How to Grip & Throw Each Pitch


However gravity still prevails, so the ball does not, in fact, ever actually gain altitude. But if you’re a batter watching a fast ball come in and your brain expects the ball to drop at a typical rate, the actual trajectory of the ball appears to rise relative to your expectations. So in a nutshell, your perception is that the ball is rising. This pitch has very late down movement which makes this pitch to lay off of. Out of the hand it looks a little like a cement mixer slider. With spin that that is looser than a slider, it can be tough to pick up the rotation early, because there is no red dot in the middle of the baseball.

Because a 4 seam fastball has no movement, the pressure on each finger before the throw applied to the baseball will be equal. The 4 Seam Fastball is probably one of the easiest pitches that you can throw. The 4 seam fastball is typically the first pitch that a young player will learn how to throw. Don’t let ANYONE tell you that advanced pitchers don’t throw fastballs, that you can’t succeed at the TOP level of the game with one, that you won’t get recruited if you rely on it. The 4-SEAM FASTBALL with good downward spin will hold a line to targets very well.

It would be pretty easy to do with a gun and a speedchek type unit. Among pitchers who have thrown at least 50 innings this year, 42% are throwing both two- and four-seam fastballs, compared to 37% last year. The four-seam fastball consists of a gentle grip and an easy release.

Generally, a hitter will expect a fastball to follow a certain path from the hand, making room for a pitcher to succeed or fail based on their pitch’s differentiation from the batter’s expectation. Easier pitches to hit will follow an expected fastball path – not sinking, rising, or breaking much above the average. The hardest pitches to hit deviate from that path – rising, sinking, and horizontally breaking at a rate that is much different than the average pitch. Pictured below is a graph of the 4-Seam pitch movement versus the average, explaining which pitches are deadly and which are not.

This means that a pitcher with a high spin rate will not generate extra movement unless the majority of their spin is Active Spin. Unlike a breaking-ball grip or wrist position at release, fastball types are simply 2 seam 4 seam fastball grip tied to seam orientation in the pitcher’s hand. Here are some pictures of different two seam fastball grips… Unlike the four-seam, which is held across the seams, the two-seam fastball is held with the seams.

Regardless of the velocity it is thrown, the action is the same. Usually big and loopy but its break angle is more of a 10-4 or11-5 if looking at a clock, pitched from a right hander. This one is still in the fastball family and moves the opposite way of the 2-seamer. This is the same pitch as the sinker, but some pitchers have trouble making the ball dive towards the ground. Next, place your thumb directly on the bottom side of the baseball and on the smooth leather in between the narrow seams . There might be also the fact someone showed him how to throw a 2 seam better than how to throw a 4 sesm so his release gets better pronation and velocity.

This is probably the hardest fastball success factor to quantify since it all revolves around the perception of the batter. The longer a pitcher can “hide” the ball from the batter, the less time the batter will have to see and react to the pitch. This can be especially useful for pitchers who have a slight variance in release point as batters will not know where the pitch is coming from until it has been thrown.

The 4 seam fastball is devised exclusively for gaining pace; it moves towards the batter with slight or no “break” in a straight-line trajectory. The aim is to test the batter’s reaction skill rather than bluffing him with a pitch that breaks towards the bottom or at one side or the other. A 4 seam fastball is a pitch in baseball and is also known as a four-seamer, the rising fastball, or a cross-seamer. It is classified into a fastball pitch category and is typically the toughest ball delivered by the pitcher. Knowing when to throw a 2 seam fastball compared to a 4 seam fastball is an important skill to harness.

This makes it difficult for batters to pick up the baseball until it is too late. With Hader also generating vertical movement from his low arm slot and averaging 95.5 MPH on the radar gun, he has been able to become arguably the best reliever in all of baseball. Considering that he is 6’8”, raw release point data would suggest that Glasnow has a three-quarter/sidearm delivery since his release point is much lower than his height. However, the picture above suggests that Glasnow is an overhand pitcher who just doesn’t stand upright during his delivery. Unfortunately, I could not find any type of pitcher arm angle leaderboard so I cannot prove that the correlation between vertical release point and vertical movement should be higher.

It is considered safer because there is no movement or breaking on the ball. These types of pitches are important to throw when a strike is critical. If you practice the 2 seam fastball, you’ll know when to throw this type of pitch over a 4 seam. Learning to harness the power of your balls movement is going to be the first step to throwing a good 2 seam pitch. Proper pitching mechanics along with a strong familiarity with your pitching tendencies will lead to a successful 2 seam pitch.