What Is A Slider Pitch In Baseball

Slider (SL)

A slider is a breaking pitch that is thrown quicker and with less overall movement than a curveball. It is used to break up a fastball. It breaks with higher force and velocity than the majority of other breaking pitches on the field. The slider and the curveball are sometimes mistaken because they serve essentially the same function – to fool the hitter by spinning and moving away from the pitcher’s arm-side. (“Slurve” refers to a pitch that appears to be on the borderline between the two types of pitches.) Most professional pitchers have either a slider or a curveball in their arsenal, and some have both breaking pitches in their arsenal.

As a result of its sharper delivery and spin that more closely mimics that of a fastball – despite the fact that it does not generate as much overall movement as the curveball – a slider is intended to be slightly more deceiving than the curveball.


A slider, like a curveball, is thrown by a pitcher with a snapping wrist and spinning motion. It is often regarded as being somewhere in the middle of the cutter and the curveball spectrum. It is known to as a “hanging slider,” or simply “hanger,” when the slider does not break as much as the pitcher would like it to. Because of its straight trajectory and low velocity, a hanging slider is more simpler for the batter to hit than a fastball.


During its early years of popularity, in the first part of the twentieth century, the slider was referred to as a “nickel curve.” No one knows who originated the pitch; nevertheless, the aptly named Hall of Famer Charles Albert “Chief” Bender is largely regarded as the person who first brought the pitch to public attention.

In A Call

“snapper,” “sliding piece,” “breaking ball,” “sharp breaking ball” are all terms used to describe a fragment of broken glass.

Slider (baseball) – Wikipedia

A typical grip for throwing a slider is the squat grip. Aslideris a breaking ballpitch that tails laterally and down into the batter’s hitting zone in baseball; it is thrown with less speed than a fastball but more speed than the pitcher’s curveball; it is thrown with less speed than a fastball but more speed than the pitcher’s curveball. When the pitch is broken, it is shorter than when it is curled, and the release method is ‘in-between’ the release techniques of a curveball and a fastball.

The slider is also referred to as ayakker or asnapper in some circles.

Slider continuum

A pitch’s velocity can place it anywhere along the continuum from “fastball” to “slider,” with the following examples:

  • The following terms are used: fastball»cut fastball» hard slider » slider »slurve
  • Cutting speed: 3–5 miles per hour (4.8–8.0 kilometers per hour). slower than a fastball
  • Hard slider: 5–7 miles per hour (8.0–11.3 kilometers per hour)
  • Slower than a fastball slider: 7–9 miles per hour (11–14 km/h) slower than fastball
  • Slider: 7–9 miles per hour (11–14 km/h) slower than fastball

There is a distinction between a slider and a curveball delivery in that the curveball delivery incorporates both a downward tug on the ball as it is released and the lateral spin provided by the slider grip in addition to the yank. The slider is released from the index finger, whereas the curveball is released from the middle finger of the playing hand. It is likely that the pitcher is throwing a curveball or slurve and not a real “slider” if his wrist is snapping downward rather than laterally as he throws the pitch.

When a pitcher “comes around” the ball, he or she increases the amount of tension in his or her pitching arm in order to throw that pitch.

Slider movement is a direct result of the pressure and grip applied to the fingertip.

Standout sliders

Steve Carlton, a left-handed pitcher who became famed for his slider, was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Right-handed pitchers David Cone and Bob Gibson of the Cardinals were both known for their sliders, which they were able to employ in a variety of various ways. Cone would pitch it to hook hard beyond the strike zone to right-handed batters, causing them to chase after it and miss it. He delivered the pitch from a variety of arm angles in order to confuse the hitter even more. A strikeout pitch for left-handed batters, Cone’s slider was thrown to curve back over the outer corner and catch the hitter looking at the plate.

  • Dennis Eckersley attempted to strike out Kirk Gibson with a backdoor slider in the first game of the 1988 World Series, but Gibson was sitting on that same pitch and hit a game-winning home run to give the Yankees the victory.
  • John Smoltz’s slider was particularly impressive, as it would appear to be a strike but then break out of the strike zone when it came in.
  • Rollie Fingers, who won a Cy Young Award in 1981, and Randy Johnson of the Seattle Mariners and Arizona Diamondbacks, whose slider’s lateral movement earned him the moniker “Mr.
  • Johnson’s slider was often quicker than the fastballs of most pitchers at times.
  • Sparky Lyle taught Ron Guidry how to throw a slider, which he used in his own game.
  • In 2008, among big league starting pitchers, CC Sabathia possessed the most effective slider in the game.

In 2011, Clayton Kershawwon thePitching Triple Crownby allowing only a.117 batting average against his slider throughout the course of the season.


Although the original inventor of the slider is debatable, some credit goes to Chief Benderas is the first to make use of the pitcher’s mound. While George Blaeholder is credited with introducing it to baseball in the 1920s with the St. Louis Browns (when the slider was known as a “nickel curve”), it is also believed that George Uhle and Harry O’Neill were responsible for creating the pitch. Bender relied on his slider to enable him pitch a no-hitter and win 212 games throughout the course of his professional career.

Recent examples include Ron Guidry of the New York Yankees, who used the pitch to great effect in 1978, when he went 25–3 and won the Cy Young Award.


