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Monday, May 17, 2010

Sports Psychology and Baseball Pitching - How to Be a Better Pitcher - Fifteen Simple, Proven Tips
By Jay Granat

Over the years, I have counseled a number of outstanding pitchers who have wanted to take their game to the next level. These pitchers have been professionals, high school players, minor league players, college players and little league players.

They all want to get better and they want to learn how to pitch in the zone more often.

Here are some of the tips that I have communicated to them.

1. Get some training in self-hypnosis, visualization and meditation. These skills will make you a better pitcher. Know what you need to do to ease yourself into the zone.
2. Use a pre-pitch routine which builds confidence, focus and relaxation into your mind and your body. Similarly, know how to use time in the dugout and the bullpen to stay mentally ready and mentally tough.
3. Study hitters carefully and keep accurate records on what works and what does not work. Too many pitchers and coaches fail to do this. Use and analyze video and relevant statistics frequently.
4. If you can learn to deliver the ball from different positions. Being able to throw overhand, side and three quarters can make you a more deceptive pitcher.
5. Know your strengths and build up your weaknesses.
6. Speed is important, but having movement, break and variety or pitches are also essential skills for a great pitcher.
7. Decide if you are a strike out pitcher, a fly out pitcher or a ground out pitcher.
8. Practice throwing balls as often as you practice throwing strikes. You need to be able to waste pitches and entice hitters into swinging at bad pitches.
9. Work with different coaches, so you can master different aspects of pitching.
10. Determine if you are better as a starter or as a relief pitcher as early in your career as possible.
11. Develop a great rapport and working relationship with your catcher, coaches and and teammates.
12. Erase mistakes from your mind.
13. Believe it or not, you can learn something from every pitch.
14. Every pitch has to have a mission or a purpose.
15. The most important pitch you will throw is the next pitch.

Jay P. Granat, Ph.D. is a psychotherapist and the founder of He is also the author of How To Get Into The Zone With Sport Psychology And Self-Hypnosis
He can be reached at 888 580-ZONE.

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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