Skills: Pitching
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Why Building Good Technique Is Important
1. By learning the proper throwing techniques, players can achieve their best velocity and accuracy while
reducing the risk of injury to their arm and body.
2. Learning the proper throwing techniques when young, allows a player's muscles and mind to develop
the correct memory.  Proper throwing can therefore become a good habit that will stay with players
throughout their playing lives.

Getting Ready to Throw
1. Proper throwing starts with conditioning activities well before the ball season begins.
2. Stretching and warming-up the entire body, as well as the shoulders and arms, is necessary before
actually starting to throw.  "Warm-up to throw; don't throw to warm-up", as stated by the American Sports
Medicine Institute.
3. Start throwing slowly, over a short distance.  Gradually lengthen the distance and increase velocity.  This
warm-up period will vary with the individual, but will be typically 10-20 minutes.

Some Proper Throwing Techniques
1. Plant the back foot, on the side of your throwing arm, and step with the front foot toward the receiver.
2. As you step, turn the shoulder of your gloved hand also toward the receiver.
3. Reach down and back for power, keeping your hand on top of the ball palm down.
4. Extend the arm of the gloved hand forward, for balance, generally with the elbow somewhat bent.
5. Keep your eyes on the target as you "come almost over the top" with the ball.   Sidearm throws are
sometimes necessary in game situations, but maximum velocity and accuracy can be achieved with an
overhand throwing motion.  Let this be your natural motion.
6. Release the ball out in front of your body after your arm passes your head.
7. Follow through with your arm and body -- do not let your throwing side stay back.
8. Your arm follow-through will be a smooth arc down and across to the opposite side of your body to allow
your arm to slow down after releasing the ball.
9. The entire throwing motion should be smooth, not herky-jerky.
10. Start off slowly until the entire process becomes natural and comfortable.

Perfecting Your Technique
1. Work on receiving the ball coming to you on either side, high or low.
2. Get into your throwing position as you are receiving the ball.
3. To be best prepared to make a quick throw, catch the ball with both hands so that the ball can be
transferred easily to your throwing hand.
4. Get your body moving as you receive the ball so that your step toward the receiver is a natural part of
making the catch.  A short hop or "crow-step" will give your body momentum to make the throw.
5. Try to get set before throwing.  Avoid throwing off balance unless it is the only way to make the play
6. Practice getting rid of the ball quickly -- infielders to get a fast runner, and outfielders to nail the runner
tagging-up or stretching a hit.  Imagine various game situations as you toss and practice.

Three Things That Make a Good Ballplayer
1. Practice
2. Practice
3. Practice

Josh Beckett
Pitching Checklist

1. Balance inside of back and stride foot
2. Stay Tall/head over pivot foot/have inward knee on pivot leg
3. Lift Leg, let foot hang/front hip higher than back hip Rotate and show front pocket/Pause and balance
4. Hands close to body
5. Fingers on top of ball, thumb underneath/extend wrist
6. Elbows slightly in front of shoulder
7. Pivot knee relaxed & unlocked/Toe slightly open
8. Forward Movement

No movement until knee drops
1. Break hands as knee drops, thumbs down, force elbows up/ extend wrist
2. Lead with hip, keep R(RH) shoulder back momentarily/front hip higher than rear
3. Move side of hip, leg, foot forward, stay closed
4. Resist Turning Keep elbows in front of shoulders , shoulders on Line
5. Elbows shoulder high
6. Landing

Stride ball of foot to ball of foot
1. Front shoulder closed until foot plant
2. Head at center of triangle up to foot plant
3. Elbows shoulder high
4. Ball facing SS (RH) 2nd (LH), fingers on top of ball/wrist forward
5. Eyes level
6. Land plant foot slightly closed, on ball of foot
7. Firm plant foot, Thigh at 135 degree angle for release
8. Don't let knee drift forward after plant
9. Release Ball

Arch back thrust chest
1. Hand outside elbow as arm accelerates
2. Eyes level
3. Have full extension on wrist/wrist laid back
4. Move to 75 % of stride Rotate hips, trunk, shoulders…EXPLOSION
5. Arms and shoulder rotate around head
6. Flex back forward, release ball at same angle as back
7. Roll over back foot (pivot post ankle)
8. Don't let knee drift
9. Pull back knee forward and In for velocity Back leg comes off rubber before release
10. Drive glove hand back to chest at rotation/or keep over stride foot
11. Throw thru the target, watch target not ball flight
12. Flick wrist upon release, Pull ball hand down across body
13. Finish with head over landing knee
14. Follow thru by showing back pocket/heel over after pushoff foot lands

Checkpoints of a proper delivery:
1. Keep your head over your pivot foot thru-out the entire delivery
2. No forward momentum toward home plate until your lift leg reaches it apex
3. Lift – don't kick – your leg up to its maximum height
4. Hold your hands at the center of gravity – from belly button to upper-chest level
5. Maintain the same upper-body posture you achieve in the balance phase of the delivery
6. Take a controlled fall toward home plate in the tall posture you achieved at balance
7. As you begin to move toward home plate, make sure your entire front side – foot, hip, elbow, knee, and  
glove is aligned with home plate. This is know as a closed, compact delivery. Hips must stay directional
(toward home plate) until the landing foot hits. All hip rotation takes place after this point.
8. Land with your front side directional but your landing foot "closed off" – a right-hander's left big toe
should point slightly toward the third-base side of home plate; a left-hander's right big toe should point
slightly toward the first-base side of home through the body and into the arm at your release point, and
ultimately ensures a less stressful deceleration of the arm.
2004 Triple Crown World Series Champions - 2005 Triple Crown World Series Finalists
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