Take a sneak peek under the hood and see how PRO baseball coaches approach youth baseball coaching. It takes a few watches to fully comprehend the beauty of Kershaw’s hook. Notice how the pitch reaches as high as eye-level well off the plate before gracefully falling to the bottom of the outside corner for the called strike on Wilin Rosario.
Younger players also lack the the arm strength and durability to control the forces on the elbow joint during the pitch. Pitching grips for the change up vary, but generally the grip is deep in the fingers, but not in the palm. The grip should pop toss also be very loose, with just enough pressure to make sure it doesn’t fall out of the hand. For pitchers with large hands and long fingers, some prefer to flex the thumb back under the ball more to get the ball down and over the thumb quicker.
In the Little League, it can roughly touch 50 Mph. On the other hand, at the collegiate level, it can be lower than 90 Mph if the stats go to more advanced big league pitches like Major League. Big league pitchers spend far more time preparing to pitch than pitching. Next spring Dana made the starting rotationat AAA Pawtucket Red Sox.
I prefer teaching a standard rotation curve because it allows for faster rotation and therefore the chance for a sharper break. But, more importantly, it’s YOUR responsibility as a coach to teach your kids the proper mechanics of the pitch, and provide them with exercises to condition the elbow and shoulder. Younger kids usually have hands and fingers that are smaller and shorter. On the follow through, collapse the body slightly. Don’t try to get too much backside drive and hip rotation into the pitch.
Let’s take a closer look at the grip, arm action and mechanics of the pitch. Two great pitches is better than five pitches that don’t always work—or that your son can’t throw for strikes 6.5 to 7 out of 10 times. The pitch went from a positive run value in 2014 to negative in the first year of Statcast, and it remained a below-average pitch league-wide for three more seasons.