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Monday, May 24, 2010

How to Crush Opponents With a 79mph Fastball

By Nate Barnett

Watching the 47 year old Jamie Moyer throw 79mph fastballs to MLB hitters and make them look silly is one of the most fun things to witness in all of sports. Early in the 2010 season Moyer tossed a gem of a game against the Atlanta Braves. Complete game, two-hit shutout. Jamie Moyer has become the oldest player in history to throw a shutout in a Big League game.

After the game, Moyer didn't talk about much; he never does. It's all part of the job. He goes about his business calm and composed outing after outing. But, towards the end of the post-game interview, Moyer offered a gem that I have to pass on to you.

He said, "I feel like there's plenty of time when I retire to reflect on things. I'm sure at home we'll talk about it tonight. It'll be a topic of conversation. As far as sitting back, tomorrow I'll probably sit and not necessarily think about what happened, but kind of rehearse the game in mind, go through the game again and be able to see pitches, and thoughts will come back.

"A lot of times at night that happens for me. I usually go sleepless when I pitch - win, lose or draw. It's usually a long night for me, but it can be fun, because it's nice to reenact things and see things. Maybe a thought that went through your head comes back. Something may come to mind.

You don't throw two plus decades in the Bigs without a solid mental game. Moyer reveals his usage of visualization through his mental replay system. The key is that Moyer plays some of the game over in his mind win or lose. Many young guys finish a game and never revisit the feelings and experiences in a game. The reason these experiences can be so valuable is that you will constantly stay in touch with what you need to change or what you need to remember for next time. Combine that and a 79mph fastball and you're golden.

Nate Barnett is co-owner of The Pitching Academy.

You can find The Pitching Academy's articles, blog, and videos on baseball pitching workouts, and pitching grips when you visit the website.

The Pitching Academy's pitching mechanics DVD.

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Hello Baseball Friend,
I welcome any comments or suggestions. If you have a question or a topic that you would like to read about, please leave a comment and I will try to address that topic as soon as I can. Good luck in the coming season!
Have a great day, Nick