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When you become a fan of baseball, there are so many things that you initially don’t know about baseball. It looks easy but it is somehow a difficult game. It’s important to know about the rules, regulations, and conditions of the game if you want to understand and enjoy it. One of these rules is pitching from the stretch. Do many people have this question in their mind why do pitchers pitch from the stretch? You don’t have to worry because we are here for you. There are many advantages a pitcher gets if he pitches from the stretch.
When a pitcher pitches from the stretch, it gives him a couple of benefits. You should utilize a wind-up action to place your body into posture before pitching from the stretch. When you pitch from the stretch, you maintain your strength and prevent any injury while striking your pointed audience. Also, pitchers do it due to their comfort level. They can pitch from stretch if they feel comfortable doing it. Further, pitching from the stretch helps control the running game. So, in all ways, it will be very useful if a pitcher pitches from the stretch.
This is just a summary. Let us dig deep into this pitching process so that we can understand it more and have more knowledge about it.
Explanation of Pitching from Stretch
Usually, pitchers use the stretch to pitch the ball. It gives them many benefits. But you may wonder what is pitching from the stretch and why pitchers use it to pitch the ball. It is not very complicated to understand.
So, when a pitcher does pitching from a stretch, the main purpose of it is to prevent running during the execution of the pitch. When there are runners on 1st or 2nd base or when it is more comfortable for pitchers to pitch from the stretch, they will do so.
In baseball, softball, and other games where you throw or hit the ball with some force, pitching from the stretch is crucial. Before stretching your arm muscles, keep in mind to warm them up so that they are prepared to pitch properly. So it will all come in the benefit of a pitcher.
Benefits of Pitching from Stretch
Pitchers pitch from the stretch to gain a mechanical advantage over the batter. Pitchers generally start the game with windups. But they keep changing their strategies according to the situation of the game. They change from windups to stretches when they need to. Mostly it happens when the pitcher wants to stop the runs of the opposite team. And this will give them extra benefits. We have listed here some benefits a pitcher gets when he pitches from the stretch.
Reduction in Pitching Time
The main and actual advantage of Pitching from Stretch is the reduction in the pitching time of the pitcher. It lowers the time of delivery of a pitch. Baserunners who observe a pitcher pitching from the wind-up have a far better probability of stealing a base during the pitcher’s opening motion. Due to this kind of pitch, a runner easily scores runs. It is because windup pitches take more time to deliver.
The pitcher does not move as much as he would during the wind-up when throwing the pitch from the stretch. By lengthening the distance between the pitcher’s release point and the plate, the pitcher increases the velocity of the pitch, making it more difficult for the batter to hit. In addition, the stretch also allows the pitcher to better control his pitches, as he can more easily control the direction and movement of the ball.
Hence, pitching from the stretch helps to keep runners from stealing bases. When a pitcher is in the windup, they have to take a longer stride towards home plate, which gives runners a head start. But when pitchers are in the stretch, they shorten their stride, making it harder for runners to get a good jump.
One more benefit of starting the pitch in the stretch position is that the pitcher is already facing the batter with his front shoulder. As a result, the pitcher can begin to move by lifting his stride leg up to his chest and then taking his final step to the plate to finish the pitch. Hence it is the biggest benefit of doing a pitch from the stretch.
Picking Out Runners from the Stretch
Pitching from stretch also gives you this benefit. By doing the pitching from the stretch, a pitcher can pick off the baserunner more easily. When a pitcher pitches from the stretch, he can use his full windup. This gives him a better chance of getting the ball into the strike zone, and it also gives him more momentum when he releases the ball. This can be helpful when trying to get outs, because the more momentum a pitcher has, the harder it is for hitters to make contact.
When pitchers do pitch in the stretch position, their body is more in line with home plate, which helps them stay on top of the ball and throw strikes. Also, when pitchers pitch from the stretch posture, they use their lower body more. And when a pitcher uses his lower body more, he can generate more power, and this helps when trying to get strikeouts.
So by doing this process, a pitcher can out a runner. Hence, pitching from the stretch position is the best method if a pitcher wants to out the runner.
Other than the main two advantages, this position is more relaxing for a pitcher. When a pitcher positions in the stretch form, he feels more comfortable and relaxed. This position doesn’t put more pressure on the pitcher and hence it will be easy for a pitcher to throw the ball in this position.
So, there you have it. Some of the reasons why pitchers pitch from the stretch. You just have to focus on your position and goal to pitch the ball from the stretch. Next time you’re watching a game, try to have a look and see if you can spot the difference.
Process of Pitching from Stretch
In pitching from the stretch, the pitcher has a specific body position.
- Maintain your body in a firm posture. Your feet should be hip-width open, and your hands should be shoulder-width away.
- Your head should be up and you have to look straight so you can easily judge the field and catcher’s mitt.
- Don’t round your back or tuck your chin as it makes it difficult for you to pitch.
So try to maintain this position in your body.
In our guide, you will find almost all kinds of information about the stretch position pitching of the pitchers. If you read this article, you will find out what pitching from the stretch its advantages and the body position you should have to do a pitch from the stretch. So if you want to know about these things, you should have to read this article to the end.
How can you improve your pitching from stretch?
You can easily improve your pitching skills by practicing. More and more practice will help you a lot.
Do pitchers pitch from stretch always?
Pitchers usually pitch from stretch always when they have a lead so that they can control the game and maintain their momentum.