  1. The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s “Hall of Famers: Fingers, Rollie”
  2. “Major League Leaderboards » 2009 » Pitchers » Pitch Type Statistics | FanGraphs Baseball | FanGraphs Baseball”. Fangraphs.com. Retrieved May 27,2012
  3. “Major League Leaderboards » 2008 » Pitchers » Pitch Value Statistics | FanGraphs Baseball”. Fangraphs.com. Retrieved May 27,2012
  4. “Major League Leaderboards » Cameron Smith is a writer who lives in the United Kingdom (August 26, 2009). According to Baseball Insider, “The best pitch in baseball is Greinke’s slider.” Voices.washingtonpost.com, retrieved on May 27, 2012
  5. Chuck, Bill, retrieved on May 27, 2012. (September 20, 2011). A blog on baseball analytics called “Kershaw and his improving slider.” Obtainable on May 27, 2012
  6. “WISCONSIN Magazine of History,” published by the Wisconsin Historical Society Press in the spring of 2004. accessed on the 8th of July, 2007
  7. Rob Neyer is a writer who lives in the United States (April 20, 2004). ESPN.com published an article titled “Neyer: History of the slider.” Retrieved on December 14, 2017
  8. “Hall of Famers: Bender, Chief.” National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. The information was obtained on July 8, 2007.

How to Throw a Slider

Welcome to the fifth installment of our “How to Throw” series, which teaches you how to throw a slider. In this lesson, we’ll go over sliders, which are a type of breaking ball that’s well-known for being one of the most nastiest (and most valuable) pitches in baseball. We’ll look at why sliders are so successful at moving things around and go through several grips that you can try out for yourself afterwards.

Overview of a Slider

A slider is a breaking ball that may move in a variety of shapes and sizes, but it is most commonly used with glove side motion and 10-15 inches of drop off the front foot. The ball will revolve with a combination of side spin and gyro (or bullet) spin, resulting in this movement being formed. Sliders are also often thrown at a faster rate than curveballs, with speeds ranging from 6 to 10 mph slower than the fastball. As previously stated, there are several distinct families of sliders, any of which can be useful in a player’s arsenal if used in conjunction with the appropriate metrics.

How to Grip a Slider

The “SL 2” grip type is the most popular among our athletes, and it is the most prevalent grip type. It is a conventional grip in which the fingers are positioned slightly off-center between the inside seams of the handgun. The middle finger is put directly on a seam, and the index finger is placed directly on the leather surface. When a slider is released, it is critical that both fingers work together to impart the appropriate spin that results in the desired movement. The thumb is placed for support on the other side of the ball, just off-center, to provide additional stability.

When compared to a curveball, the slider may not be tucked into the palm as deeply — but this varies from athlete to athlete and is not universal.

After you’ve found a comfortable position for your fingers, you should squeeze the ball between your thumb, index, and middle fingers with a moderate amount of pressure.

How to Throw a Slider

With a few small exceptions, pitching a slider is quite similar to throwing a curveball. Take a peek at the Edgertronic film provided below as an example. The pitcher’s hand is somewhat off to the side, which allows his fingers to come around and pull down on the side of his pitch, resulting in side spin, also known as gyro spin and, eventually, the desired lateral movement. In order to “slash the zone,” we urge that you “throw it like a football,” which is one of the cues we recommend. When the pitch is released, it should feel as if it “slides” out of the player’s hand.

It is possible to pay attention to the sort of spin and movement the ball exhibits during catch play or bullpens even if you do not have access to high-speed camera footage.

Analyzing Slider Movement

In the event that you’re prepared to throw on aRapsododevice, you may use the horizontal and vertical break plots to study the movement profile of your pitch. Please keep in mind that the following graph depicts right-handed pitchers, and that the findings for left-handed pitchers would be the inverse of that. Using the H V break plot, you can see a spectrum of distinct sliders, each of which is marked in blue and situated to the left of the y-axis. This pitch (from a RHP) exhibits negative horizontal movement and a minor degree of negative vertical movement, as demonstrated in the diagrams above.

The break plot illustrates how “frisbee slider” would fall more away from the y-axis, while “gyro slider” would fall closer to the centerpoint, and a “slutter” would fall somewhat above the x-axis with just a tiny amount of horizontal movement, according to the break plot.

Although some slider types outperform others over a given sample (for example, frisbees outperform slurves), every pitcher will find a grip and SL type that is most appropriate for their abilities, arsenal, and degree of comfort with the pitching motion (not every slurve is worse than a frisbee).

Additional Grips and Cues

Additional grips and cues are provided in the section below. You’ll note that there are five different types of slider grips. Each grip will differ in terms of either seam orientation or the use of the index finger. The distinctions between SL 1, 2, 3, and 6 are the location of the seam. While both the index and middle fingers are put on the ball, the placement of the index and middle fingers vary. The SL 1 grip is comparable to a close four-seam fastball grip in its holding. In this posture, the finger pads are positioned on the seams, and the fingers are slightly offset to the side of the ball.

  • It follows the same path as SL 5, but makes use of the bulk of the horseshoe in this instance.
  • This style of grip begins to resemble a “spiked slider” in appearance.
  • The amount of pressure applied by the fingertip will differ from athlete to athlete depending on their level of comfort.
  • The following are some additional cues: “Throw it like a football,” “Throw it like a baseball,” “Pull on one side of the ball,” and “Dividual slash the zone in half.” “Standard Offset” is an abbreviation.

