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Thread: Fastball Grips and different results?

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    I can talk softball all day tomzpc's Avatar
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    Default Fastball Grips and different results?

    My 12yo DD still relies mostly on her fastball since she rarely gives up hits in tournaments because of her speed and natural movement. She does have a good changeup and has been working on a rollover drop which works well as long as she keeps the ball down.

    Recently in one of our practices i told her to just mess around with different grips and pressure points on her fastball to see what she could come up with. We already know that her two-seam breaks sharply away from a RH batter.
    Anyway, yesterday while practicing she throws me a fastball that literally has a fall-off-the-table break a few feet before the plate. I ask her what she did and apparently she placed three fingers across two sets of seams. I think(correct me if I'm wrong) that this would be similar to a four seam fastball? Anyway, she kept throwing it and damned if the ball wasn't dropping better than she gets with her rollover about half the time, which she hasn't come close to mastering however.

    Wondering if this is the expected break for this pitch and if anyone has some other fastball grips that turn into cutters, drops etc.

    Thanks folks

    Tom

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    Certified softball maniac Ken B's Avatar
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    LHP or RHP? Sounds like she discovered a peel drop. Can you explain a little more about placing her fingers across two sets of seams? Stripe the ball and compare rotation betwen her FB and the new pitch. My guess is the new spin is 12/6 and straight online with the target. More fingers on the ball is also associated with a slower speed, which give gravity and spin more time to work.

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    Super Moderator Amy in AZ.'s Avatar
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    I think she discovered the peel drop. But, hard to say w/o really seeing it.

    oops. I hadn't refreshed the page and KenB already answered.
    MTR - A foul ball is a foul ball. Nothing else, just a foul ball.

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    I can talk softball all day tomzpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenB View Post
    LHP or RHP? Sounds like she discovered a peel drop. Can you explain a little more about placing her fingers across two sets of seams? Stripe the ball and compare rotation betwen her FB and the new pitch. My guess is the new spin is 12/6 and straight online with the target. More fingers on the ball is also associated with a slower speed, which give gravity and spin more time to work.
    She's a righty. What she did is grip the ball with three fingers as she usually does. Her regular fastball she grips the top of the "c" in the stitching with the pads of her three middle fingers. In other words, a normal grip. For the pitch that is dropping she is placing all three fingers across both seams where the seams converge to their closest point. So her fingers are running across the convex seam with pads of her fingers on the concave seam. Hope that makes sense! =)

    I thought that the peel drop was gripped the same as a regular fastball? For awhile we used to work on the peel but then when she started to try the rollover she got better results so that's what she has been throwing in addition to her FB, 2 seam and flip change.

    DD gets some serious movement on her fastballs. Her two seam breaks a ridiculous amount, at least based on what I've seen in our area for 12U. Her last tournament in February (indoors in Lake George area) she threw a 1 hitter with 15 K's and 0 walks. The K's have always been there but her command really seems to be clicking. A year ago she would always walk several batters a game. Obviously dad was super-psyched from that outing. LOL.
    Last edited by tomzpc; 03-25-2013 at 02:16 PM.

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    Banned halskinner's Avatar
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    If you go to the 'sticky' on grips, have her try the 'Flat fingered knuckleball" I could throw this one within a couple MPH of my fastb all. My catchers hated it but it always moved. A little unpredictable but it will dance even at a very fast speed.. I have had students as young as 10 make it dance at fast, slow aand off-speeds.

    Wear a mask whjen she is practiing this one.

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    Certified softball maniac Ken B's Avatar
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    To further clarify, are you saying she's used two fastball grips up to now:
    -A four seam with three fingers on the top of a "C" and
    -A two seam, presumably with the three fingers on top of the horseshoe and the thumb running parallel to the narrows on the other side?

    With the new pitch, she's reaching across to the next seam (If turned toward you more it would be the bottom of a "U"?)

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    I can talk softball all day tomzpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenB View Post
    To further clarify, are you saying she's used two fastball grips up to now:
    -A four seam with three fingers on the top of a "C" and
    -A two seam, presumably with the three fingers on top of the horseshoe and the thumb running parallel to the narrows on the other side?

    With the new pitch, she's reaching across to the next seam (If turned toward you more it would be the bottom of a "U"?)
    Ken, the way you describe them yes. But I never thought of the first as being a four seam (finger on top of the C). If it is then thank you for enlightening me. =)

    Just to be sure we are talking about the same thing if you look at the header for this website her fingers are lying across all four seams and perp. to the seams where the top of the ball is (in the header pick). This is the pitch that is dropping. She is doing nothing else different besides the grip. She has excellent IR release (something we worked on when I discovered this site a few years ago) and her FB sits in the 48-52 range.

    Thanks!

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    I can talk softball all day tomzpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by halskinner View Post
    If you go to the 'sticky' on grips, have her try the 'Flat fingered knuckleball" I could throw this one within a couple MPH of my fastb all. My catchers hated it but it always moved. A little unpredictable but it will dance even at a very fast speed.. I have had students as young as 10 make it dance at fast, slow aand off-speeds.

    Wear a mask whjen she is practiing this one.
    Going to check this out. thanks Hal. Bought a rip-it adult mask last year but being dumb I have yet to wear it because it bothers me. I vowed to start wearing it once I saw the two seam tipping the edge of my glove and shooting past my ear but alas, I'm still being stupid!

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    Certified softball maniac Ken B's Avatar
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    Four Seam:
    Img93.jpg

    Two seam:
    FastballGrip-403x319.jpg

    What I'm envisioning as her dropping grip:
    2013-02-19_Grips.jpg

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    Certified softball maniac Ken B's Avatar
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    Here's another two seam grip:
    mqdefault.jpg

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