pitches Pitching Articles
Here are some pitching articles on this important pitching velocity topic. This topic is currently open for discussion. You can either comment on the articles below or start a thread in the pitching forums.
by Brent Pourciau · October 30, 2011
Promoting fast post pitching recovery in-season will not only keep a pitcher healthier and happier but it will increase velocity in the long run. If you are a serious pitching machine and you want to make it to the next level then poor nutrition could be what is holding you back.
Pitching at your top velocity is a very intense movement that is performed on average about 75-100 pitches a game, not including practice. Most pitchers lose a lot of muscle mass or weight in-season which not only effects their recovery but their overall performance. If you can prevent losing your lean muscle mass, that you worked so hard to build up in the off-season when in-season, then you will give yourself a major edge over the competition.
I trained with Dan Miceli, who is a 14 year Major League relief pitcher, after my rotator cuff surgery. He was a big lifter and would go into spring training about 35 pounds overweight. This was all muscle mass from his off-season training. He said that the coaches would give him a hard time about his size during spring training and he would always tell them to just give him a few months and it would all be gone again. He was right! Read more
by Brent Pourciau · October 25, 2011
There is no better way to increase pitching velocity than with a simple adjustment in your first move. Your first move begins with your leg lift. There are some major misconceptions with the purpose of your leg lift that need to be addressed before we can make the simple pitching velocity first move adjustments.
Let’s first get some footage of your pitching. Shoot some video of a few pitches of you pitching so we can analyze your first move in increasing pitching velocity. Make sure that this footage is shooting from a side perspective, chest facing the camera like Trevor Bauer here. Once you get your footage onto a computer, you then need to find a video player that will give you the ability to move frame by frame, so we can analyze each frame. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · June 15, 2011
Pitching pain and injury, along with most elbow problems come from overuse and poor mechanics. If we narrow it down to elbow pain then proper pronation is usually the determining factor. Proper pronation of the arm at release is when the thumb finishes down. Notice here in the picture of me in my last minor league season I am finishing with goo pronation.
Improper pronation at release can be the result of poor mechanics and aggressive off speed pitches. For proper pronation to occur in the throwing arm at release the pitcher must extend the arm to release. The improper release of the throwing arm which would prevent proper pronation would be to pull the arm down to release. I find this to be a major misconception in the conventional wisdom of the game. Physics proves that during the velocity phase of the throwing arm, the pivot or elbow, must remain stationary until after release. This means the elbow must extend to release to prevent the elbow from moving down during the throw. This not only supports pitching velocity but protects the elbow from resisting high amounts of deceleration forces. Extending the elbow to release also protects the rotator cuff during the deceleration of the arm. This will allow more of the back muscles to get involved during the deceleration phase. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · May 27, 2011
“Welcome to the 90MPH club,” is the catch phrase that we all would love to hear in our careers. More than likely this is your ultimate goal as a pitcher, because if you make it to the 90MPH Club, then you have put yourself in the recruiting pool for Professional Baseball.
If you have ever been to a MLB tryout Camp then you will hear this phrase a lot, “Throw 90 or go home!” At most camps they are not as blunt but this is what they are thinking when they are holding that gun to your back when you throw your first pitch. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · April 22, 2011
This may be the first sign of the beginning of a new era for baseball. A Danish company called Trackman has planted some 3D Doppler Radar’s in Major League parks across the country and the data is revolutionary.
They can scientifically produce data that shows why two 90 MPH pitchers are not the same. Why one may be seen as having a “Sneaky” fastball when the other is throwing the exact same pitching velocity. This is because this new technology uses distance and speed to measure pitching velocity, instead of only using speed. Therefore, someone throwing 90 mph with a release point that is 53 feet away from the hitter is throwing harder, as perceived by the hitters eye, than the pitcher with the same velocity throwing the ball 55 feet away.
Trackman has determined that the average release point from the rubber for an MLB pitcher is 5.10 feet but some of the “Sneaky” fastball pitchers are reaching release point distances of 7 feet or more. The ESPN Sports Science video about Chapman, which I cover in one of my previous articles, made this same discovery but Trackman is calculating this information on the fly. Based on their data one foot past the average 5.10 feet equals about 2 mph in increase perceived pitching velocity. Trackman feels that this 3D Doppler Radar will eventually make the radar gun, as we know it today, the thing of the past. This is because their data gives an organization a lot more scientific data to evaluate talent than the traditional radar gun. This 3D Radar can also record spin rate of all pitches. Pitchers with higher spin rates have higher strikeout percentages. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · March 30, 2011
If you have not purchased the 3X Pitching Velocity Program, then let me tell you what you are missing out on. High velocity pitchers generate more force production through triple extension during the stride phase of the delivery. Pitchers like Tim Lincecum and Aroldis Chapman have stride lengths around 7.5 feet and stride speeds of around .6 seconds. Chapman is considered the hardest thrower in the league because of out of 25 pitches in a 2010 game, he threw everyone over 100 MPH.