SL 1 “Standard Around” SL 3 “Standard Spike” SL 4″ “Horseshoe Spike” SL 5″ “Horseshoe Standard” SL 6 “Horseshoe Spike” SL 7 “Horseshoe Standard”


Sliders can have a variety of movement patterns, but they will mostly exhibit an element of glove side sweep and a considerable degree of drop when compared to the fastball. A well-honed slider can be a potent weapon in the arsenal of any pitcher. You may gain the momentum you need to generate a pitch type by understanding why it moves and how to throw it properly. Mike Tampellini contributed to this article. Learn how to throw a cutter by reading this article. Learn how to throw a curveball by reading this article.

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Learn how to throw a sinker or two-seam fastball by reading this article.

Baseball pitches illustrated

Baseball is one of my favorite sports. I’ve seen my fair share of broadcast games and been to a couple of live games. Even after all of this, I was still unsure of the difference between the different pitches. I was aware that a curveball was a downward-breaking pitch, but what precisely was a circle changeup? This information was gathered via reading baseball books and conducting web research to create the graphics shown below. This is not an exhaustive list of resources. I’ve selected twelve of the more common pitches, and they are:

  • Fastballs: four-seam, two-seam, Cutter, Splitter, and Forkball
  • Curveballs: four-seam, two-seam, Cutter, Splitter, and Forkball Breaking Balls: Curveball, Slider, Slurve, and Screwball are some of the most common. Changeups include the Changeup, the Palmball, and the Circle Changeup.

Learning to identify pitches

Although the amount of pitches may appear to be a daunting task to keep track of, bear in mind that each pitcher only employs a subset of these pitches. Pedro Martinez, for example, throws a curveball, a circle-changeup, an occasional slider, and a fastball in his repertoire. Before the game, do some preliminary study on the pitcher. Things to look out for that will assist you in identifying a pitch include:

  • The ball’s speed and movement, as well as the overall direction in which it is going. A break is a rapid change in direction

There are a few other characteristics that can aid in the identification of a pitch, including ball rotation, point of release, and grip. Although it may seem excessive to a casual fan, I do not draw or explain any of the last three topics in this section of the website.

Reading the diagrams

Take note of the ball’s speed, movement, and break as well as its break. Make no distinction between where the baseball is depicted in the strike zone and where it is actually located. In addition to fastballs in the middle of the strike zone, you may throw fastballs high and away from the hitter as shown in the illustration. It’s still a fastball, mind you. The pitch is not determined by the location.

Four-seam Fastball

The straightest and fastest pitch. There has been little to no movement.

Two-seam Fastball

A Sinker is another term for this type of person. Occasionally runs in on a right handed hitter as he moves downhill and depending on the release timing of the pitch (RHH).


As it approaches the plate, it begins to separate from a right handed batter (RHH). A combination of a slider and a fastball. A fastball is faster than a slider, yet it has more movement than a slider.


Before reaching the plate, the vehicle has an unexpected breakdown.


Similar to asplitter, but with a more steady, less violent downward movement.


A 12-6 curveball is a type of pitch that is commonly used.

The number 12-6 relates to the movement from top to bottom (picture a clock with hands at 12 and 6).


Breaks down and gets away from the aRHH situation. In the middle of a fastball and a curve.


11-5 movement is the order of the day. A curve with more lateral mobility is similar to a spline.


Movement from 1-7. The polar opposite of theslurve.


It is thrown more slowly than a fastball, yet it has the same arm action as a fastball.


The ball is securely grasped in the palm of the hand. This pitch is similar to a changeup in that it is slower than a fastball, but it is delivered with the same arm action.

Circle Changeup

The screwball is a changeup with a 1-7 moment like the screwball.

PDF Download

Each of the twelve pitch diagrams, with the exception of the text comments, is combined onto a single page PDF.

How To Throw A Filthy Slider (8 Pictures Of Grips)

HomeArticles PitchGrips with Sliders Learn more about my pitchers’ exercise routines here. The proper method of developing functional strength should be used. Discover my pitching routines and throwing plans for athletes that are dedicated to their craft and refuse to accept defeat. More information may be found here. Do you have a good understanding of how to throw a slider? Here, you’ll learn all you need to know about throwing a slider that goes beyond “dirty” or “mean,” and which almost always results in the batter being embarrassed.

  • Isn’t that the truth!?!
  • It is typically quicker and harder than acurveball, but with less downward movement; the slider has a smaller break and tighter spin than acurveball, but with less downward motion.
  • It is critical to master a healthy slider grip as well as proper slider throwing technique in order to maintain and encourage excellent arm health.
  • To become a subscriber, please visit this page.

Slider grip

So, what exactly is the trick to making a fantastic slider? Consider the proper way to grip and throw the slider in greater detail. Baseball-pitching-tips.com is the source of this image.

