As I discuss in The Tom House Template, I am seeing a pattern emerging in pitchers; more and more pitchers -- at all levels -- whose movements are best described as...
This contrast sharply with the fluidity and athleticism you used to see in pitchers and that you still see in a few pitchers, starting with David Price.
I've spent the past year trying to figure out why I'm seeing what I am, and just this morning I came across a picture in Tom House and Doug Thorburn's Arm Action, Arm Path, and the Perfect Pitch that I believe is a huge piece of the puzzle.
Arm Action, Arm Path, and the Perfect Pitch page 48
Notice how the pitcher, who is moving according to The Tom House Template, is moving pretty much identically to Mark Prior; there's the Inverted W, the largely closed hips, and the heel landing.
That gave me the idea to sync up two clips of Nolan Ryan and Mark Prior in order to compare their pitching mechanics and movements at the same moment in time and see how and where they diverged.
Nolan Ryan and Mark Prior
What stood out to me was the difference in their posture at foot plant.
Nolan Ryan and Mark Prior: Postural Differences
What Mark Prior is doing, and more fundamentally how he is moving, is completely different than what Nolan Ryan does, but completely consistent with what Tom House teaches. It's also something I see in increasing numbers of pitchers, including...
- Aaron Sanchez
- Justin Masterson
I also wonder if Carlos Martinez is being taught this and if that explains the shoulder problems he experienced at the end of 2015. Notice the significant difference in his posture and arm slot at the release point between early 2015 and late 2015.
Carlos Martinez Before and After
What are the cues that produce these problematic movement patterns?
As it turns out, there are five cues that comprise what I call The Killer Quintet.