To understand how to implement these velocity components into your pitching delivery we must first define these terms. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · February 24, 2011
Those who lack pitching velocity want to throw more pitches. The problem is this is a double edged sword. When your pitching velocity is poor, and you want to take the easy way out, you opt for ball movement. This involves trying, or successfully learning, offspeed pitches. Here is a list of these type of pitches.
- Circle Change
- The “Volken”
I am not saying that these pitches are junk or a waste of time, because many great pitchers have used them. What I am saying is this is always last resort. Especially when you are young. You should expect your pitching velocity to improve all the way into your 20′s. If you have plateaued, then you need a pitching velocity enhancement program like the 3X Pitching Velocity Program before you need to learn another pitch. Also learning these offspeed pitches have proven to decrease pitching velocity, because if not thrown correctly, it can add more wear and tear to the arm and it also can change your pitching mechanics. I have seen in my career guys loss a few miles per hour because they fell in love with a Forkball, or a Curveball. I am not saying this is the case for everyone but it is the case for most young pitchers. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · November 27, 2010
Recovery can be a pitchers worst enemy or his best friend. If a pitcher is able to recovery faster than the average athlete then he has a significant advantage. The benefits to faster muscle recovery after a workout or game is reduced muscle fatigue which leads to higher velocity and more pitches thrown. Another big benefit is less chance of injury. Therefore the more quickly you can reach full recovery after a performance has a major effect on your success as a pitcher. This is why supplements have become a major part of sports today!
The remedies of today for muscle recovery are continuously improving. There are always new supplements coming out on the market that claim to improve recovery. The hard part is determining the ones that actually work without wasting a lot of time and money. I have put together a list of products and links to purchase these products at amazon.com. This way I will save you time and money. These are products that I used in my career which helped me not only overcome a career ending injury but to reach my velocity goals of 94mph. I am not claiming that these products will do this for you but they will definitely help. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · September 25, 2010
I continue to receive questions on how and why to ice the arm after pitching or throwing the baseball. There is a lot of people who are getting information that icing stops the healing process, so therefore it does not help in recovery. This information is incorrect in my book because I have some very good evidence to back this up and because I always seemed to pay the price when I do not ice after throwing a lot of pitches.
In my career icing always shortened my recovery time. I did continue to test this therapy though. Mainly because it is a pain in the butt to ice your arm after ever game and I also was a little curious as to why we do this.
If someone challenges your opinion on this argument, or you want a final answer, you need to look at the study that the American Journal of Sports Medicine has posted here on Cryotherapy on rats. I know we are not rats but muscularly we are similar.
To prevent your brain from exploding when reading this study I have posted my layman’s explanation below. I hope this helps! Read more
by Brent Pourciau · November 22, 2009
A pitching chart is a very valuable tool for a pitcher and a coach. For the pitcher it shows you your weaknesses and strengths. It tells you what pitches are working on what batters and what pitches are not working on what batters. It also tells you how many pitches you are throwing per inning which is valuable information for your Coach. Your Coach should know your limit and be prepared to rescue you if you are getting close to your redline. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · June 18, 2009
Matsuo T, Escamilla RF, Fleisig GS, Barrentine SW, Andrews JF. Comparison of kinematic and temporal parameters between different pitch velocity groups. Journal of Applied Biomechanics 17(1): 1-13, 2001.
Stodden, DF, Fleisig, GS, McLean, SP, Andrews, JR. Relationship of Biomechanical Factors to Basebal Pitching Velocity: Within Pitcher Variation. Journal of Applied Biomechanics 21(1): 44-56, 2005 Read more
by Brent Pourciau · June 17, 2009
If you haven’t figured it out yet, pitching velocity doesn’t come in a pill. Sorry to bust your bubble but it takes a lot of hard and smart work to develop it. If you are looking to gain 4-5 mph on your fastball then you must work to improve in all facets of pitching. These facets include: Read more
by Brent Pourciau · June 17, 2009
Why waste your time and money on pitching coaches and strength and conditioning when you can get all the velocity you want in a pill?