  1. When holding a slider, it is handled in the same way as a two-seamfastball, but it is held slightly off-center. As throwing, attempt to adjust the pitch such that it comes off the thumb side of your index finger when it hits the ground. Do not allow the two-finger release (as utilized in the two-seam fastball) since it will cause the pitch to balance out, resulting in a reduction in spin. Your objective is the polar opposite – to trigger spin. When throwing a slider, most skilled pitchers hold the outside third of the baseball and tilt their wrist slightly (but not rigidly) to the thumb side of their throwing hand when releasing the pitch. With the index finger, a pitcher may apply pressure to the ball’s outer-half, allowing for more accurate pitching. When you release your grip, avoid twisting your wrist. Place the lengthy seam of the baseball between the index finger and the middle finger of your index and middle fingers. Using the opposite seam beneath the baseball (as seen in the first illustration), place the thumb on the opposing seam. The placement of the index finger along the seam of the ball is considered beneficial by certain pitchers. If you want to use a slider effectively, you must grip the ball slightly off-center, on the outside third of the baseball. When you release the ball, remember to gently cock your wrist but do not stiffen it to ensure a nice wrist snap. If your wrist is slightly cocked to the thumb side of your throwing hand, your wrist-snap will allow the pitch to come off the thumb-side of your index finger, resulting in a successful throw. In this motion, the ball acquires goodspin
  2. The movement on this pitch is caused by the baseball spinning off the index finger from the outside of the ball, rather than by twisting your hand beneath the ball. The speed of the slider arm should be the same as the speed of the fastball arm.

More images of slider grips

Baseball-pitching-tips.com is the source of this image. WHAT IF I TOLD YOU? In addition to having tight spin that mirrors the fastball and a prominent late break down and away, the slider is the second-fastest pitch in the arsenal behind the heater (in a righty vs. righty match up). The first two fingers of the grip are close together and off-center, and they are positioned down the length of a seam. The pitcher utilizes contact throughout the length of the seam and pushes downward to produce spin as soon as the ball is released.

In part because of the grip, the spin does not go straight through the ball, but rather off-center, and the resulting spin pattern finally causes the ball to “snap off” at a downward angle as it reaches the target plate.

Although the pace is lower than that of a fastball, the closer a pitcher can get to delivering it at fastball speed, the better the outcome.

My favorite GIFs of throwing a slider

When you put everything together, it looks like this. Lefty pitcher Chris Sale throws a devastating slider that sweeps across the plate, as shown below. pitcherlist.com is the source of this image. Here’s a really stunning slider from Zack Greinke to get Danny Espinosa out of the game: pitcherlist.com is the source of this image. Finally, take a look at this slider from pitcher Andrew Miller, who is now one of the most powerful closers in the game, as he strikes out hitter Chris Taylor: pitcherlist.com is the source of this image.

Learn more about my workout programs for pitchers

When it comes to baseball, one of the most common myths is that playing the game keeps you in condition to pitch. That would be fantastic if it were true. It is not the case. Preparation is critical in order to go to the next level. Pitchers in the major leagues spend significantly more time preparing to prepare than they do actually pitching. You may learn more about my fitness and pitching programs for baseball pitchers of all ages if you feel that increasing your velocity will be vital to your future success.

What do you think?

After that, it’s your turn: Do you know of any other slider grips, tips, or methods that I should know about? Alternatively, perhaps you have an idea for how I might improve this post even further. In any case, please leave a remark and let me know. Next, check out this cheat sheet on pitching grips, which explains how to throw eight different baseball pitches.

How To Identify The Most Common Pitches In Baseball: Spin, Speed & Location.

Learning to recognize the most frequent baseball pitches (spin, speed, and placement) is an important part of improving your pitch identification skills. It’s one of the most often practiced characteristics among batters using our pitch detection program. What is the best way to identify what sort of pitch is being thrown? Pitch spin and speedlocation are taught to players by the use of a game plan that involves picking up the pitch from the pitcher’s hand as fast as possible and taking it through all three phases of the pitch plane.

In this article, we’ll go over exactly what batters should be looking for when facing common pitches at all levels, including youth, high school, collegiate, and professional.

Speed, BreakLocation

The pitch with the most velocity in the game. A solid fastball will erupt from the pitcher’s hand. Pitchers who throw 95 miles per hour or faster may efficiently pitch up in the zone to generate lazy flyballs to the outfield. Pitchers with average fastballs must establish the outer half of the plate in order to be effective against fastballs on the inside half. Roger Clemens and Nolan Ryan are excellent examples of Four Seam players. Aroldis Chapman is a baseball player.


A hook, a 12-6, a Deuce, a Bender, Lord Charles, Yellow Hammer, and a Number 2 are all nicknames for this card.

Average MLB Curveball: 70-80 MPH.

A solid curveball will have a bugs bunny loop 12-6 drop, which is the most common. (Consider a clock with hands at 12 and 6 o’clock.) Curveballs are often thrown to keep the hitter off balance, as a 2-2 pitch to contact, or to advance the hitter in the count if the pitcher is able to consistently place it for a strike.

See The Pop!

Anticipating the “pop” at the release point of the curveball is an efficient method of identifying it as it comes out of the pitcher’s hand. This means the ball will “burst out of the hand” before reaching its pitch plane, rather than seeping through to it. When hitting curveballs, a good strategy is to seek for one that is high in the zone. If you start low, you’re going to wind up in the dirt. If it starts off high, it will finish up in the strike zone, and vice versa. A notable example of a Curveball pitcher is Barry Zito, Doug Drabek, and Tim Lincecum.

Two Seam Fastball


MLB Average Sinker: 80-93 MPH.

