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lack of control

Apr 27, 2009
11
0
My 12 yr dd(almost 13) has 1 time max speed of 59 mph, she has been clocked in games from 54 to 57. She has taken lessons for 1 1/2 years and has developed a decent change and we're working on dropcurve and screwball. She has a good number of strikeouts but way too many walks and wild pitches. She is normally low and inside when she is wild. She has grown about 6inches in the last year and seemed to have better control before the growth spurt. Catchers hate catching her and her travel coaches are losing confidence. She looks great at her lessons but it isn't carrying over to her games. Where do i go from here? Keep working with current coach or seek another insructor or just give up on pitching? (frustrated)
 
Jul 16, 2008
1,452
38
Oregon
1st thing is don't get frustrated. Does she really WANT to pitch? Does she practice pitching other than "lesson" days? She is getting to the age where girls that really have the desire will want to practice everyday. I am running into that with my DD. I want her to pitch, and she does to a certain degree, but she lacks the internal drive. I ask her if she wants to practice and if she says no, then we don't (I have always told her that if she doesn't spend the time pitching in practice, then she cannot expect to pitch in games). I don't allow myself to get frustrated (although I think she can make a good pitcher if she would just get out there and throw).
 

halskinner

Banned
May 7, 2008
2,689
0
"She has taken lessons for 1 1/2 years and has developed a decent change and we're working on dropcurve and screwball. She has a good number of strikeouts but way too many walks and wild pitches."

Let me get this straight; she has had an instructor for 1 1/2 years and STILL has major control problems???

Find a different instructor. The one she has now should have figured it all out a long time ago.
 

sluggers

Super Moderator
Staff member
May 26, 2008
5,882
63
Dallas, Texas
Likely, you are now confronting the infamous "puberty pitching problem". When a girl hits puberty, her hips spread and her bosom grows. The hips on a woman end up wider than her shoulders.

One way for pre-pubescent girls to achieve high pitching speeds is to really twist the hips at release. That simply won't work when the hips are wider than the shoulders (the arm would have to circle the hips, causing tremendous left-right control issues).

I have some suspicions about the pitching coach, just as Hal does. A pitcher with good form wouldn't have such severe control problems. Also, her two breaking pitches are two pitches require a lot of hip motion. The drop curve and screwball are easy to throw for a girl using too much hip. Further, the pitching speed borders on unbelievable. Who gave you those numbers? Finch threw 55 MPH at 12 YOA, and you are indicating that your DD is 2 MPH better than her. So, personally, I'm a little suspicious.

Could you post a video of your DD? It would really help to see if this is simply a growing problem or if you've been led down the wrong path by your pitching coach.

Ray


Ray
 
Mar 6, 2009
64
0
If she is looking great at practice/lessons, the problem could also be between the ears or like they are describing where she is reverting back to her habits prior to her growth spurt. Since she throws hard, she also may be over throwing where she is getting in love too much with throwing it by the batters or the radar gun versus getting the batters out by being a smart pitcher.

Bill
 

Amy in AZ.

Super Moderator
May 7, 2008
8,506
48
Tucson
Just from my experience, I wouldn't be practicing any other pitches besides the FB and the change, until she gets her control problem figured out.

Could you post a video?

A little OT, but I tell parents that they can tell that the DD doesn't want to practice or play, when they quit putting much effort into the game. Many girls if you never mentioned softball to them, would be bugging the heck out of you to practice with them. But, some girls would never mention the game again.
 
Apr 27, 2009
11
0
i'll try to get a video of her pitching form, i have seen the opposition clock her at 57 in a game using a jugs gun(probably averages 55). The speed is there and when she is on, she is dominating. She seems to do well until there are a couple runners on base and then she seems to tighten up and try to aim instead of throw to the target. I'm thinking it could be mental, she loves her pitching coach and doesn't want to go to anyone else but i might have to over rule her on that one.
 
May 13, 2008
832
16
She seems to do well until there are a couple runners on base and then she seems to tighten up and try to aim instead of throw to the target. I'm thinking it could be mental...
With this additional information I would agree with you; the issue here is mental toughness. She'll need to work through this to realize her potential, which sounds great. Here are a few things to try, hopefully others can add to this list...

  1. Always believe in yourself - She has the stuff to get the batter out, the rest of the runners on base are out of her control.
  2. Believe in your teammates. - She has to have confidence that the players behind her will do their job if she does hers. Keep the ball low and get a grounder.
  3. Stive to improve everyday. - Keep in mind that as a pitcher you are probably working harder than that batter just by all of the practice you do all on your own. Tell yourself that you are better prepared.
  4. Mental Rehersal. - Go over situations in your mind. Prepare yourself ahead of time on what you'd do in these situations.
  5. Envision sucessful situations. - Remember situations in the past where you succeeded.
  6. Take a breath. - Relax, you've been doing this a while now. Getting tense only makes matters worse.
  7. Have a routine on the mound. - A routine helps a pitcher focus between pitches.
  8. You are in control. - If you hit your spots and keep the hitter guessing then you are controlling the at bat.
 

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