Pitching is a complex area of the game. It was never a matter of "just throw strikes!" But while the new talk is about keeping it simple, that only works for the young journeyman pitcher who throws an occasional inning or two, and for the coach who can only devote some of his time to pitching, because his team's hitting and fielding and base-running also need work.
Any pitcher committed to his craft, with aspirations for varsity, college or pro ball, needs to know more that what a typical coach may have time to explain in a few practices. The level and detail of instruction has to notch up. Difficult enough. Plus, it seems there are as many pitching theories as there are pitching coaches.
Official Rules amended for 2013.
Faking a throw to 3rd is now a balk. If you step towards the bag, you must throw. And you cannot throw over without stepping first. (Same as to 1st base.) Unless your league rules except you from the OBR Balk rule, it should be called.
In an effort to break down the science, yet leave room for some discussion of alternatives, the pitching directory on WebBall has been split into aspects of mechanical delivery, practice routines, pitch selection, etc., starting with essentials. We will continue to add new discoveries as they are tested and proven where it counts - on the diamond.
What you absolutely need to know.
This section brings together pages that will help you understand what, in our view, matters most about pitching ...leading off with a guest article about pitching absolutes, followed by critical information about proper management of young arms.
In 2003 WebBall launched a re-education on how we pitch and instruct. What began as a page of random thoughts, continued through 2005-2007 into a complete lesson plan with many new ideas. We continue to evolve that lesson series, the latest additions in late 2010 with more coming in 2011.
But pitching is more than throwing, so in mid-2009 we also introduced our lesson series on Batter Deception.
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For the longest time, we put the priority in pitching instruction on mechanics. In the process of rebuilding the site and a review of all we knew - or thought we knew - we realized that there are some pitching essentials that must come first, even before a detailed breakdown of mechanics. You can, of course, go to mechanics first but we think you should start with the pages on the right.
These are the events which inspired our own re-education on pitching. 3 times we invited leading proponents of conflicting pitching styles to share their opinions with WebBall visitors who would then get to vote for the approach they most agreed with. The voting is done, the results are in ... not that popularity is always the best barometer of what's right or wrong. All challenge articles express the opinions of the authors (and voters) and do not necessarily reflect the approach recommended by WebBall.
Click highlighted days to view events. Click > to see next month.
Photo Credits: Ryan Meikle for his son's very determined look; pitcher in red, also from the 2012 photo contest.
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