you’re at, no it is not the most important.

[quote=“Pustulio”]I can agree with you in the sense that velocity gets you to a higher level.

Me though I just want to be successful now, I really don’t care if I go pro or not in the future. It would be fun but there are so many other possibilities for a career.

In the sense that it is as you say the most important thing, depends on the situation. Going pro, yeah it matters, pitching successfully at whatever level you’re at, no it is not the most important.[/quote]

I throw 120mph

Bum,

I thought that was a very thoughtful and informative essay. In part it reflects the way the game has changed.

There were certainly entry level MLB opportunities for soft throwers in the '60s, and maybe some in the '70s, but now it seems that the paradigm has shifted–there are still some soft throwers in MLB, for example, guys who seem to top out at around 82-83 with a good sinker, but my guess is they are there because they first got through the merciless filtering system with something speedier than that when they were coming up. Experience and treachery might sustain your career in ‘old age’ but nowadays you probably do need to have raw speed as a youngster to get your foot in the door at the various levels…


Hey, Spencer, I also throw a baseball at 120 mph on a regular basis.

Normally I would sell my secret for big $$, but I’m going reveal it for free just this once…

  1. Get yourself a designated driver and a decent car.

  2. Hop in the passenger seat, ball in hand.

  3. Instruct your driver to floor it…

  4. Roll down the window.

  5. When the speedo says “60”, let 'er rip–right out the window.

  6. LOL

Good posting guys…

There is alot of truth to your post bum…

Certainly when you get to the higher levels, velocity is extremely important, especially in this day and age. I would also say that being able to pitch and command is of the utmost importance as well. If you throw 95 and can’t hit the strikezone… well, good luck… But if you can have both, you got a shot!

I don’t think it’s a problem teaching kids that velocity is of lesser importance because they haven’t fully grown into their bodies. But as age progresses… LET ER’ RIP!

All technology is out to get me Including my computer He tries to kill me in the middle of the night wait…he’s watching me g2g …AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH :lol:

Grow up kid, if you don’t have anything to contribute then don’t post.

Nice post Hammer, that’s a good mindset to have I think when teaching younger pitchers.

AND THAT GOES UNNOTICED OBVIOUSLY YOU HAVE NO SENSE OF HUMOR :x :x :x :x

[quote="jdfromfla I understand what you were saying but I’m looking for the point.[/quote]

Wow. My point was to believe velocity is important but don’t get discouraged if you don’t have it yet. I was trying to encourage the younger players. I can take criticism but I don’t think I want to be part of a board where you get a slap from the administrator on your first meaningful post.

You can go back to being the expert you are. Please delete my account.

“Wow. My point was to believe velocity is important but don’t get discouraged if you don’t have it yet. I was trying to encourage the younger players. I can take criticism but I don’t think I want to be part of a board where you get a slap from the administrator on your first meaningful post.”

Man am I sorry you feel that way. Sincerly.

First welcome to the site, glad to have you, second WAY TO GO for your son, work dedication and passion have paid well for him and your pride is well founded.
I understand what you were saying but I’m looking for the point. I certainly agree with what I’ve quoted from you…it is in my experience also very true. Without velo you should look into either another aspect of the game or another career. My guess is that you are trying to say you cannot hide your velocity and that at some point there will be a reconning…is that it?

Why did you take any of that as a slap? I agreed with your post and was simply trying to get to the meat of what you meant. Really I am sorry if I offended you in any way. It wasn’t my intention. I am “just” an administrator…which in reality means that …well we used to get heavy spam the had p0rn0 in it and I asked Steven to give me admin rights so I could get rid of it before the kids read it. I claim no particular expertise and really just love baseball and pitching. So if we got off on the wrong foot I apologise…rereading what I responded with…I still don’t understand why you got so upset but I meant no harm at all.
If you key on my name and look at my previous postings you will find that I’m of the same sort of mindset you say you wanted to impart, I don’t think I’ve ever “slapped” anyone for a post or thread.
I welcomed you and encouraged more. Not much more I can say here…except I hope you continue to participate.

“I hope you continue to bring your perspective and please don’t hesitate to bring to the table any pitching discussion you’d enjoy talking about…it may surprise you at the amount of diverse points of view you’ll encounter.
Thanks again and welcome!”

Did you not read this part?

I haven’t seen any pron spam. You must be doing a good job!

You wont find many pitchers that pitch below 80 in the pros…

“You wont find many pitchers that pitch below 80 in the pros…”

Spencer…are you wearing your “Captain Obvious” costume again? 8)

Now that Staven implemented some of his controls you will (I hope) never see that junk on here again.

I didnt know people had such thin skin on the internet… :?

People merge on to the information superhighway expecting it to be all nice but they are in for a suprise! There is a 15 car pileup 2 miles down the road and it is 115 degrees out and your air conditioner just broke!

Ok, misintrepreted. I saw “administrator” and had flashbacks of my old elementary school principal. My bad. I’m not thin-skinned at all and don’t mind some back-and-forth jabs… I just don’t handle authority figures well…
Sorry, don’t have video of my son pitching at this point. I’m not very tech-savvy… just found out yesterday You-Tube was not a television part.