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[16 Jun 2012 | No Comment | ]
What’s in a Mound Visit?

When things start to unravel on a pitcher and an innings begins to get away, coaches will call time out and make their way out to the mound to speak with their pitcher.  There may be a list of things not going as well as he would like, but a visit from the pitching coach seems to calm things down.  Some coaches will move with a slower pace while other may be on and off the field before you know it.  The art of the mound visit can make a pitching coach look really smart …

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[12 Jun 2012 | No Comment | ]
Components of Calling a Game

Brandon Tormoehlen
Bellarmine University
Should I let my catcher call the game or should I? This is a question that every pitching coach or head coach has to answer. Some coaches like to have more control of the game; others enjoy teaching their catchers how to call the game; and for some it’s a way we can still compete. This article will highlight a few of the factors that go into each pitch call throughout the course a game. Pre-series scouting reports, an opposing hitter’s swing, pitcher’s stuff, and adjustments will all be examined.
Pre-series scouting reports, whether …

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[4 Jun 2012 | No Comment | ]
Pitching Mechanics from A to Z

By Joey Seal
Norfolk State University
From day one when I get a pitcher in my system, I ensure they understand the most imperative concept to mechanics is the ability to repeat them.  I am not big on encouraging every pitcher to be the same.  After all, sometimes the quirks and unconventional motions in a pitchers motion are what make him most effective.  The base of my philosophy is if the mechanics allow for effectiveness, are not putting the risk of injury out there, and are repeatable, I will not change a whole lot. However, there are …

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[28 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Building a New Staff from the Ground Up

By Rob Smith
Creighton University
In my eleven years as a division one pitching coach I will not have as much turnover as our staff will have this year.  We lose all three-weekend starters along with three of our four-bullpen guys.  We will return about 75 innings total from this year’s staff.  That in many ways is a very scary thought.  Experience goes a long way in this game and to face the prospects of completely over hauled staff can be very daunting.  On the other hand, one could look at it as a new challenge and …

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[20 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Evaluating Post Game Peformance

By Ryan Fecteau
Bryant University
I believe part of becoming a successful pitcher is to evaluate and reflect upon your performances.  Reflecting on performance allows us to look at our tendencies and identify strengths and weaknesses by compiling results for each pitch thrown. We use a few different charts to help evaluate our pitcher’s performance. Our pitching chart gives us our most valuable information, allowing us to look at the following information:
–        Pitch Sequence
–        Strikes & balls
–        Swings and Swings and Misses
–        At bat result/Spray chart
We record each individual pitcher’s performance into an excel sheet where a …

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[16 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Managing the Staff Late in the Year

By Mike Ranson
University of Delaware
Preparing your guys for the grind of the college baseball season is something all of us go through year in and year out.  At the Division I level, getting your kids ready for a 56 game regular season schedule and hopefully a post season tournament birth takes both time and dedication from you, as well as your pitching staff.  I am a firm believer in throwing, in some way, as much as possible.  I feel kids break down earlier due to a few things (emphasis on velocity, poor base mechanics, …

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[12 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Teaching the Mental Game

By Jon Dudycha
Colorado Christian College 
What do we look for when we go out and recruit our Athletes? This is a question all of us coaches ask ourselves each time we sit down with a pad of paper and a pen in our hand. The Recruiting Game The mental side of pitching begins at the high school level with what kind of person he is and what kind of family background he has. I’m the pitching coach at Augsburg, which is a division III NCAA college. Realistically we don’t have the luxury of going after top …

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[5 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Flat Ground vs. Mound Work

By Rob Smith
Creighton University
The debate continues on whether or not pitchers should spend the bulk of their time training on the bump, or on the grass.  Pitching coaches assign various drills and types of bullpens every day in practice with the intentions of helping their guys get a better feel for their delivery and pitches.  One big decision that goes along with that work is if the pitcher should do the work from flat ground or the mound? Some argue that working too much off the mound can take more out of an arm than …

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[2 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
If you’re going to lose…Lose game One

By Ryan Sawyers
West Virginia Wesleyan
Nobody wants to lose.  Unfortunately, the nature of baseball says that 50% of the participants have to lose each and every game.  One pitcher will get a win and one pitcher will get a loss, or sometimes two because in the world of college baseball, double-headers are prevalent.  Teams will often split the double-header with each team winning a game.  And if a team has to lose one of those games they would be better off losing the first one.  Think about a typical post-game speech after losing game one of …

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[20 Apr 2012 | No Comment | ]
Throw out the Book

By Rob Smith
Creighton University
When it comes to pitching there are many opinions on what is right and what is wrong.  In some cases it is true and in others it is just perceived wisdom with no real backing behind it.   Coaches see things happen a time or two and will rely on that as fact for several years to come.  In this article I wanted to address some of the topics that you hear talked about by coaches, commentators on television and radio announcers.  In many cases the thoughts or ideas that are thrown out …