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Early Season Pitching Practice:
Avoiding Injuries in Baseball

by Garrett
(Espanola, NM)

Dave's Comments on Early Season Pitching Practice

Dave's Comments on Early Season Pitching Practice

Question: At the beginning of the season, is it acceptable for the coach to have a pitcher pitch his/her hardest, or are they taking the risk of throwing out their arm before the season starts?

Skip's Reply: Early season pitching exercises.


Hey Garrett:
Let us start with the pro mindset. Professional Baseball teams expect their pitchers to come to Spring Training with their throwing arms in fairly good shape.

Pro pitchers will often begin playing catch in December and January at least two or three days per week. By the middle or late January they are probably throwing off the mound once or twice per week.

When spring training starts in February their pitching arms are ready to throw full speed, but the pitching coaches will most likely not have pitchers throw full speed the first few days to avoid injuries in baseball.


Baseball coaches
teaching baseball pitching fundamentals know that pitchers should not throw their hardest the first day they pick up a baseball going into the season. They have to ease into it.

Why risk pitching injury on the first day of practice? So, it is best for pitching coaches to regulate the baseball throwing drills.

Also, it is common pitching practice to keep track of pitches by using pitch counts to record and keep track ot daily throws.

Start the season with baseball pitching drills that allow the pitchers to work on pitching mechanics. Avoid making the pitchers throw hard.

The youth baseball practice drills should not involve the hardest throws the first week of the season.

Baseball Tryouts
At times, players will have to go through tryouts the first day of the season. This is not healthy for avoiding pitching injuries because pitchers are naturally going to want to impress the baseball coach and throw as hard as they can.

I would give a baseball coaching tip to take caution in early season tryouts emphasizing pitchers velocity.


Different Pitches
Teach pitching mechanics early in the season. Avoid throwing baseball pitches especially breaking pitches until the throwing arm is in good shape.

Throwing baseball pitching grips like curveballs and sliders can be done but throw different pitch grips at shorter distances and emphasize lots of spin rotation and not much velocity.

Of course the change up, the four seam fastball pitch and the two seam fastball pitch grips are your basic different baseball pitches to practice all the time from day one.


Baseball Pitching Tips

Baseball pitches should never be thrown hard until the pitching arm used to it. Build arm strength during baseball practice drills a day at a time.

It would be foolish for baseball pitching instruction to expect or want pitchers to throw too hard too early in the season.

Baseball season is more of marathon than a sprint. Train pitching technique for the long haul. I want to see how you finish the season--not how hard you throw on the first day.

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Skip- Came across your books & videos 2 years ago at the end of the season.

I implemented your techniques the next season and can't thank you enough. The kids love practice, we accomplish a lot, and most importantly they all develop throughout the season. I don't worry much if we win or lose just as long as we try and they get better.

My pitchers only throw fastballs and a change up and we do just fine. If the other team hits the ball, great it gives the defense an opportunity to make a play.

I never coach from the box, I just encourage them to hit. And they all know the have the green light on 3-0. The best thing I can do for them is make them better hitters and the only way is to hit! By the way my kids are Junior Little league ages 13-14. Zach, Stockton, CA...


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