Hey all -
My dd is 11 and is finishing up her first full year of travel and it's been a great year! I'm writing because I've seen something recently that is confusing me with her change up. For pretty much all of the spring and most of the fall nobody could hit her change when she threw it close to the zone. Recently, though, more people are hitting it, not hard, but it seems very strange and I'm wondering if because of her fb speed now, and the fact that very few are able to catch up to it, if when the change comes, and they swing it's helping them out by allowing them to catch up.
She throws a very nice flip change that comes in at around between 36 and 38 mph and there is no arm speed change. Her fastball is between 49 - 51. Most of the time batters are way late on the FB but when the CU comes on 0 -2, 1 - 2 and even early in the count sometimes, they can hit it. Now, when she came into the TB circuit her speed was between 45 - 47 and change was 35 - 36ish. Do you think the difference in speed is a reason this could be happening? Obviously now a lot of teams know she has the change and in those obvious counts if she hangs it in the zone they could just be getting lucky, but how then, do we fool people with it? On Sunday we got behind in the first inning when they got two hits off change ups and then the #4 hitter hit one down right foul line.
So we went away from the change and they couldn't catch up to her. She probably only threw 2 or 3 more in the next 6 innings.
My question after all that info that may or may not have been helpful is this: Because most of the batters she is facing are overmatched by her speed, is there even a need to use the CU other than to help her develop it. Are we helping the batters that swing way too late, or don't swing at all when she throws it now? We have state tournament this weekend and will likely see that team again in the finals or semis as well as another team that is similar and I just want to have a plan in place. We are working on getting her more confident with her drop ball but the change has so often been a great out pitch for her it seems a shame to leave it in her bag.
Thanks in advance for any advice!