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50mph or Bust

Apr 12, 2019
21
3
As the dad of a pitcher with average velocity, I feel you. When it comes to speed my DD is a hard gainer. She’s only about 5’4”, 120 lbs. at 14yo. Done long toss and other speed drills. Physical maturity has helped and I hope will help some more. We’ve not really worked the strength and conditioning part of it yet. Even so, I am not sure my DD will ever break the 60mph barrier. We are working hard to optimize her mechanics, but...

After sweating it quite a bit (and there are still days that I find myself saying WTF), I’ve decided to focus on my daughter’s strengths as a pitcher. She is a control pitcher with very good and increasing command of the ball and has the ability to keep the ball down and change speeds, inducing a lot of weak contact. Would she be better if she cruised at 55mph+ rather than 50-52mph? No doubt. But she is what she is and she is pretty effective at a relatively high local/regional level. We’ll keep chipping away at velocity while we keep enhancing the strengths she does have.

Based on the video, I think your DD looks good. I think I see a couple of things in her mechanics that, if addressed, should allow her to pick up some velocity (along with her just getting more mature physically):

1. She looks like she is bowing at her push off rather than getting into a sprinters lean. Better drive off the rubber could add velocity. Her knee should be 2 or 3” in front of her toe as starts to drive off.

2. I think her arm looks pretty straight as it comes around the circle. Better bend in her arm (target is 135 degrees) would lead to better arm whip and higher velocity. This is an issue my DD also has and we are working on.

3. It’s a little hard to tell, but it looks like her arm is also sliding through rather than getting a good brush trigger. Better brush (combined with better arm bend) should also help increase her velocity.

Two cents worth.

Comments appreciated!

She too may never pitch over 60mph and I prefer not to sweat it either. I just fear at some point the game will outgrow her and it would be a sad day should that happen. I've often said watching her pitch is the most beautiful thing I've seen, because it allows her to be someone on the field that she isn't anywhere else. A leader. An opportunity to show others that pressure isn't a limiting factor, but something that builds strength. Knowing that, I'll continue to support her however possible.
Much of what you pointed out, we're both well aware of and those deficiencies are likely keeping her from meeting her targets.

Pitchin' ain't easy.

If it were, everyone would do it.
 
Hardest thing for a pitcher dad to do is wait for her to grow. However that’s part of it. Speed comes from the lower half. Is she fast on the bases? Do sprint training jump rope look up videos of how to sprint faster. The faster and more explosive she becomes the faster she will pitch. Keep working on timing and FSR but be patient she still has to grow. Good luck
 
Apr 12, 2015
569
43
@fistafury17
This isn't rocket science. Your DD has a fundamental flaw in her motion. She doesn't throw very hard because she has *ZERO* front side resistance. She skips forward. She has developed a nasty habit somewhere, and it is killing her speed.
This is the end of the thread right here. You don't need any more advice or resources. No matter what you do -- drills you try, strength workouts you get her to do, hours of long toss -- her speed will remain low and increase very slowly until her front side resistance problem is corrected. That should be your #1 and only priority right now.

Developing an explosive drive into her FSR should be goal #2.

Correct those two things and her velocity will explode.
 
Apr 12, 2019
21
3
This is the end of the thread right here. You don't need any more advice or resources. No matter what you do -- drills you try, strength workouts you get her to do, hours of long toss -- her speed will remain low and increase very slowly until her front side resistance problem is corrected. That should be your #1 and only priority right now.

Developing an explosive drive into her FSR should be goal #2.

Correct those two things and her velocity will explode.
This got a little off target. My struggle stands with the ultimatum set a few months ago and my concern over getting tattooed and/or sacrificing mechanics trying to get her pitches to work.
I appreciate all the pitching advice and it supports much of which we already know. Old habits are sometimes hard to break and other times she'll work out a flaw in her mechanics only to expose another or bring back one I thought we'd never see again. It's just as frustrating to her as me, but she keeps working. Maybe not as hard as I'd like her to, but it's her choice not mine. All I can do is support her.
One new thing she's been working on is long toss this summer and has improved from throwing from in front of 2nd to somewhere behind. Maybe she's already pitching 50mph based on the long toss chart posted on another thread. I just think the speed looks slow, but she is throwing harder than 90% of the 12u pitchers we've seen this year.
I just read a post somewhere Amanda Scarborough suggested working on improving defensive skills so maybe find time to work on that this off season.
In the end, I'll continue to read through an entire post before I tell the entire group they shouldn't continue to post in a thread because I have just solved the problem.

When you're finished here, please reach out to US Dept of Education and tell them what to do so our kids can go back to school.
 
May 23, 2015
885
63
Sluggers got it. Watch your daughter and the other pitching. Watch your daughter blow through her plant whereas the other girls very solid. The energy your daughter leaks could be going into the ball

@fistafury17

We've disappeared into a speed trap. No matter what anyone says, your DD is going nowhere throwing 45MPH at 14U.

This isn't rocket science. Your DD has a fundamental flaw in her motion. She doesn't throw very hard because she has *ZERO* front side resistance. She skips forward. She has developed a nasty habit somewhere, and it is killing her speed.

Simple example: Suppose you put a brick on the dashboard of your car, and you want the brick to go through the windshield. Are you going to come to a slow stop or are you going to slam on the brakes? Basically, pitching is momentum transfer....the body goes in a nice straight line toward the target, then the body stops and the arm continues moving.

Your DD's body needs to stop moving forward after release. Rick Pauly did a whole thread about this: https://www.discussfastpitch.com/threads/front-side-resistance.19828/

Here is Samantha Show. Look at her footwork. She isn't moving forward, and she is throwing 65MPH.

 
Apr 12, 2015
569
43
Sluggers solved the "problem", not me, so I'll let him contact the US Dept of Education.

Your concern about an ultimatum was addressed on Post 10.

Best of luck to you.
 
Apr 20, 2015
457
43
If she's throwing harder than 90% of the 12u pitchers in your area then don't worry about your ultimatum and let her move up to 14u and figure you learned something about setting hard lines

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk
 

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