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  • Strange things on a HS mound.

    The last 3 games we played, something very unusual for HSB was seen on the mound from our opponents. Lots of knuckleballs! Two pitchers used it more or less as a CU, but 1 used it as his main pitch, although not as often as you’d see it from someone like Wakefield. And the best part of it from a “baseball” perspective, but not our hitter’s perspective, was that those pitchers were extremely successful. The kid who used it the most got called in in the top of the 1st when the starter got injured after only 2 batters, and gave up only 1 hit and no ERs over the next 5 2/3rds.

    Personally, I love it! I’d much rather see some average kid who can throw a KB and get batters out, than kids who can throw the pi$$ out of the ball but don’t have much success. I guess a main reason more coaches don’t teach it is because its viewed as a “gimmick” pitch, but I suspect the real reason is, they don’t know how to teach it, and even if they do, they don’t have the stones to call it in games because they think its gonna get bombed.
    The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

  • #2
    Originally posted by scorekeeper View Post
    The last 3 games we played, something very unusual for HSB was seen on the mound from our opponents. Lots of knuckleballs! Two pitchers used it more or less as a CU, but 1 used it as his main pitch, although not as often as you’d see it from someone like Wakefield. And the best part of it from a “baseball” perspective, but not our hitter’s perspective, was that those pitchers were extremely successful. The kid who used it the most got called in in the top of the 1st when the starter got injured after only 2 batters, and gave up only 1 hit and no ERs over the next 5 2/3rds.

    Personally, I love it! I’d much rather see some average kid who can throw a KB and get batters out, than kids who can throw the pi$$ out of the ball but don’t have much success. I guess a main reason more coaches don’t teach it is because its viewed as a “gimmick” pitch, but I suspect the real reason is, they don’t know how to teach it, and even if they do, they don’t have the stones to call it in games because they think its gonna get bombed.
    I had a pitcher who threw KB's .... mainly because his FB was about 75 MPH... He was very effective. And fund to watch....
    "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
    - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
    Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

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    • #3
      Please do tell me the school and if you can, the players. The knuckleballers are a small and tight knit group and I want to hear everything about anyone that's throwing them! I'd love to get their names out there amongst the "circle".

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      • #4
        Originally posted by scorekeeper View Post
        I suspect the real reason is, they don’t know how to teach it, and even if they do, they don’t have the stones to call it in games because they think its gonna get bombed.
        self delete
        Last edited by skipper5; 04-01-2012, 06:29 PM.
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        • #5
          The last time my son threw a knuckler it landed a long way over the fence.

          Of course, it wasn't actually knuckling, he wasn't throwing it hard enough.
          efastball.com - hitting and pitching fact checker

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          • #6
            Originally posted by clayadams View Post
            Please do tell me the school and if you can, the players. The knuckleballers are a small and tight knit group and I want to hear everything about anyone that's throwing them! I'd love to get their names out there amongst the "circle".
            ????? At whom is this directed?
            "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
            - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
            Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by songtitle View Post
              The last time my son threw a knuckler it landed a long way over the fence.

              Of course, it wasn't actually knuckling, he wasn't throwing it hard enough.
              There are few who can throw it at this age... I had one.
              "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
              - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
              Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Jake Patterson View Post
                ????? At whom is this directed?
                The OP. Of course if you have any really good KB pitchers, feel free to pass on their names to me!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by clayadams View Post
                  Please do tell me the school and if you can, the players. The knuckleballers are a small and tight knit group and I want to hear everything about anyone that's throwing them! I'd love to get their names out there amongst the "circle".
                  I’m really hesitant to use names of players from other schools. I can talk to our players and parents and get permissions, but players from other teams are a different issue. I know it seems like a non-issue, but those are the ones that most often bit ya in the butt.

                  However, I’ll tell you everything I have on the boy who threw the 5 2/3rds innings against us.