Right-handed two-seamers with a small downward movement will tail in on right-handed hitters, while left-handed fastballs will move away from right-handed hitters with minor downward movement. When the ball is delivered successfully, expect to see a lot of jammed swings and shattered bats. Pedro Martinez and Marcus Stroman are two pitchers that throw an excellent two-seam fastball. Max Scherzer is a professional baseball player.

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Slide Piece is another name for this piece.

MLB Average Slider: 80-90 MPH

Generally speaking, the Slider from a right-handed pitcher is designed to go down and away from the right-handed hitter. A excellent slider is a hard blend of a fastball and a curveball that functions more as an off-speed pitch rather than a breaking ball. In addition, because the Slider appears extremely similar to the fastball when it comes out of the pitcher’s hand, pitchers will throw their Slider off of the fastball in order to throw the hitter off balance. Randy Johnson and Dennis Eckersley are two pitchers that throw an excellent two-seam fastball.

What is a Slider Pitch?

The slider is a popular pitch that can be difficult to learn because of its high frequency. The majority of elite-level professional pitchers use sliders to make their fastballs more effective, particularly when they are well-placed. When the slider is released from the hand, it resembles the fastball, especially when it is not buried in the ground. However, throwing a slider might be more difficult than it appears, particularly for pitchers. Some characteristics of the slider are as follows:

  • Identifying the distinction between a curveball and a slider
  • The origin of the term “slider pitch”
  • How to hold a slider in your hand
  • How to tell if a slider is active

What is the Difference Between a Curveball and a Slider?

Pitch-wise, the curve and the slider are quite similar, with a few significant variances. Both of these pitches are meant to deceive a batter by spinning and moving away from the pitcher’s arm side. On a right-handed hitter, the curve moves from the 12 o’clock position to the 6 o’clock position when the batter swings. The slider, on the other hand, may be moved from 2 o’clock to 8 o’clock. While a curve will travel in a looping fashion, a slider will move in a sharp downward and away direction.

The majority of pitchers attempt to pass their slider off as a fastball.

Is it more difficult to throw a curve than a slider?

Not everyone is cut out to throw a slider, and not everyone is cut out to throw a curveball, for that matter.

Even fewer pitchers will be able to throw both innings. When it comes to choosing a pitching machine, how can you determine which one is suitable for you? Dan Blewett, a former major-leaguer who is now a coach and book, believes that arm slot is a significant factor:

  • A low 34 arm slot or sidearm prevents you from getting over the top of the ball in order to deliver a curve. As a result, go for a slider
  • Pitchers with a 3/4 arm slot or over-the-top can select between a curveball and a slider. Pitchers who throw curve balls should have tight wrists and quick arm movements, whereas pitchers who throw sliders should have slack wrists and windmill-type motions


Change Piece is another name for this item. The Vulcan is a mythical creature.

Average MLB Changeup:70-80 MPH.

Generally speaking, a good changeup from a right-handed pitcher will have a 1-7 type movement and will appear to be falling off of a table. Aside from that, the changeup, whether thrown for a strike or when the inside fastball has been established, might be the most destructive pitch in the whole game. Kyle Hendricks and Cole Hamels are excellent examples of changeups. Jamie Moyer is a character in the television series The Walking Dead.


Also known as a Buzzsaw.

MLB Average Cutter:85-95 MPH.

A right-handed Cutter will move away from a right-handed batter by “cutting” them off. With movement comparable to that of a two-seam fastball, but moving in the opposite direction, the Cutter is a cross between an excellent slider and a fastball. In addition, when a good Cutter is cutting at the hitter, it acts as a “Bat Breaker.” Mariano Rivera is an excellent example of a Cutter. Period!

How To Identify Pitch Types: Spin, SpeedLocation Checklist

Having established how different pitch types tend to emerge from the pitcher’s hand and move around the pitch plane, let’s examine the many forms of spin and rotation that each pitch may produce and how they differ from one another. The several forms of pitch spin have also been discussed down in this comprehensive essay titled: Reading SpinMovement For Better Pitch Recognition.

The Four Seam Fastball (AKA The Heater)

The Four Seam fastball spin will have a strong reddish-brownish color to it, as well as a tighter spin than the other fastball spins. When comparing the four-seam to the two-seam or the cutter, the four-seam has the least amount of movement. The tail or natural movement of a four-seam fastball can be seen on occasion when a pitcher throws with a three-quarters release or a left-handed delivery, depending on the situation. Pedro Martinez’s four-seam and two-seam pitches were both characterized by explosive movement.

Two Seam Fastball (AKA The Sinker)

The Two-Seam will have a tiny horizontal spin, but it will be looser and lighter in spin than the Single-Seam.

The Curveball (AKA The Hammer)

This pitch is significantly paler in color than the previous pitches. The pitcher’s hands create a form of optical illusion as the Hammer is thrown. The release point is the moment at which the pitch will “pop” out of the pitcher’s hands. The pitcher’s wrist angle may also be used to pick up the curveball, which is another option. A thin wrist (Skinny Wrist) The final variation is the “beginner’s curveball,” which may be thrown with the index finger up and off the ball.

The Slider (AKA The Slide Piece)

a color that is darker than the color of a breaking ball It is customary for the slider to break toward the pitcher’s glove side when it has a “Red Dot” at roughly 2 o’clock.

