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Well, you have been pitching for a long time!! You have a full wind-up that by the nature of its delivery is hard to pick up from the batters box. On average you strike out 7-9 against hard teams and between 11-15 on some of the weaker teams. You are hitting your spots on command, have great control, have four pitches that are thrown with accuracy, velocity topping out at 87 mph. Your best pitch is your fastball because you have it either tailing in, jamming those batters, or out, having the batter extending their arms to reach the outside pitch!! With a little variation of a wider positioning of the fingers, a slight drop off at the end like a spit finger!! The movement of the fastball becomes the out pitch for you!! You have an outstanding curve ball, it is more of an "over the top", most coaches tell you it it one of the best curves they have seen!! Your slider, is also a great pitch but is probably your weakest!!

Well, you have done well, been recruited by the school that you were dreaming on going to!! The coach recruits you and it is the beginning of your first "one on one" workout with the pitching coach, the first words out of his mouth are "lose that windup".

Your control spins out for the first couple of weeks but you do become average at the stretch!! You never really recover the command that you had with the full wind up but continue to throw as the pitching coach instructs because the coach is, "the coach"!! You go to your first inter-team game and are called in to see what you can do!! The first few pitches are uncomfortable and are a little off the mark but you still get two of the 3 outs by put outs when the ball is trickled back to you. When You head back in for the next inning you realize that you can strike out the next batter with ease if you can just pitch your old way, it is the teams best hitter, a senior, a player that has done nothing but disc you since you walked on to the field!! You decide to switch to your old pitching wind-up!! You make the batter look silly with two wiffs at over the top curve balls and then a high heat fastball tailing out at eyelevel!! The batter slams the bat in the ground and stomps back to the dugout!!! A personal victory, yet you know there will be "heck" to pay later. For the entire rest of the outting, nothing but changeups are called by the coach!! His point being made!! You only pitch the way I tell you to pitch!!! Besides running as fast as you can, for as long as the coach deems is necessary for disipline, what is your next step in your training and how should you appoach the control issue???

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BBW, I feel for the pitcher. I would like to think that I would have checked out the pitching coach before I enrolled at the school. If I could not come to a satisfactory meeting of the minds with the pitching coach, I would then transfer. It would be a pain, but if you are going backwards in your development, then the dream school just turns into a nightmare.
UGH!! Mad

BBWatcher, you sure have struck some chords lately!!! Same scenario, position player known for and recruited by many for his "awesome" swing. Including the coach who finally snagged him. Fall ball freshman year: coach tells everyone to hit "down" on the ball, since the home field is gigantic and "no one will be hitting dingers here...I want ground balls through the hole." Red flags go up wants to change everything about his swing. He and entire team suffer through an anemic offensive season where EVERYONE looks awful at the plate, including son who knows there is NO WAY he can play for this clueless young coach (who, by the way, has over half the team quit after said pitiful season). Exit collegiate baseball; still contributes mightily on a very competitive summer team where he is still known for his "awesome" swing. Sadly, he DID NOT see this coming at all during recruitment. College team is still losing with buckets of undeveloped talent....Stuff happens.... noidea

Is this heaven?...
BBforLife, not saying that this is a true story or not, I think the player has done all of the running that he cares to do, if you know what I mean!! For the sake of this discussion, let's assume that he was the only one on the team that had a windup, the pitching coach was a believer in everything from the stretch!! Also by the mere fact that the pitcher was having outstanding results indicates to me that there wasn't any trouble brewing on the stretch side of things!!
Hypothetically speaking, why wouldn't the coach explain such a vast difference in delivery style, unless it was just a personal preference that the coach was use to developing!! The line comes to mind "if it aint broke, don't fix it"!! If there were changes that were necessary to improve or perform better and they were various small changes, then it would make since, but this was so dramatic, that the change couldn't have been any worse than if the coach had asked the pitcher to pitch with the other hand!! Also, the pitcher was recruited for some odd reason, correct??

