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LAY OFF THE RISE!!!!!

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by curveballerguy124 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 12:51 pm

That is good advice for the most part but not entirely true. Why do I bring this up and feel the need to post about it well let me tell you....

I have noticed a growing pattern of kids coming to me saying the same stuff so here is one such example: A parent contacted me, and told me that he would like for his daughter to see some live pitching to challenge her a bit more. They came and met me at the cages I told the young lady that I would start the first round off with drop balls inside outside at a very hittable speed for round 1. We did that she made good contact.  I told her for round 2 I would pick up the speed of the drops and throw some offspeed pitches as well. She struggled a little bit with the offspeed stuff but seem to hit everything else fairly well. I told her for round 3 I would continue to do the same and add in some riseballs, and that’s when she dropped it on me. “I don’t need to see riseballs why would I ever swing at one of those, those are not strikes,” Imagine my surprise!!! So I told her,  “very well I’m going to throw some in there anyways just for you to see them” she didn’t seem very happy about it... Long story short I threw her quite a few riseballs most of which were strikes and the ones that she swung at she wasn’t even close. The look on her face was pure frustration.... 

At the end of the session her parents as well as the young lady came to me and said, “we were always told to lay off of riseballs because they are never strikes” I went on to tell her that as she gets older she’s going to face more and more girls that know how to locate a riseball with correct spin for a strike. Granted she had never seen a riseball with that much movement on it before but that doesn't  negate the fact that she had no plan of attack for that pitch. I told the parents there is a difference between a high pitch and a riseball unfortunately some instructors don't know the difference or how to attack those pitches. So they just say don't swing at those she will come down to you....SMH 
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by Spazsdad » Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:32 pm

LOL
If it was so easy to lay off it wouldn't be such a dominant pitch. It doesn't even have to close to a strike in many instances.
I'm pretty sure she has swung at many "riseballs" in games before
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by Chin Music » Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:10 pm

And there’s the difference between a baseball approach and a fastpitch softball approach.
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by jonriv » Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:28 am

Two of the longest Homeruns my daughter hit were "rise" balls. Hitting coach told her to aim for the upper-half of the ball. I think the key is knowing when in the count a pitcher tends to throw it, do the throw it as strike or not, how well do they execute the pitch?

A well executed pitch is not only hard to hit, but hard to lay off. A not-well executed rise ball(like a hanging slider in baseball) tends to wind up in the stands
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by curveballerguy124 » Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:31 pm

@jon....... My point exactly!!!! Some of the biggest bombs I have EVER given up came courtesy of a riseball that didn't bit so well!!! True story, I threw a pitch to a very good hitter who shall not be named because Chin will clown me for this, but I left a riser hang to this un-named batter. He smashed it so hard out the park I lost site of it..... I little while later after the game the team and I were eating sandwiches at the park next to the field when a ball lands near us..... My catcher say's hey C, that riseball of yours finally landed!!!

Point is, why on earth not teach a kid how to hit that pitch because a pitcher no matter how good they are will hang that riser eventually....
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by Chin Music » Tue Apr 16, 2019 9:32 pm

Barry Bonds?
I’ve given up plenty bombs on flat rise balls in my day too Curv. My youngest brother hit 3 off me in one game and let’s just say his last ab lasted one pitch and he went to first.
Agreed, teach them how to hit it hard! 16s, 18s, College and Pros many times that the pitchers go to.
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by jonriv » Wed Apr 17, 2019 4:11 am

Since you guys both have thrown this pitch. Does weather/climate play a factor in its effectiveness? Is it better in high or low humidity? Hot or cold etc? The reason I ask is that (at least in travel and HS) my daughter did not really see any until facing western trans at the TCS World Series. She really did not see any good ones in college except for a pitcher from Coast Guard and Tufts.

Or is just a different philosophy here in the East. Here seems more drop, left/ right change-up. From my limited exposure out west (one tourney and tv !!!) it appears pitchers out west are taught a more “vertical “ use of the strike zone. Would love to hear your thoughts
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by LoveMeSomeFastpitch » Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:39 am

The reality is if you are playing 14U or under at even the highest level of PGF play, as much as some coaches want to believe they have the next Jennie Finch on their roster, the vast majority of pitchers in this age group CANNOT hit their locations with even 70% consistency, and that is being generous. PGF umpires are WAY BETTER at identifying the strikezone than USSSA/ USA umps. They are not going to give pitchers courtesy strikes that are 3 to 6 inches off the plate or chin high. Moreover, girls pitching at 14U and under are not that proficient at painting the corners. Each batter gets 3 swings to drive the ball into the gap. At this age level, most attempts at throwing a rise ball is going to be high. That's just the way it is. Of course batters should be watching the opposing pitcher long before they get to the plate to identify their proficiency, but as a general rule of thumb, at 14U and under, lay off the high ones and wait for a better pitch.
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by curveballerguy124 » Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:35 am

The only thing that I have seen affect a riseball to any degree is wind and altitude. Altitude kills both drop and rise balls no matter how hard you try and spin it. Wind coming at a pitcher makes a riser move very well while wind on the back of a pitcher makes a drop ball work very well. Aside from those two factors dryer conditions make it harder to get good bite on a riser but it still moves. I would venture to say more humid conditions would be beneficial to a riser but that's just my opinion.

As for it being an east or west coast thing I would imagine its more of having access to local instructors in your area that teach a proper riseball. Over here there are a lot of male instructors that are or were former mens fastpitch hurlers and all male pitchers throw a riseball. I know in SoCal alone there is Joe Salcedo, Myself, Rene Rico, Rob Scwayer, Jason Luli, Russ Snow, Don Sarno, Ron Rupp and up north there are several male pitchers that instruct as well. So I believe its taught quite a bit in Cali. Some damn good pitchers come out of the east coast so I would imagine back there they are being taught the same thing.
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by dusty » Wed Apr 17, 2019 1:50 pm

As an east coast parent of a riseball pitcher I can say it isn't an east coast vs west coast thing as much as it is a lot of east coast travel coaches who would all love to get a quality riseball pitcher but don't want to develop one. Plenty of east coach pitching instructors teach it as well as anyone and then get frustrated when their students tell them they never get to throw one in games because coach wants their catchers catching and not fetching balls over their head.

My oldest dd went through that but my younger dd lucked out and ended up on a developmental 14u team that had a coach patient enough to let her develop it. At 12u her best pitch was the change up but by the time she got through 14u the rise was her go-to pitch and in college she's working overtime to get her change up back in the repertoire.

DD was racking up strikeouts throughout HS and travel and could locate it to get the called strike from the blues that called a high zone. Now in college she gets a lot less strikeouts with it but does get a lot of infield and outfield flyouts as well as giving up more HR's than she's used to. Not pitching scared though, I see a number of college freshmen pitchers who are afraid to through strikes and get the hook for giving up too many BB's.
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