13 Youth Pitching Grips Every Baseball Coach Should Know


The standard grip on the left and adjust based on their comfort, ability to command the pitch, and movement profile. Athlete, it is often the case that pitchers are generally unaware of the various grip options available to them. The degree of “four-seam” success depends primarily on the grip and execution of this fastball. It is also useful to know as a throw for fielding positions, as it can make the biggest difference when trying to get the ball to a base as quickly as possible. Why stitches on the seams of a baseball are specifically red isn’t also incidental. They used to be in natural cowhide color before the 1900s, then black or blue at the turn of the century.

Younger players also lack the the arm strength and durability to control the forces on the elbow joint during the pitch. This often causes the hand, wrist or elbow to be out of proper position during the acceleration and release phases, which can lead to injury. Raise the finger tips and pads slightly and apply finger pressure between the first and second finger joints. The ball should rest up against the top ridge of the palm or at the base of the fingers.

Because of this, a good hitter can usually time a pitcher’s four-seam fastball. The four-seam fastball is usually the most accurate and fastest pitch in a pitcher’s repertoire, however it offers average softball pitching speed the least amount of movement. Essentially, you want to throw the baseball with the most amount of backspin. Your fingers should hold the ball across the seams allowing you to get good spin.

Your arm angle is the angle at which your arm is at when you release the ball. The lower your arm angle, the more the ball will move on this pitch and the higher the arm angle, the less the ball will move on this pitch. If you believe adding velocity could be critical to your success, check out my proven programs for pitchers of all ages. Here’s a list of cues that may be helpful in teaching or throwing a four-seam fastball yourself. With the “close grip,” the index and middle fingers are placed side by side and directly on the center of the ball. Second, the movement profile will matter more as the player throws harder.

If you throw in the mid-seventies, the movement profile doesn’t matter as much as throwing harder. The splitter pitching grip was invented by Roger Craig and is popular amongst ace players such as Bruce Sutter, Rich Harden, and David Cone. Throwing an effective pitch is always a matter of details. Not having a proper grip can mean the difference between a fastball and a foul ball. Another example of the impact of arm angle at release point can be demonstrated through a comparison of Chris Sale and Josh Hader.

To grip a “cutter”, take your normal fastball grip and shift it slightly off center to apply more pressure to the outside edge of the baseball. Some pitchers like to move their thumb up to the inside of the baseball, similar to a slider. When thrown correctly, a cutter will be similar to a slider, but with sharper movement. To hold the beginner’s curveball, place your middle finger along the bottom seam of the ball while pointing out the index finger.

Throw the palm-side wrist directly at your target with the middle and index fingers extended upwards. The grip on the ball should be firm, and the wrist should be stiff. The release and delivery are similar to the two-seam fastball. Fastballs with lots of backspin can help to offset the effects of gravity on the baseball by reducing the amount of drop on the pitch due to the Magnus Effect. This can give batters the illusion of the vaunted “rising” fastball as the pitch drops less than normal .