2 Little League Baseball Pitching Grips Every Pitcher Must Know
By Steven Ellis, former Chicago Cubs pitching pro
Knowing how to throw a ball in little league is one of the first things you must learn if you want to be a pitcher.
The sooner you can learn how to grip the ball correctly, hold the ball correctly in your hand, and throw the ball properly, the better you'll be.
In this article, I will go over some of the basic pitches and pitching grips that can be used in Little League pitching, as well as how to throw them with the proper little league baseball pitching grip and form so that they are both safe and effective.
How To Throw A Fastball In Little League
The fastball is the first pitch a ballplayer learns. Essentially, it is just the normal throwing grip which all players should be taught when they are first learning the game. There a few things that you should keep in mind when throwing the fastball.
Pitching Grip: Fingers should be comfortably apart spreading across the “horseshoe” on the baseball. The ball should not be planted back in your palm, rather up in your grip towards your finger tips. This allows for more velocity.
Release: The key to the release is to snap down with your hand. You want to generate backspin for the fastball. This causes it to travel straight with maximum velocity.
How To Throw A Change Up In Little League
The changeup is usually the second pitch a player will learn. It is easy on the arm, making it the ideal off-speed pitch for little leaguers. There are several ways to throw the changeup, but I will go into detail on how to throw the simplest grip. The three finger change up is the easiest change up grip for younger pitchers and those with small hands.
Pitching Grip: Grip the ball with your forefinger, middle finger, and ring finger crossing over the “horseshoe”. The thumb and pinky should be placed under the baseball on the smooth part of the leather. The ball should be placed deep in the palm. This will cause it to “drag” out of your hand causing a velocity drop.
Release: To throw the three-finger change up, release it just like a fastball. Use the same arm action, release point, etc. The velocity drop will come from the “choked” grip.
Once you have the grip and release point down, practice throwing the change up during warm ups and when you are playing catch. This will help you get a “feel” for the pitch, which is very important when throwing the change.
Mastering the fastball and change up is crucial for a developing pitcher. They are the two most common pitches, yet can be the most effective and safe if thrown correctly.
The bottom line is, the more you throw them, the more comfortable you will be with them.
Related Pitching Materials
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