Teaching Throwing To Baseball Players
In the game of baseball correct throwing mechanics are of the utmost importance. If a player can’t throw with accuracy he does his team little good out in the field. Playersmust constantly strive to perfect their throwing mechanics. Few players take the timenecessary to become really good throwers. Great pride should be taken when a player canconsistently throw to a target.
Key Points in Throwing
Many young players grip the ball with their fingers too wide apart. This affects accuracyseverely reduces velocity of the throw. The fingers should be about ¼ inch apart (aboutthe width of a yellow #2 pencil). The index and middle finger should lay across the wideseams of the ball. This grip is also known as a 4-seam fastball. The pads of the index andmiddle finger sit on the seam of the ball. If you think of the ball as a clock, the index andmiddle fingers should rest on either side of 12 o’clock and the thumb would rest straightunderneath the ball at 6 o’clock. There should be "daylight" between the ball and palm of the throwing hand. This is the best grip for achieving straight backspin and avoiding any"tailing" of the ball.
Arm action refers to the path the throwing arm travels from hand separation torelease-point and follow-through. Baseball throwers must concentrate on breaking thehands and making a big sweeping motion with the arm in order to stay long with the armgoing back to a good power position. Power position refers to the position where the player has the throwing arm back, level with the shoulder or higher, and bent at theelbow. The throwing-hand index and middle fingers should be point up forming a "V".The back of the throwing hand should face the thrower while the palm of the throwinghand should face away from the thrower. Practicing a good power position is essential in becoming a good thrower. The front shoulder should always point at the target and stayclosed. As the player turns to throw, the glove-side elbow should be as high or higher than the throwing-side shoulder. The throwing fingers must stay pointing up throughrelease to get good straight backspin. When throwing with a partner, young playersshould imagine painting a vertical line with their throwing hand from the letters on their partner’s hat to their partner’s belt buckle.