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Spin measuring devices

Ken Krause

Administrator
Admin
May 7, 2008
3,470
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Mundelein, IL
I have to say I find it amusing to hear about how so many people are jumping on the spin measuring device bandwagon. I guess some people feel an inherent need to quantify everything.

To me, the measure of whether you have a pitch or not is whether the ball moves in the direction it's supposed to, and how much it moves. I don't need a measuring device to tell me that.

It's like trying to determine who the best pitcher is by using a radar gun. It will tell you who is fastest, to be sure. I own one and use it now and then. But the best one is the one who gets outs.
 
Dec 19, 2008
164
0
Movement is very important. But, so is spin. Yes, you can have a spin pitch that does not move much. A flat fastball with little or no spin will get hit out. A flat fastball with a high amount of spin is more likely to pop up or dink in the dirt.
 
May 7, 2008
2
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Like Izzy's Dad said no spin will get you hit out. Spin of any sort will make the ball go in odd directions when hit. Yes, you still need speed but, pitche's with spin of any kind will be harder to hit well.
 

FastpitchFan

Softball fan
Feb 28, 2008
476
0
Montreal, Canada
Ken,

I agree with you but at the same time, measuring objectively something not only helps measure progress but also helps in motivating athletes.

I believe that we measure speed to see how much faster we get. Spin measurement could be the same in terms of working on our spin.

Whatever you measure objectively is always a good thing even though at the end of the day is what that ball does to the batter that really counts.

Just another tool to help out.

Marc
 

Ken Krause

Administrator
Admin
May 7, 2008
3,470
48
Mundelein, IL
I agree that spin is important, and that faster spin creates more movement. I'm not anti-spin. It's more the emphasis on measuring spin. A ball can spin without creating movement, depending on how it's thrown.

Guess I'm just old school on this one.
 
May 12, 2008
2,217
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I think I agree with Marc if he's saying immediate objective feedback in training is a big deal. I agree with you Ken that magnitude of the break is really the bottom line where spin is concerned and that can also be used for immediate objective feedback. I'm a big fan of using a barrier for the pitcher to throw the drop over part way to home plate moving it closer and closer to home as the pitcher breaks the ball harder and harder. No doubt a vertical barrier would work when developing the curve. Haven't experimented with a barrier on the rise.
 
I believe the Rev Fire spin meter is the best tool I have ever used in developing pitchers.
Equally important is that the spin meter dispells lots of "myths" and reinforces others.
I have developed my priority list of keys for ball movement based largely on objective feedback from the spin meter. The data you recieve will point you in the direction needed to become a better pitching instructor.
I am almost that last person to embrace technology but this tool really has a grip on the market of providing instant feedback to a pitcher/instructor.
Coincidently, relative to my priority list spin rates are #3 or #4 depending on the pitch being thrown. If you want to move the ball like the elite girls you cannot leave out any of the key factors.
My only disappointment relative to the Rev Fire is that it wasn't invented sooner-----I would have been a lot smarter earlier.
 
I think I agree with Marc if he's saying immediate objective feedback in training is a big deal. I agree with you Ken that magnitude of the break is really the bottom line where spin is concerned and that can also be used for immediate objective feedback. I'm a big fan of using a barrier for the pitcher to throw the drop over part way to home plate moving it closer and closer to home as the pitcher breaks the ball harder and harder. No doubt a vertical barrier would work when developing the curve. Haven't experimented with a barrier on the rise.
Mark
Combine the horizontal ribbon with the data recieved from the Rev. Fire and it will tell you what the most important criteria for ball movement is.
Use the horizontal ribbon for the riseball as well as the dropball-----make certain the catcher is geared up.
Rick
 

Ken Krause

Administrator
Admin
May 7, 2008
3,470
48
Mundelein, IL
More, please

ICoincidently, relative to my priority list spin rates are #3 or #4 depending on the pitch being thrown. If you want to move the ball like the elite girls you cannot leave out any of the key factors.
Interesting. But hey, you can't lay out the above statement without telling us what your factors are! I'm interesting in hearing your perspective.
 
The #1 criteria affecting ball movement is------
RELEASE ANGLE---there are several other criteria but they are not even close to as important as release angle is relative to the degree they affect movement. Regardless of the movement pitch being thrown, RELEASE ANGLE is the #1 criteria.

Most of us think of release angle in vertical terms which is key for the rise, drop, change-up. It is important to note that the horizontal release angle is extremely important on the curve and screwball.

For example on a dropball, a Rev Fire and the ribbon mentioned in my earlier post will tell the story. Put the horizontal ribbon knee high and about 4 feet in front of home plate. With a Rev. Fire measure the spin rates from several pitchers who are trying to locate the dropball such that it just ticks the top of the ribbon. Note that when the ball ticks the ribbon, regardless of spin rate and seam orientation, it drops very nicely. Throw a dropball with great spin rate and great seam orientation but it is 3-4 inches above the ribbon----the movement is significantly less--very hittable to say the least.
Combine a dropball that ticks the ribbon with great spin direction, great seam orientation, great spin rate and lastly at the correct speed and you have a Cat Osterman like dropball.
The less the release angle the more chance gravity has to pull the ball downward. So that brings into play a second component of release angle----it is RELEASE POINT. In the case of a dropball, the higher the release point the less release angle required to tick the ribbon.
So how do you get a higher release point? Get your spine angle to be near vertical at release and ensure your shoulders are perpendicular to your spine. (note, it doesn't hurt to be 6'2" tall to help with a nice high release point)

Rick
 

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