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Thread: Strikes vs speed 10U

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    Checking out the clubhouse Rmc1981's Avatar
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    Default Strikes vs speed 10U

    Ok so we are drafting today for our 10U rec league. Defensively and offensively, I'm confident we will dominate given the girls I'm returning and adding in a few more. It's the pitching I'm worried about.

    So here is my question:

    My two pitchers had been going to the same coach. His philosophy was, explode off the mound and throw hard and fast, he will work on the accuracy all along the way and it will follow. Not a bad plan if you have time and aren't under pressure to pitch in games immediately.

    Other coaches I've talked to, say slow down and throw strikes. Get your mechanics right and then we will speed it up. This seems to make more sense during season as we are entering now.

    I don't have an ace pitcher right now. We are just making the jump to 10U. I'm pretty sure my girls could slow down and throw twice the number of strikes, but is that wise?

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    Out on good behavior redhotcoach's Avatar
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    IMO....of course coaches want young girls to slow down and throw strikes, and most pitching coaches know pitchers take time to develope, so throw hard and accuracy will come.
    So you face the delema that 10u coaches have faced since the ball was invented.
    And who decides what is right and what is wrong?

    I will say that "slow, get your mechs right, then we will speed up" is NOT what I believe is the best for a developing pitcher.
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    Softball Junkie humpty's Avatar
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    Speed first. Better long term for kids and in a year you'll have dominant pitchers. Suck it up the first season of 10s take your lumps and next year they'll be great. Same with hitting teach em to swing hard from the get go.

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    Certified softball maniac quincy's Avatar
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    Sounds like you think you have a good team. Why not let them throw hard and see how it goes. Adjust individual pitchers after 5 or 6 games if you need to. Better yet have them talk to their PC about throwing more strikes since the season start, again only if they need to.

    Edit to add: Fastest pitcher on DD’s 10U Team did not know what a strike was, slowing her down only made it worse.
    Last edited by quincy; 01-26-2013 at 10:21 AM.

  7. #5
    RayR
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    My take on pitching is if they learn to throw underhand correctly from the start there is no need to decide on speed v strikes....you get enough of both for the 10u level....

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    Certified softball maniac chinamigarden's Avatar
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    I want to know how slowing down will give them the proper mechanics?

    Explode off the mound and throw hard and fast, thats what I wanted to see and what my dd did. If you think there is pressure to win at 10u try 14u when you were taught to slow down.

    My dd went the go fast and let accuracy come to you, another girl in our organization went the slow down and throw strikes route. Even at 14u when we played her we could see she still was more concerned with accuracy then speed. Last year they played together on the HS team, my dd still will walk 3 a game and the other girl didn't walk anyone all year. Of course its hard to walk anyone when you never pitch.

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    Softball Junkie David Carter's Avatar
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    At 10U don't just think you have 2 pitchers. The way our rec league has started winning is by developing pitchers that are 9yo. I would have my pitchers either come early or stay late for maybe 15 to 20 minutes if it is at all logistically possible (I try not to use regular practice time so we can work on other things). Then what you also do is have girls that have an interest in becoming pitchers come for the extra time as well, the important thing with these girls is to give them practical easy drills they can do at home like throwing into their glove or throwing a sock at a wall or simply leaping and dragging without a ball emphasizing proper mechanics.

    Another thing not to overlook is at 10U rec you have just as many runs scored on the catcher, even if she can not throw anybody out if you have a catcher that won't let all those wild pitches get by her and all the base runners stop at third that alone will win you a few ballgames, if she can throw a few out at third without throwing it into left field that would be a big bonus.

    As for the 2 pitchers you have ready to go now I would not have them just slow down and throw strikes if I could help it...is it painful to watch the number 9 hitter on the other team who is so scared she will never even dream of taking the bat off her shoulder and if she does has zero chance of hitting the ball walk down to first...yes it is but that is just the price you pay for developing pitchers. The other thing to watch for is these pitchers should not be throwing hard just for the sake of throwing hard they need to be practicing good mechanics don't let them just throw hard make sure they are throwing correctly.

    Unless you run into some powerhouses you can let these girls start pitching probably in a month or so. If your league has five run rule I put them in when there is 15 minutes or so left and we are up by 6 or more so there is little to no pressure
    Last edited by David Carter; 01-26-2013 at 10:40 AM.

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    Certified softball maniac Perfect Circle's Avatar
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    Sounds like you don't even have any options. You are buying into the norm. If you can see what will be needed in the future, then you can see this. In the future the speedsters will be facing girls that practice hitting year round on machines, and they will just time them out, so then they will be getting prompted into movement , and CUs. What you need is a third pitcher. One who can throw strikes...Spot,Spin & then Speed. This is your CU. Don't be scared to put the ball in play...get busy teaching defense.

    Also get you a #2 catcher for this girl, and keep them as a team...one that can't really jump 9' in the air, or block, she will look real good with the 3rd pitcher... your other catcher will be needing rest, to recoup, when you start trying to tell her a error is a pass ball. Have the B team set the inning out together to get warmed up before they go in. Don't bring them to finish an inning.

    When the walk fest is on, and you can see its going to be another year before the speedster can really make a contribution to the team, instead of receiving everyone's formative years dedicated to their support. Have a Plan B.
    Last edited by Perfect Circle; 01-26-2013 at 11:08 AM.
    Warning !!! Proud Dad: views expressed are only experiential experimenting 8-14u... do not try at home !!!!!!alone
    PS: I highly value cinematography and aesthetics and am not a DFP-certified hitting guru. Not yet, that is! 740-500-0157

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    Super Moderator Amy in AZ.'s Avatar
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    My students are 75% the age that you are talking about. They will never hear me say "Slow down." I don't say much about speed. I teach control. Good mechanics and repetition, is what makes them pitchers. Never ask a girl to try and aim the ball down the middle, she will get drilled in the face.

    Don't focus on wins. Don't let it creep into your head. Do this for the girls and rejoice when one of them "gets it."
    MTR - A foul ball is a foul ball. Nothing else, just a foul ball.

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    Certified softball maniac Perfect Circle's Avatar
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    I agree with Amy... I'm know your job as a coach won't come into play, as you must come highly recommended by the PC, and hosting two of his girls, which is unusual around here for rec. So validating your record isn't the issue. But it is important that the girls learn to win graciously. If your below 500% and you start getting better, and getting some wins you don't want your girl getting too over exuberant, and doing celebrations that antagonize the other team. The best way to teach gracious winning, is by wining often. Also Parents love it, as they are your primary sponsors right now. If losing to much becomes an issue, just remember that there are guys like me that tell their DD that they didn't lose, their Coach just got out Coached...don't worry he'll be better because of it the next game :{))
    Warning !!! Proud Dad: views expressed are only experiential experimenting 8-14u... do not try at home !!!!!!alone
    PS: I highly value cinematography and aesthetics and am not a DFP-certified hitting guru. Not yet, that is! 740-500-0157

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