Do you want to know what it is like to throw 90 plus mph?
Do you want to dominate every batter you face?
Do you want to get drafted in the top round and sign for millions?
Then you do not have to wait any longer? All your dreams will come true in this one pill. Velocity is the latest in medical advancements in the world of genetic therapy. This pill will genetically remodel your body to throw a baseball 90 plus miles per hour. Once you take this pill you will feel a burning sensation in your arm and after 33 seconds your next pitch will exceed 90 mph. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · June 14, 2009
The online world of pitching experts have been throwing around the buzz word “Momentum pitching” recently. This isn’t anything new unless you are up to date on the breakthroughs of pitching science. Pitchers have been trying to find better ways to generate more momentum in their deliveries for years but what is changing is the science behind this matter.
During the prime of the likes of Nolan Ryan, the popular way of generating more momentum back then was the “Stand Tall and Fall” style developed by Nolan Ryan and his pitching coach Tom House, who may have coined the term. This proceeded the popular style of “Drop and Drive” used by the great Tom Seaver. These two styles of pitching are still used today. What is changing is pitching mechanics are evolving from an art form into the world of science. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · June 6, 2009
For all of those pitchers who are trying to develop more separation in back hip to back shoulder, you will only achieve this with explosive triple extension of the drive leg. “Triple Extension” is the extension of the ankle joint, knee joint and the hip flexor. You must perform this in your drive leg so your back hip can open completely to the target. If you keep your shoulders and weight back while aligning your Force Vector and once your Force Vector is linear you perform”Triple Extension,” optimal “Separation” will occur. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · May 9, 2009
There is a lot of controversy around pitchers and icing their arms post game. After surgery I was very strict when it came to icing post game. I know that it isn’t enough for me here to just say that, “Hey, I did it, so you should too.” So, I took some time to research the web and I found several websites reference the work of Dr. Meeusen from Antwerp, where I played some professional baseball. He based his life study around icing as a means to help heal a damaged muscle. His documentation describes how ice can be effective and where it can cause problems.
Research by Dr. Meeusen on Icing a Pitchers Arm
by Brent Pourciau · May 5, 2009
There are two forces that add velocity to a pitch:
- Rotational Torque
For momentum to effectively transfer to the ball, the pitcher must use all rotational pivots in order from the bottom up. The hips must rotate before the shoulders and the shoulders before the arm internally rotates. For this to happen effectively these pivots must be free to rotate completely. Notice the picture of Tim Lincecum at the bottom of the page (Tim Lincecum is a phenom because of his size and ability to reach his top velocity continuously.) Notice in the picture his weight is slightly leaning to his left. This would be like tilting an open door backwards so the open door slams closed due to gravitational forces. This gravitational pull is helping to create full range of motion in Tim Lincecum’s hips and shoulders at front foot strike. If he or the door was tilted the opposite way then these gravitational forces would work against his momentum by decreasing full range of motion in his rotational pivots. Using the force of gravity to increase the range of motion in your hips and shoulders will have a significant effect on your velocity. This is a big reason why Tim Lincecum can throw so hard for his size. He is working with the forces of nature to generate his power. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · April 16, 2009
This question can stir up a big argument but there is only one answer. The arm does not generate the velocity. It only guides the pitch. Therefore the arm must follow the body and does not come into play until the body has done its job. This was the conclusion of a study performed by the famous Dr. Jobe back in the 1980′s. Here is the actual result from the case study:
by Brent Pourciau · March 22, 2009
Most of the articles on this site pertain to pure pitching velocity but what is the value of top velocity when the pitcher can not locate his pitch? Zero is the answer. There is no value in pitching velocity that doesn’t end in a strike. I have witnessed many hard throwing pitchers or should I say throwers in my career who could not hit “the broad side of a barn.” These guys never made it anywhere because of this major problem of poor accuracy. The problem with coaching accuracy is that most pitching coaches over do it. They create pitchers who look like they should be throwing darts instead of fastballs. This is why I focus on velocity first and then I teach my pitchers how to control it. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · March 8, 2009
I get this question a lot, “the windup vs the stretch, what is better?” The problem is the windup is almost sacred to the game of baseball but it really has no purpose besides a kind of confidence builder on the mental state of the pitcher. The windup represents the old style of pitching from back in the day when the pitchers would use the windup to get their arms moving faster like in the video clip here of Dizzy Dean. Now that we have learned that doing this is destructive to pitching velocity, the windup has become just an extra step to throwing in the stretch. Read more