Softball Pitching Skills – The Fastball and Change Up

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 143,825
    Softball coach Suzy Willemssen demonstrates the fastball and change up.

    Suzy Willemssen

    Suzy is an instructor at the Frozen Ropes Baseball/Softball facility in Chantilly, VA, the head coach of Blue Jays Gold, an 18u ASA junior olympic team and is also the Varsity Softball Head Coach at Chantilly HS. Prior to the Chantilly position, she was the Assistant Varsity Softball Coach for West Springfield High School from 2003-2005 and the Assistant Junior Varsity Softball Coach in 2002. In 2004 Suzy was awarded the Patriot District Assistant Coach of the Year. Suzy played softball at the University of Iowa where she majored in physical education. She has worked numerous softball camps and clinics throughout the Northern VA area and is known for her knowledge, passion and enthusiasm for the game.

    Hi. I am Susie Willimson and I am a travel ball and high school softball coach. Christie is going to be here helping me demonstrate some basic fastpitch softball skills. In this one particularly, were going to be reviewing is the grip for the fastball. Again, it would be basic pitch, the first pitch any young pitcher should learn when theyre interested in learning how to pitch a fastpitch softball. Christie is going to be using a three-finger grip and so again, she is going to be starting on the mount, both feet need to be on the rubber and as you see, Christie will be pushing off with a good leg drive and then she gets herself in the K position once you go ahead and -- just stop at that point, Christie, if you get the three-finger grip, pushes off using the legs, in fact, the legs are essential, huge, the biggest part of learning how to pitch using our lower body and so once we get everything set then she allows as she can see the hips are cleared, she can bring the arm through and actually allow the whipping action in the final snap of the wrist. So, again, Christie, why dont you just go slow showing the three-finger grip coming through power line and then the release. You also notice on Christies front side how she had the gloves, again everything pointed towards the target home plate. So, fastball number one pitch you need to learn in fact the good idea, naturally master anything else so you can pitch at seven, eight out of ten times. The next foundation pitch is going to be the changeup. As we talked before, hitting is all about timing and the change-up is the best way to mess up a hitters timing. Christie is going to demonstrate the grip when using a circle change-up. So, as you can see, she has got a circle using her index and thumb around the side and everything is going to be the same. Whats also essential when throwing the change-up is that you disguise it. Everything looks identical to the fastball except as the ball is coming to the plate, its going at least 10-15 miles slower. So, again heres Christie demonstrating how the circle changes. As you can see everything is coming off, her presentation on the mount, both feet, getting her power line, glove, everything looks identical to the fastball except that its going to come out around 10-15 miles an hour slower, again messing up the hitters timing, and Ill say it again, hitting is all about timing. So, learn the fastball, learn the change-up and master those two, you can create havoc when that batter is in the batters box.