Ultimately, your pitching coach is your boss. If you piss him off, there is a good chance you may be out of a job. The problem is if he is a BAD pitching coach, he could jeopardize your career. It has happened many times before. The key is to keep the coach happy, while you find the best support you can, to help influence your career.
The purpose of this article is not to turn you against your coach, it is to give you some options on how to deal with the situation that a bad pitching coach could put you in.
In this article, I will help you understand what I mean by a bad pitching coach, how to please them while still improving your career.
What makes a BAD pitching Coach?
Someone who has no experience in playing the position at the top levels of the game, or someone who has no certified education of how to coach the position.
How can a BAD pitching Coach effect a pitcher?
Pitching takes a tremendous amount of muscle coordination. The body must naturally understand how to build maximum momentum and torque, to deliver an above average fastball to a specific location. It is a pitching Coaches job to guide the pitcher to reaching his athletic potential. This takes an expert understanding of the position and the athlete. If the pitching Coach is far from an expert then the chances of him being a guide to the pitchers athletic potential, is very poor. This could be detrimental to a young pitchers career because promoting bad mechanics, due to the lack of experience or education, will decrease velocity and cause injury. It happened to Me.
What are the signs of a BAD pitching Coach?
- No experience in the top levels of the game.
- No certified education in the world of pitching and athletic training.
- A poor understanding of Physics Driven Pitching Mechanics.
- A poor understanding of the physiology and psychology of his pitchers.
- Over throwing his staff of pitchers.
- Discouraging his pitchers from using a strength and conditioning program.
- Forcing his pitchers to throw more breaking balls than fastballs.
- Using Long Distance running to build endurance in his pitchers.
- Excessive amounts of long toss.
- A poor warm-up and dynamic stretching routine.
- Not educating his pitchers on proper athletic nutrition and rehabilitation.
- Not educating his pitchers on the mental game.
- Uses a lot of poor conventional wisdom to coach his pitchers.
What are the signs of POOR conventional wisdom of pitching mechanics?
These are old techniques of pitching, that have been proven throw science, to decrease velocity or cause injury.
This would be Coaching the pitcher to:
- Take the ball out of the glove and reach it to the sky.
- Get into the T position. Glove hand to target and ball to center field.
- Pull the glove hand in hard to your body, while pulling the throwing arm down to throw.
- Kick the back leg up high after release. He may even use a chair for the pitcher to kick his leg over, after release, to force this bad pitching mechanic.
- Keep your landing leg bent at release. Do not let it straighten!
- Pull your head down hard during pitch.
- Wipe your arm.
- Slam your chest into your landing leg.
- Move your arm faster.
- Drive your glove hand to the target.
How to PLEASE a BAD Pitching Coach?
I will be the first to tell you that this isn’t easy. Due to the high percentage of BAD pitching Coaches in all levels of the game, ever pitcher will deal with a BAD pitching Coach a few times to many in their career. The best way to deal with a BAD pitching Coach, without him having an effect on your career, is not to avoid him but to please him. Here is some TIPS that will help.
- Do whatever he says when he is looking and then do what you think is best when he isn’t looking.
- Study the game, the position, physics driven mechanics and strength and conditioning. Become your Coach.
- Do not let him catch you educating the other pitchers. Especially if he is a HOT HEAD.
- Do not screw around when he is around you.
- Do not talk bad about him to other players.
This is the MOST IMPORTANT TIP:
- You must IMPROVE.
The hardest thing that any pitcher or athlete must learn, is that it is a rare case for you to find a Coach that will propel your career to the top levels of the game. This is because, they are just as concerned about their job as you are about your job. So if you want to make it as a professional one day, you are going to have to knock down a lot of doors. You will always find support but the only person that is going to help you get their is yourself. I will leave you with this quote from Nolan Ryan.
“Pitching in the big leagues is a dream. Preparing to pitch in the big leagues is a nightmare.”
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