During many years and countless hours watching softball, I’ve heard some things that just make me want to cry.
We’ve all have heard the old saying about there being no such thing as a stupid question. While some of these ballpark comments aren’t stupid…
Slow down, so you can throw strikes!
Really? Do these people now understand that the game is called FASTpitch?
This can be so damaging. especially for young pitchers.
Velocity is key for most successful pitchers. Speed is not the only thing, but there are many advantages for the pitcher who can throw hard. Most importantly, the faster the pitch, the less time a hitter has to react. That’s a huge weapon for the young lady in the circle.
What troubles me most is the impact this statement has on the young pitcher.
We spend time and money to teach young pitchers to use proper mechanics to throw the ball with as much speed as possible. This very complex skill takes a great deal of dedication to master.
If we ask these same pitchers to slow down just to throw strikes, we are asking them to learn another set of skills that are just as difficult to master. It’s also debatable whether these skills will ever truly bring success.
Pitching is tough. If you want to have a pitcher who can dominate a game, you need to buckle up and enjoy the ride. There will be bumps in the road, but the benefits far outweigh the worries.
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