The Changeup (AKA The Vulcan)

Among all the other pitches, this is the lightest “off-white” tint available. The spin direction is in the opposite direction of the breaking ball, and it is closer to the four-seam, with noticeable velocity variations between the two balls.

Learning how to identify the most common pitches in baseball: Spin, SpeedLocation Checklist

Being able to recognize different pitch types is unquestionably one of the most underappreciated abilities of top hitters. Increase your hard-hit contact % by improving your ability to judge balls and strikes. This will reduce your swing and miss ratio and improve your ability to judge balls and strikes. Being able to see the ball as it comes out of the pitcher’s hand is also important in developingHitter’s I.Q.TM and a powerfulSwing TriggerTM.

Finally, greater pitch detection allows you to slow the game down, which is essential for making the transition to pitching at a higher level of competition. Whether you’re not seeing the ball as clearly as you should be, check to see if your pitch recognition is up to par.

Pitch Recognition App

Do you have a question concerning our pitch recognition app? Please contact us. Please get in touch with mehere.

Stay Sharp At Home

Read on to find out how thousands of baseball players are keeping their skills fresh at home by using theApplied Vision Baseball Pitch Recognition Training App to practice at game pace. According to user polls, 95 percent of hitters who have trained in Applied Vision Baseball have stated that they feel MORE secure and more consistent in detecting and reacting to high-velocity fastballs and hard breaking balls. Do you want to improve your pitch recognition abilities? Test your baseball pitch recognition skills with the Applied Vision Baseball Pitch Recognition App.

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  • Knuckleballs, Knuckleballs, Sliders, and Splitters are all types of breaking balls. Changeups, Curveballs, Fastballs, Forkballs, Knuckleballs, Sliders, and Splitters are all types of breaking balls.

Breaking Balls

The term “breaking ball” in baseball refers to pitches that curve in the direction of the batter’s throwing motion while in flight. These pitches can have an arced path while in flight, go toward the ground, or curve to the left or right. This is done in order to deceive hitters. Curveballs, forkballs, splitters, sliders, and backdoor sliders are all examples of this sort of pitching. Breaking pitches (also known as breaking balls) are pitches that, in contrast to fastballs, “break” from a straight course through the air, causing the batter to strike out.

The objective of these devices is to deceive hitters.

Then, when it is too late for the hitter, the ball deviates from its intended path, resulting in the batter missing the baseball.

They also have lower velocity than fastballs, which is another advantage.

Types Of Breaking Balls

There are several different sorts of breaking pitches that we’ll cover:

  • Curveballs, forkballs, splitters, sliders, and backdoor sliders are all examples of this.


A variety of shapes and sizes are available in curveballs and forkballs; splitters; sliders; and backdoor sliders.


By examining the seams of the ball, batters can determine the sort of pitch that is being thrown by their opponent. Curveballs are a sort of breaking ball that has a forward spin and often breaks downhill, which means that they appear to be traveling in a straight line at first, but then quickly deviate to the left or right. Some pitchers, on the other hand, will add variations to this fundamental idea. In the Major Leagues, curveballs are somewhat slow, averaging 70-80 miles per hour in the Majors, but they contain a lot of movement when compared to other pitch types.


Fastballs are the most fundamental and most used type of pitch by pitchers. They are also the most effective. As the name implies, its primary characteristic is speed, and as a result, it follows a very straight course when compared to other pitch kinds. Typically, fastballs are the first pitch thrown by a pitcher to a hitter during any given at-bat. In order to evaluate the batter’s response time and identify the batter’s strike zone, the pitcher delivers a straight fastball in what he believes is the batter’s strike zone, but the umpire calls it a baseball, forcing the pitcher to change his pitching strategy for the remainder of the at-bat.

In order to determine the speed of pitch, a gadget known as a radar gun is used. In most stadiums, the reading from the radar gun is broadcast on displays surrounding the stadium after each pitch.


When it comes to baseball, a forkball is a sort of pitch that is comparable to a curveball but is more severe in nature. Forkballs are a type of curveball that breaks downhill, although its break is considerably more dramatic and abrupt than a conventional curveball. Because of the exhausting and even dangerous action required to throw them, they are an unusual sort of pitch. Forkballs are a sort of breaking pitch that is extremely unusual. When they break downhill, they behave similarly to a more severe sort of curveball, but their break is considerably more intense and quick.

This is one of the reasons why pitchers seldom (if ever) throw forkballs and why they are rarely (if ever) used in baseball.


In baseball, a splitter is a sort of breaking pitch that appears similar to a fastball but is slightly slower (typically between 80 and 90 miles per hour) and breaks downward immediately before reaching the batter’s box. Its purpose is to trick hitters into swinging at the wrong time. The splitter is a forkball variation that is far more prevalent than the forkball. When compared to a fastball, they are somewhat slower, often averaging 80-90 mph, and they break downward immediately before reaching home plate.


A slider is a sort of baseball pitch that features lateral (left/right) movement as well as breaking downhill as it is delivered. In comparison to a curveball, a fastball often has more velocity but less movement. Unlike curveballs, sliders have greater lateral (left/right) movement and faster velocity than curveballs. Sliders are similar to curveballs in that they tend to break downhill. Aside from that, they have a tendency to have less movement than curveballs, meaning that their deviation from a straight course is not as abrupt.