                  3 Runs, none earned.
                  1 hit, a single
                  1 hit scored
                  2 BB, both scored
                  2 LO hitters reached, 1 scored
                  24 batters
                  25 1st pitches, 13 1st pitch strikes
                  5 Ks none looking
                  2 HBP
                  1 sacF
                  2sacB
                  1 WP
                  32 strikes
                  14 balls in play
                  30 balls
                  76 pitches
                  Loss
                  3 errors made behind
                  6 unnecessary pitches
                  2 SB attempts, neither succeeded
                  6 ground ball outs
                  3 fly ball outs
                  1 DP

                  Hope that’s enuff.
                  The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

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                  • #10
                    High school players are usually listed on their school website and/or Maxpreps. They are usually included in local and regional newpapers too. So I don't think you would get in trouble for "reporting."

                    My son used to throw his primary pitch a 2 or a 4 seam fastball, with a knuckle change. He used to not be able to get enough change of speed with a change up grip and he didn't have a good curve at the time, but he had command of his knuckle. He would throw it hard or soft. The hard thown knuckle was devastating after throwing the fast ball because the ball looked like a fastball until just before reaching the plate when it would just die. In one game he struck out 11 in 5 innings of work. One batter didn't wait for the umpire to call the 3rd strike, he just headed for his dugout before the catcher received the pitch. In another game this one against Chatsworth H.S., the starter had been shelled and could not get out of the 1st inning. He shut them down.

                    He rarely pitches now because he is a middle infielder with a bat and wheels. He did pitch last year but only threw 2 / 4 seam fastball, curve and slider.
                    Last edited by Baseball gLove; 04-02-2012, 12:33 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Rarely do i see a KB that is thrown correctly so it floats and dances. Usually is thrown too hard and dives..but that one doesn't work at higher levels.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Swing Coach View Post
                        Rarely do i see a KB that is thrown correctly so it floats and dances. Usually is thrown too hard and dives..but that one doesn't work at higher levels.
                        Why is it that a pitch so relatively simple to throw, literally so effortless is less physically taxing than throwing BP, and has been proven over the years it can be successful even at the highest levels, is thrown little at any level? The reasons are because it’s a pitch viewed as being not very “manly”, and coaches fear it will get whacked like a piñata. But doesn’t every pitch thrown poorly lend itself to being launched into low earth orbit? What goes further than good hitter barreling up a hanging curve? Any hitter barreling up a FB that’s not moving!

                        The scary thing about a KB is, even the weak hitters can catch up to it because of low velocity, and becomes the quintessential pitch not to throw to a weak hitter because it speeds up his bat, or at least that the standard thinking. So rather than allow pitchers to develop it, we’re right back to the ol’ Ws and Ls, where coaches only feel comfortable with putting either behemoths who’s size alone is intimidating, or the hardest throwers who can be found, even if neither one can hit a bull in the a$$ with a bass fiddle.

                        The bottom line is, any pitch needs to be worked on to become a useful tool by a pitcher.
                        The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Baseball gLove View Post
                          High school players are usually listed on their school website and/or Maxpreps. They are usually included in local and regional newpapers too. So I don't think you would get in trouble for "reporting." …
                          True, and the teams and pitchers I’m referring to can be found on MP. If someone wants to, they can read what I wrote in the last team newsletter and hunt down those kids, but I’ve been in enough “discussions” with angry coaches and parents over the years to not just throw anyone’s name up on the WWW without getting permission. Its not that its illegal or that it puts anyone in jeopardy, its that there are just some people it frightens, and I don’t need any more animosity directed at me than I deserve.

                          http://www.infosports.com/scorekeepe...es/EYE1211.pdf
                          The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.

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                          • #14
                            Since no one has brought it up yet--

                            Assuming (big assumption) a HS pitcher has a KB with adequate movement and can throw it for an adequate no. of strikes,

                            nevertheless,

                            --its effectiveness can be reduced or destroyed by wind direction
                            --its difficult for the catcher to catch

                            Regarding the latter, we can't have it both ways. If a slow pitch dances so much a hitter can't hit it....then a catcher is going to have trouble catching it.
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by scorekeeper View Post
                              Why is it that a pitch so relatively simple to throw.... thrown little at any level? The reasons are because it’s a pitch viewed as being not very “manly”, and coaches fear it will get whacked like a piñata..
                              SK,
                              I suspect you don't really believe that MLB teams lack KB pitchers because it's an un-manly pitch.

                              Is it really "relatively simple" to consistently throw quality KB's for strikes?
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