Imagine you’re at Game #7 in the Major League’s World Series. It is the Houston Astros vs. the Washington Nationals.
The Astros threw the first pitch of the game because it was a home game. Afterwards, you ask your dad, “What pitch was that?”
Your dad answered, “I think that was a fastball.”
You ask, “What’s a fastball?”
Your dad answers, “A fastball is a pitch that is thrown hard, fast, and is supposed to go straight to one spot.”
You ask, “What are the other pitches in the world and how many are there?”
Your dad answers, “I don’t know how many there are in the world, but some of them are the 4-seam fastball, the 2-seam fastball, change-up, slider, curveball, cutter, sinker, and much more.”
You ask your dad, “Can I research all the pitches in the world and how many there are?”
Your dad answers, “Once we get home after the game, no, but tomorrow, yes.”
You couldn’t wait for the game to end and the next day to come. Finally it was the next day! You were sad that the Astros lost the World Series, but you were excited that you could research all the baseball pitches in the world.
Let’s Talk Baseball Pitches
I didn’t get to go to the World Series, but I did do some research on the different types of pitches. Today I’m going to talk about what I think are standard baseball pitches. These are all types of fastballs and some moving pitches.
When you throw a 4-seam fastball you hold it across the seams.
When you throw a 2-seam fastball, you hold it on the two seams.
When you grip a split-finger fastball, you hold it with your pointer and middle finger up high on the ball with your thumb underneath the ball.
When you hold a cut fastball (aka “cutter”), you hold it off-center across the seams and tuck your thumb to your arm side.
Moving Pitches Explained
When you throw a slider, you have your palm facing up towards the sky so you can get some curving spin on the ball. A curveball is similar to the slider except it goes slower and curves more.
When you grip the sinker, it is basically like how you grip the 2-seam fastball except it is more to your arm side because you need to throw a little over the ball to get it to dive down.
When you throw a slurve, you have your palm facing up towards the sky so you can get some curving spin on the ball. A slurve is a combination of a slider + curveball. The ball doesn’t go as fast as a slider but it doesn’t go as slow as a curveball. It doesn’t curve as much as a curveball, but it curves more than a slider. A pitcher would use this pitch to slow a batter down by making it look like it’s going to one place but making go to another.
When you grip a breaking ball, you use your finger nails for when you’re throwing to push off a part of the seams to get barely any spin on the ball so it moves unpredictably.
When you grip a knuckle curveball, you use your index finger’s nail on one of the seams and when you let go of the ball, you push with that finger.
Stay Safe While Pitching
Thank you for reading this post. I hope you can use these pitches in real games, but you need to be careful with some of these baseball pitches because they can hurt a young pitcher’s arms. Those pitches are: cutters, sliders, curveballs, and slurves.
Stay tuned for explanations about more advanced baseball pitches.
This Post Has One Comment
Mary Waldman12 Apr 2020
I enjoyed the pictures of the various pitches… because they are close-ups I can understand the hand position in each pitch, something I can’t see from the bleachers! The explanation for each pitch was also helpful because it’s interesting to know why a pitcher uses a specific pitch. I know that the catcher lets the pitcher know what pitch to throw and now I know how the pitcher completes each pitch… thanks !