The most important assets a pitcher can possess is good control which means having command of his various pitches within and outside the strike zone.
Occasionally, most pitchers experience a loss of command on certain pitches within a game, or even within an inning. Successful and more experienced pitchers know how to make proper and quick game adjustments with their arm action, grip, finger pressure or release point. They know themselves, understand their usual problem, and know what to adjust to work best for them on a particular pitch.
An experienced pitching coach can help young pitchers by recognizing problems quickly and teach them techniques for game adjustments on their different pitches. Each pitcher will have his own particular fault and his own method of adjustment. The pitcher will need poise, mental control, and focus under game pressure to make effective adjustments.
In the chart below, I am listing some common problems many pitchers experience, some techniques which often cause the problem, and various adjustments which may be effective for a pitcher. As a coach, teach the pitcher how he can best adjust. That way, the pitcher will be better prepared to self-correct problems during a game and be able to work himself out of trouble.
Game adjustments with the slider
|Poor Break||Grip too lose, palm of hand faces batter, lack of finger and thumb action||Firm grip slightly deeper than FB, off-center ball, 1/4 inward turn of the hand and wrist, fingers cut down thru outside|
|Slider backs up||Fingers on side or under the ball, wrist turns under ball, arm slot too wide||1st finger pressure at 1 o’clock, cuts down thru, wrist flexes forward and downward, use FB arm action and arm slot.|
|Lack of normal velocity||Ball gripped too loose, ball choked too deep, stiff wrist action||
Firm finger and thumb pressure, Space between thumb and 1st finger, loose wrist and forearm.
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What do you think?
Now it's time to hear from you:
What do you do when your slider isn't working? Are there any additional tips for throwing a slider that I missed?
Or maybe you have an idea of how I can make this article even better.
Either way, leave a comment and let me know.