Unlike regular breaking balls, backdoor breaking balls (sometimes known as backdoor sliders, although the word can refer to either curveballs or sliders) act in the other direction.

The hitter does not swing because he believes it is a ball.


Knuckleballs are extremely unusual pitches that present batters with a difficult task because to their unexpected speed and movement. Knuckleballs contain very little rotational spin, which causes them to travel erratically (because spin is what determines how fast and where a ball will go in a given direction). The movement of a knuckleball is extremely unpredictable and uncontrolled; it is governed by elements such as wind and air resistance, among others. Not only does the irregular movement of the knuckleball make it difficult for hitters to hit, but it also makes it difficult for catchers to catch and umpires to rule balls and strikes.

Pitchers also have a tough time mastering the knuckleball since it is not particularly practical, which is why knuckleballs are so uncommon.

Rare Pitch Types

For the purposes of this article, “screwball” refers to a baseball pitch that travels in the opposite direction of a pitcher’s conventional curveball or slider. It is quite unusual to come across one.

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Backdoor Sliders

When a backdoor slider is used in conjunction with a backdoor breaking ball, the batter will be fooled into believing the pitch is a ball. The pitch will go laterally out from the strike zone, before curving back into the strike zone at the last second for a strike.


A cutter is a type of pitch in baseball that appears similar to a fastball but breaks in the opposite direction of a fastball when it is thrown. In most cases, fastballs break to one side of the pitcher’s throwing arm side, whereas cutters break to one side of the pitcher’s throwing arm side, catching batters completely off surprise.


In baseball, a spitball is an old-fashioned method of getting the ball wet in order to throw off the hitter. This was accomplished by the pitcher spitting the ball in order to enhance its velocity.


An off-speed pitch or changeup is a type of pitch in baseball that is similar to a palmball in appearance.

Two-Seam Fastball

An infield two-seam fastball in baseball refers to a sort of fastball that is one of the most commonly used pitches in the game. It differs from the four-seam fastball in that it has a somewhat lower velocity and tends to break more than the latter.

Pitch Placement

When a pitcher delivers a ball that is in the insideout of the strike zone, this is referred as as an inner pitch in baseball. This is on the side of the zone that is closest to the batter’s position.

High Pitch

In baseball, a high pitch is defined as a pitch that is thrown well over the strike zone or above the catcher.

Low Pitch

When a pitcher delivers a ball that is low to the ground and close to the plate, this is referred to as a low pitch in baseball.

Curveball vs. Slider – Here Are Difference

We rely on the generosity of our readers. If you make a purchase after clicking on one of our affiliate links, we may receive a commission. In addition, we get commissions from eligible Amazon sales because we are an Amazon affiliate. A number of baseball words will be heard by new baseball fans, who may believe they understand what they imply. In particular, this is true for specific types of pitches, such as a curveball as opposed to a slider, or even the knuckleball, which is very effective.

  • Alternatively, what happens to a ball when it “knuckles”?
  • It is clear that these are two quite different deliveries to batters.
  • The slider has a lot of lateral spin, which is caused by a specific grip and finger pressure on the ball during the slide.
  • Speaking of curveballs against sliders, there is plenty to be written about their respective triumphs and failures in Major League Baseball, as well as their respective disadvantages.

However, not all pitchers’ arms are created equal, and some hurlers have been throwing breaking pitches for many years. Now, let’s take a closer look at the specifics and characteristics of these long-time favorite benders.

What is a Curveball or a Slider?

Due to the fact that it has been there since the 1860s, the curveball is known as the “grandfather” of non-fastball pitches. In contrast, the slider did not appear on the scene until the 1920s or so. The slurve and cut fastball are only a couple of examples of the many hybrids that have emerged since then. All of these situations involve a pitch that does not go in a straight path toward the hitter. As a result, they are referred to as “breaking” balls or “off-speed” pitches when grouped together.

Because of their sheer velocity and placement (e.g., inside or outside, up or down according on a hitter’s recognized capabilities), fastballs may be effective against batters.

Fastballs, like everything else, can move while in flight, mainly as a result of the way a specific pitcher grips or throws the ball (like Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera).

About those Seams

There are seams on baseballs; these are the points at which two pieces of rawhide are sewed together to make a distinctive shape on the ball, much like when two horseshoes are joined together at their open ends. To put it simply, it is two rounded oblongs joined together by a narrower middle piece. A baseball pitch’s ability to move is dependent on its seams. First and foremost, the seams determine how a pitcher will grasp the ball for a certain pitch. In most cases, fastballs are held with the index and middle fingers, either perpendicular to a seam (4-seam fastball) or parallel to/on top of seams (parallel/on top fastball) (2-finger fastball).

  • Gripping curves and sliders along a seam means they are not centered on the ball, but rather to one side or to the other.
  • The curveball is created by the pitcher snapping the ball so that it spins forward (and not backward like with the fastball).
  • The middle finger has a significant role in the curve grip, whereas the index finger plays a larger role in the slider grip.
  • It is hurled about with the same amount of force as the fastball, but it is gripped and twisted at the final end, causing the late ball movement side to side.

