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When to mound visit, and how to handle them!

Updated: Aug 22, 2019

➖Physical➖

When to visit?🤔

- To give a break after a long stretch of pitches or after a long AB.

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How to handle it?🤔

- No need for smoke and mirrors. Tell them you’re here to give them a break. Ask them how you can help. Talk about the plan for the next hitter.

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➖Emotional ➖

When to visit?🤔

- When they appear flustered, distracted, discouraged, uncontrollably angry or display any other negative emotion that isn’t being handled well on their own.

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How to handle it?🤔

- Most pitchers will need just need reassurance. Keep everything in perspective. You never know what will happen later in the game. You can’t change the past. All you can control is this next pitch.

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➖Feedback ➖

When to visit?🤔

- When you have something useful to say!

- We are not their pitching coach, nor do we understand pitching mechanics as well as they do. Unless you see something obvious, it’s our job to provide them with INFORMATION. Most pitchers don’t need to be micromanaged. Give them the details and let them adjust!

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How to handle it?🤔

- Younger pitchers will show more obvious mechanical flaws. If you see some blatant mistakes (i.e. glove side dropping or flying open), go talk to them about it. Tell them what you see.

- More advanced pitchers will have more fine-tuned adjustments to make. This is difficult for a catcher to see! To be honest, I never had much success trying to simultaneously watch a pitcher’s mechanics and still receive well. You can, however, understand the ball’s spin characteristics.

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➖Spin➖

How the ball is spinning provides mechanical insight to the trained eye. The catcher has the best view of spin characteristics.

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Examples

- A pitcher’s changeup typically has a good tilt to the spin axis, but today it has a lot of backspin. This suggests the pitcher isn’t getting on top of the ball well and/or pronating well. Tell them this!

- Their slider is “backing up” or is spinning like a football or cement mixer. This suggests they may be pulling open too hard or they’re pushing the ball. Tell them this!

- The fastball has a slight cutting spin. Perhaps they are throwing across their body, or aren’t pronating much.

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