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BBWatcher, I also feel for your pitcher! You have entered into a tough situation where the coach thinks that his way is the only way. As pitching is evolving we are finding that barring something that will injure the pitcher, as long as he can get himself under control for delivery and in a good throwing position there is really no need to mold a pitcher to some picture of perfect mechanics. As a matter of fact, like in your situation you can actually take away from the pitchers effectiveness by "straightening" out his mechanics. I think today with all the developments in biomechanical research of pitchers it is neccesary to sacrifice a little form for performance.

As for this pitchers situation, I think eventually it may have to come to a transfer. No one should have to play where they are getting taught to be worse rather than better. After some talks with the coach, you can only allow yourself to be held back so long.

"Forget the curveball Ricky, give em the heater."

Hypothetical or not I find it hard to believe all the pitchers save one were sans windup--- hypothically the kid coming in would have, should have , seen all this in his visit and review of the team.

Hypothetically the kid , being aware of the situation, should not have signed there. If he did he is hypothetically buying into the coaches scheme.

Once again folks HOMEWORK and FIT comes into play.

Apparently it did not come into play in this hypothetical case

If it is hypothetical it is meaningless. Anyone can come up with a hypothetical situation like that. Anyone can also come up with a hypothetical situation where the coach would be perfectly justified. Hypothetically, the kid could be a immature, self centered jerk that needs to be taught a lesson that will help him through the rest of his career.

If the situation is real then one needs to know more about the situation to understand who is in the wrong. The kid, the coach or perhaps both.
As far as this player maybe he did do his homework and was mislead. None of us really have enough facts to say for sure. But TRhit does make a good point that players should do their homework before agreeing to sign somewhere. What are the coach’s philosophies? What do they like about how you play and what do they see that might need work or tweaking. Questions like this along with talking to and observing current players could help prevent a major disaster like the one described above.
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I think that one of the disadvantages a lot of recruits have these days is the inability to follow a team ... close up and personal ... that they are interested in playing for.

The reason I say this ... during our 2 years in college ball, we have seen several different schools where there seems to be a "team-wide pitching style" that is apparently a reflection on the pitching coach(es) for those teams. (Even the UCR coach has his preferred style that he teaches ... but it is almost always to the benefit of the pitcher, not his detriment.) If a player/recruit had the chance to follow a team more closely, they might note these "team styles" and take into consideration how it might affect their future efforts with that team. An example: I can remember one school in particular during the '02 season ... every pitcher on that team, without exception had a little "lead foot toe-tap" ... didn't matter if they were a lefty or a righty. The next year, when we played them, we noticed that the "toe tap" was missing, even from pitchers who were returning. When we looked at the team info for both seasons, we discovered that the pitching coach from the '02 season had gone elsewhere. And something tells me that if we saw his new team, we would see the same "toe tap" ...

Of course, I also realize that "following a team" isn't the only factor ... especially with the extensive fluidity of the coaching staffs across the nation (heck, UCR didn't even have a pitching coach when our son signed) ... but at least with the schools where the coaches have become an "institution" themselves, recruits might see if there is some kind of "team style" and take that into consideration.


Go Highlanders ! ! ! !
Hypothetically speaking - two things to keep in mind.

1- Success at one level does not guarantee success at the next level. As the competitive level increases you can no longer get by with minor flaws that once had no affect on you.

2- There is often room for improvement, even in successful players.

Any time you change something - even for the better - you go through stages. At first there will be a noticable drop in quality as you make the necessary changes. Later, once the new skills are honed the numbers not only return to previous levels, but surpass them.

It is possible the coach is a "do it my way" type. It is also possible he may simply see potential for an even higher level of successs (by doing it his way).

Hypothetically speaking I would be sure to give the change serious thought and serious effort before jumping to a new school - where hypothetically speaking the next coach could agree whole heartedly with this one.

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