In this day and age, when everyone has a computer and phone, we’ve all become armchair experts. Ask anyone how to grip a baseball for any given pitch and you’ll be inundated with advice from everyone posting do-it-yourself movies on Youtube to the Huffington Post. So here is our take to add to the mix; a quick cut out and keep guide to the most used baseball pitch grips.
The Four-Seam Fastball
This is the one we learn early on and one of the fastest, hence the name (the idea is to get the ball to the batter as soon as possible). We place our index and middle fingers perpendicular to the horseshoe seam of the ball, i.e. at right angles to it, holding the ball gently as if it’s something really fragile. The thumb goes underneath, almost directly in the gap between the two fingers above the ball. If you do it right, the batter will see four seams heading his or her way.
The Two-Seam Fastball
This is pretty much like the Four-Seam fastball except that the index and middle fingers are placed along the horseshoe seam. The thumb goes underneath again. A key difference though, is that you need to exert a little extra pressure on the index finger. This will give the ball more movement than a Four-Seam and it will usually move a little more slowly. The batter will see two seams heading his or her way.
The Change Up
The ball is thrown with the arm in the same way as the fastballs but the grip has less force. A circle shape is made with the index finger and thumb with the others behind the ball (which provides less force) and the ball should roll off the small finger, then the ring finger then the middle finger to reach its target.
The speed will generally be the same as for the fastball but the ball will move in a downwardly direction due to the top-spin given by the positioning of the fingers and the motion of the arm. There are several different ways to grip a Curveball but the most common is to put the middle finger on the seam nearest your smallest finger. The index finger hangs off the ball or it can be placed underneath.
We haven’t included the other kinds of pitches such as the Slider, the Splitter and the Cutter but this should be enough to get you started.Save
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