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My P/OF 16yo is starting to develop the yips. He is fine on the mound, and throwing from distance. It is only when warming up, from distances between 40-70'. Once he gets to around 90' he's fine, and is very accurate to distances as long as 280'. His accuracy is fine doing tempo catch.

    He has a strong arm, and is healthy. Up till this winter he had nerve pain in his elbow when pitching, but totally revamped his motion, giving him 8-10MPH more on his fastball, and allowing him to throw a ball 70' longer in long toss, all with no pain.

    I try to tell him it could be worse, as OF'ers don't really have to worry about 50' throws, but he gets embarrassed warming up before games. His throw can be 10' over his partners head, or he can spike it 10' in front of him.

@Nikki posted:

Thank you for the tips.  They make a lot of sense.  I agree that it most likely is not over.  What what I have read it definitely takes time and we are only a couple of weeks into it.  He did tell me last night that he did not want to talk about it--as if he can simply believe it is gone.  I definitely agree that the next step is to throw with friends--but he will throw with the team in practice Thursday night--ready or not!

Any update on your son? Has there been anything he's tried that has helped more than other tips?

Any update on your son? Has there been anything he's tried that has helped more than other tips?

Thank you so much for checking.  He started by throwing in his cage to a target on the wall and throwing outside to his dad.  He has now thrown with friends, his coach, and at team practice and he has gotten his speed back.  Every now and then he throws a wild one--but overall he seems to be working out of it.  Our next tournament begins tomorrow so we will see how he does in game situations--that will be the true test.  I will say--we haven't really made a huge deal out of it and he feels like he has gotten it licked.  

Great article. 

This past weekend I was watching my son's tournament. His team was visitor and the third out was made to switch. As the pitcher was warming up, I said to my wife "look, that catcher has the same issue as TBPson." I could see him lobbing the ball awkwardly but effectively back to the pitcher. Throw down to second was a rocket and right on the back. With 2 outs a kid chased a ball in the dirt. Catcher blocks and kills it, picks it up, takes a few steps to make the tag but he was late. He went to make the throw, hesitated, then sailed it over the 1b head. A couple parents laughed somewhat loud and I gave them a stern look and they quieted themselves immediately. It was one of the worst feelings I can remember having at a baseball game knowing what that kid is going through. 

One positive I've taken away from this, my son's arm doesn't get sore from throwing too much in a game these days. The lob back to the pitcher takes a ton of stress off the arm.

2022 is in short CF, and makes a throw home to nail a runner tagging up. The ball hits 25' up on the backstop. The coach(P5 LHP who is no stranger to arm problems)says, "Next time, just throw it over the backstop!" as a way to defuse the tension. It worked, laughs all round. 

Yips persist, and are now invading the mound where he is now babying the ball in. Velo is WAY down...I know what you are thinking, but no...zero pain.

  That, together with a slump at the plate. It's a tough game, sometimes.

@57special posted:

2022 is in short CF, and makes a throw home to nail a runner tagging up. The ball hits 25' up on the backstop. The coach(P5 LHP who is no stranger to arm problems)says, "Next time, just throw it over the backstop!" as a way to defuse the tension. It worked, laughs all round. 

Yips persist, and are now invading the mound where he is now babying the ball in. Velo is WAY down...I know what you are thinking, but no...zero pain.

  That, together with a slump at the plate. It's a tough game, sometimes.

Will your son throw hard during a pen?

He has been gradually throwing slower and slower since May, when he reached his top velo. He's been obsessing about his breaking pitches, but mainly his pre throw catch routine(he is a OF/P), which has now bled into his OF between inning routine. Is now bouncing the ball to the other OF'er...not a good look.

  Zero pain in his arm, and can throw the ball around 320' when playing long toss.

 

 In general, though, he can throw the ball quite hard once he gets to a mid range distance of around 120+'. Around 200' he is quite accurate, and can throw hard.

  

@57special posted:

He has been gradually throwing slower and slower since May, when he reached his top velo. He's been obsessing about his breaking pitches, but mainly his pre throw catch routine(he is a OF/P), which has now bled into his OF between inning routine. Is now bouncing the ball to the other OF'er...not a good look.

  Zero pain in his arm, and can throw the ball around 320' when playing long toss.

 

 In general, though, he can throw the ball quite hard once he gets to a mid range distance of around 120+'. Around 200' he is quite accurate, and can throw hard.

  

My son played OF a few weeks ago and was doing the same thing for his warm ups. It looked lazy but I knew he just couldn’t do it. My main concern is he’s going to make a max intent throw and not be warmed up resulting in an injury. 

When you say he’s progressively throwing slower, what is the difference from May until now?

My son played OF a few weeks ago and was doing the same thing for his warm ups. It looked lazy but I knew he just couldn’t do it. My main concern is he’s going to make a max intent throw and not be warmed up resulting in an injury. 

When you say he’s progressively throwing slower, what is the difference from May until now?

 Has lost 10-12 mph on the mound. He's all disjointed at this point. Tempo catch he's still accurate, if not very accurate. If he has any time to think, he's lost.

We'll see today, but in general, I'd say, yes. He is much worse in games, but he is also highly conscious of trying not to walk people, as he is on a summer team that is the worst I've ever seen in that regard, and he doesn't want to add to the problem.The yips seem to have affected his whole game. Made him hesitant.

It's just a difficult summer season in general.

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