Understanding Pitching Injuries and Proper Mechanics

If you are a baseball coach or player, or the parent of a pitcher, watch below to learn about the safeties and dangers of pitching preparation, mechanics, and injuries.

Yesterday I joined Sport Kinesiologist Angel Borrelli and Joe Castellano on the “It’s Your Pitch” Spreecast, and we discussed the following (among other topics):

– How the the injuries and surgeries of Johan Santana and Chris Young differed, and why Young was able to return to an MLB mound so much more quickly.

– What pitchers — of all ages — should be doing in between starts.

– Why the idea that Johan Santana’s recent struggles are due to “too much rest” is a fallacy.

– What kind of rest Santana REALLY needed, and why.

– Why pitchers don’t pitch well in starts immediately following perfect games/no-hitters.

– Why pitch counts don’t always matter — and when they do.

– Myth debunked: that tall pitchers have a more difficult time with repeating mechanics.

– Another myth debunked: the value of long toss.

– Which Mets pitcher has nearly perfect mechanics that should be copied by youngsters (you may be surprised!)

– Which Mets pitcher might be next for arm surgery (fantasy baseball owners, take note!).

– Why I was the only Mets fan not rooting for Johan’s no-hitter.

– Why R.A. Dickey‘s knuckler is awesome.

Those are just a few of the topics discussed; even if you watch only a few minutes of this show you’re likely to learn something. Enjoy!

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. Joe June 20, 2012 at 4:01 pm
    ” Why I was the only Mets fan not rooting for Johan’s no-hitter.”

    So, you could have explained it upfront, instead of giving a cursory discussion minutes after the game, only giving more detail later. And, even in this video, you note it is understandable for people’s heart to go against the head.

    And, being misguided about it, doesn’t diminish the overall drama and “history” of the situation. You in fact mention that in your remarks in the video. But, and this annoyed people at the time, you didn’t go into that.

    It wasn’t just that people thought you were some spoilsport, Debbie Downer.

  2. Joe Janish June 20, 2012 at 6:28 pm
    I hope you got more out of that video than that. There is a ton of useful info for pitchers, coaches, and parents. My take on the no-hitter was a tiny part and certainly not the focus.
    • Joe June 21, 2012 at 3:23 pm
      It was an hour long. Someone else can analyze the whole thing.
      • HobieLandrith June 21, 2012 at 8:12 pm
        The Mets have off tonight so you have an extra three hours to watch it.

        I’m watching it a second time tonight since there is a lot of good stuff to take away for my kid’s travel team. You are just as much a Debbie Downer. Joe J and Dr. Borelli gave all kinds of free knowledge and all you want to talk about is the Santana thing. Move on.

        • Joe Janish June 22, 2012 at 8:33 pm
          Thanks Hobie, glad someone “gets it.”
  3. Paul Festa June 20, 2012 at 6:36 pm
    What are your thoughts on Mike Marshall’s pitching philosophy?
    • Joe Janish June 21, 2012 at 11:05 pm
      Paul, I personally think that Dr. Marshall’s experiments and theories are worth evaluating to see if there’s anything that can be gleaned. I also think the motion he teaches may be “safe” but it doesn’t appear to allow a man to reach the kind of velocities necessary to pitch in MLB. I know one of his students used a modified version of his mechanics and pitched in the bigs, but until we see several of them make it and succeed for at least a season or two, the jury is out.

      I have discussed Marshall with at least a dozen scientists and pro coaches and all agree that his methods are too radical to take seriously. The scientists see many flaws with his theories pertaining to both training and mechanics.

  4. Matt June 21, 2012 at 2:36 pm
    Joe, you should read dickey’s book, he talks about how he developed his mechanics. Apparently Wakefield taught him to throw “through a doorway” to keep his mechanics straight to the plate. It was that suggestion that cause him to change his delivery.
    • Joe Janish June 21, 2012 at 11:07 pm
      Thanks Matt!

      I’ve been meaning to get RA’s book but haven’t had time to read anything of length lately so been putting it off. If it was available as an audio book I’d have listened to it twice by now (I have a long commute to work every day).

      Thanks again … hopefully I’ll get to it at some point this summer.