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Comparing Videos of Elite Pitchers

FJRGerry

Abby's Dad
Jan 23, 2009
202
0
Collegeville, PA
A few years ago when I first started watching and analyzing elite pitchers (mostly watching the college softball world series) I noticed different pitchers had different yet similar mechanics, especially with their follow throughs. Back then I didn't realize there were so many variations not only due to different individual styles, but because different pitches were being thrown, but now I do. What this all boils down to is how beneficial is it to compare elite pitchers unless they are all thowning the same pitch? If I watch Jenny Finches hips at release and note they're mostly open, yet Ueno's are mostly closed what does it mean since since Finch is throwing a rise while Ueno is throwing a curve?
 

sluggers

Super Moderator
Staff member
May 26, 2008
5,905
83
Dallas, Texas
About 90% of the pitching motion is the same no matter what pitch is thrown. (Obviously--if each pitch was different, then the batters would learn the cues for the pitches). Most beginning and intermediate pitchers struggle with arm position, leaning forward, leg drive, and hip closing. Those kind of general details are demonstrated time and time again by the elites.

On the other hand, release and follow-through are directly related to the specific pitch being thrown as well as the the pitcher's unique abilities and body. So, it is really tough to find something in those areas that is more than a curiosity.

You pointed out that Finch, a rise ball pitcher, leaves her hips open longer on all of her pitches than Uneo. But, both pitches do leave the hips open long enough to get the arm by the hip.

The key is knowing what is part of the general pitching motion and what is part of the specific pitch.
 
I do a lot of video analysis/comparison of elite level pitchers. Most of the top US pitchers and several from top International teams.
If you study them closely from 12 o'clock to just after the ball releases from the fingers you will see surprising similarities. The premotion and motions prior to 12 o'clock have a million variations with some being more out of the norm than others----but as I've seen described before, this is more about style than real substance. It is from 12 o'clock thru release that they all become similar.
Follow throughs can fool many---don't pay much attention to this since the ball has already departed the fingers. Kind of like watching a bowler talk to the ball as it rolls down the alley---humerous in some cases.
Suggestion: minimize the body contortions prior to 12 o'clock and after release. Don't focus on follow through---let the hand and arm go where ever they want to go.
 

sluggers

Super Moderator
Staff member
May 26, 2008
5,905
83
Dallas, Texas
Hey, Rick: When you going to give us a clip of your DD to post in the college video area? We only need about a 30 second clip.

Thanks,

Ray
 

sluggers

Super Moderator
Staff member
May 26, 2008
5,905
83
Dallas, Texas
If you've got a WMV of your DD, that would work. You can send it to me, or you can upload it to share.ovi.com or Youtube.com and then I'll put a link to it.

Thanks,

Ray
 

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