Types of Curves and Sliders

Even within the pitches themselves, there are variations:

  • Curveball with a score of 12-6. Thrown entirely overhand with the forearm coming vertically up and then down, the ball breaks straight down — as if from the 12 to the 6 on a clock face
  • Sweeper curve This version is thrown with an inclined arm slot, such as at 75% of its maximum range, or between straight overhand and straight sidearm, depending on the situation. A lengthy, looping diagonal throw is produced as a result of the break down, as well as the movement toward the off-hand (gloved hand). Sliders are difficult. The slowball is only 5 to 7 mph slower than the fastball when it is thrown. Slider. Fastballs are 7 to 9 mph slower than curveballs

Breaking Pitches and Aerodynamics

Baseballs have weight, and when they are thrown or hit, they spin in a variety of directions, according to the principles of aerodynamics in the process. The seams mentioned above have a significant impact on this since they are raised slightly above the surface of all of the rawhide and, as a result, are impacted by the air as the ball flies. Air molecules may grab and push things on a baseball, such as the seams, and propel it forward. That includes any imperfections on the ball, such as a glob of saliva on the surface, or a significant scrape or cut on the surface.

It’s the equivalent of bending slowly to one side while holding a heavy weight with only one hand.

The force with which a ball is hurled has an affect on the ball’s movement as well.

Pitchers frequently discover that throwing their curveballs slowly causes their curves to break more.

Sliders are thrown harder and rely less on angular spin than other pitches, relying instead on a tight grip and a fastball-like arm slot to succeed.

Deception with Off-Speed Baseball Pitches

Curveballs and sliders, in addition to causing ball movement, rely on disturbing the timing of the hitter, who often packs up pre-pitch to look first for a fastball before attempting to react rapidly to other types of pitches. The greater the amount of time a pitcher can deliver a pitch with the same arm movement as a fastball while also throwing a pitch that comes slowly, the better. The average curveball speed in the Major League Baseball is 77 mph, which is far slower than the 90+ mph of fastballs.

  • It is customary for them to wear gloves with closed pocket webbing, so that no one can see their fingers when they roll the ball around within the mitt.
  • Tipping pitches are used to give the hitter a heads-up on what to expect from a pitcher’s delivery.
  • Pitching success is heavily reliant on the ability to disrupt batters’ timing.
  • That, however, is a topic for another essay.

Individual Pitcher Skill, or Batter Tendencies

Which pitch is superior is entirely dependent on the ability of the pitcher who is throwing it. A violent slider was a weapon that some legendary pitchers, including Sparky Lyle, Ron Guidry, and Steve Carlton, employed to perfection for spectacular seasons and lengthy careers. Others, including as Clayton Kershaw, were thrown incredible curveballs, which they rode to long-term success. It also depends on who is hitting the ball. Some batters, like as Tony Gwynn, have exceptional peripheral vision and the ability to predict what the ball will do as soon as it leaves the pitcher’s glove.

About the Knuckleball

We said before that the knuckleball might be referred to as the fingernail ball. Due to the fact that the grip for throwing a knuckleball requires burying the fingernails of 2 to 4 fingers directly into a seam or on the conceal region, this is true. The first and second knuckles of the fingers stick out from the ball in this grip, giving the impression that the grip is entirely made up of knuckles. It is not the case. When the ball is released, the fingernails and tips push it forward and over the top, preventing the powerful spin that is produced by regularly thrown balls.

  1. The ball, which is not spinning, leaves the seams, which have been elevated a small amount off the rawhide, completely out in the open to be grasped by air molecules (or breezes) as it travels down the route of the ball.
  2. unpredictably unexpected.
  3. To put it another way, they have the ability to go in any direction, and the pitcher has little control over how it will move.
  4. Because of the volatility of the knuckler, many pitchers who rely on it are prone to giving up bases on balls, especially if they aren’t on their game that day or if batters are patient with their pitches.

Because of their controllability and deadly effectiveness, sliders are a favoured weapon for many closers. They can be as controlled as a fastball while yet being just as deadly when thrown well.

Injury Caveat

It should be emphasized that both the slider and the curveball put a huge amount of strain on a human arm, particularly the elbow and shoulder, but even the forearms and wrists in some instances. Because of the off-speed nature of these pitches, it is possible that the wrist will crack violently upon release, placing stress on the joints further up the road — the elbow and shoulder. The majority of youth baseball instructors are well aware of the pitfalls of having young players throw these pitches too frequently, if they do so at all.

Some dads outright prevent tossing them till the child is even a little older than that.

Poor technique, genetics, or other factors have caused pitchers to blow out their arms and terminate their careers throughout the history of professional and college baseball.

Question:What does it mean when someone in the office says something “threw them a curveball?”

Answer: Most of the time, it has nothing to do with a baseball being thrown, but rather refers to a significant divergence from the usual. At work, this might mean starting at 7 a.m. instead of 9 a.m., which is a significant shift from the usual start time.

Q.:How did concerns about the slider and arm injuries start?

Since the 1950s, there has been worry about the slider, and it appeared to be growing as late as the 1970s, when Dodgers manager Walter Alston noted that young pitchers should avoid the pitch until they are “physically suited” and had “sufficient skill” to throw it well. Take a look at these more resources: What is the baseball pitch that is the most difficult to hit? What Is the Difference Between a Sinker and a Splitter? Do Postseason Stats in Major League Baseball Count Towards Career Stats?

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