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irish

Baseball question...

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I always wonder/ed when watching games on TV how the announcers know what kind of pitch the pitchers are throwing all the time? I mean I can differentiate between a ball thrown faster (ala probably a fastball) and a slower moving pitch, which could be one of many different slower pitches. But there in lies the deception of pitching, balls that look fast aren't always fastballs as there are some pitches that just take a bit off and can fool the hitter. Why aren't the announcers fooled?

 

So how can you tell the pitches that are thrown for sure? :D

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I always wonder/ed when watching games on TV how the announcers know what kind of pitch the pitchers are throwing all the time? I mean I can differentiate between a ball thrown faster (ala probably a fastball) and a slower moving pitch, which could be one of many different slower pitches. But there in lies the deception of pitching, balls that look fast aren't always fastballs as there are some pitches that just take a bit off and can fool the hitter. Why aren't the announcers fooled?

 

So how can you tell the pitches that are thrown for sure? :D

 

 

the movement of the pitch and the position of the arm tell all.

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the movement of the pitch and the position of the arm tell all.

 

I'm watching the Yankee game and Girardi just refered to 2 different kinds of change-ups, a circle change and I forget the other however the arm slot is the same but the fingers are in a different position. That''s got to be hard to tell. And yet they call them out almost immediately after the catcher catches the ball.

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the movement of the pitch and the position of the arm tell all.

 

very true. also the grip of the baseball and the rotation of the of the ball.

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I'm watching the Yankee game and Girardi just refered to 2 different kinds of change-ups, a circle change and I forget the other however the arm slot is the same but the fingers are in a different position. That''s got to be hard to tell. And yet they call them out almost immediately after the catcher catches the ball.

 

 

the circle change usually breaks down and to the right with a right handed pitcher and vice versa with a lefty. a straight change will do just that. remember these guys have monitors and speed radars up in the booth too.

Edited by dmarc117

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They look up at the scoreboard where it says Curve Ball 72 mph.

 

You're such a clown!!! :D They are able to spit it out faster than the board lights up and the board isn't as specific as they are, it usually just says change-up, slider, fastball, curveball. I haven't seen anything else go up there. Any way I can't see the board from my house through the TV so I'd like to know how you can tell without any help. Besides some human being has to be putting the info into the light up board as to what pitch it was.

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the circle change usually breaks down and to the right with a right handed pitcher and vice versa with a lefty. a straight change will do just that. remember these guys have monitors and speed monitors up in the booth too.

 

Well that's got to help just a bit along with the fact that these announcer are usually ex-ball players, like Girardi (especially him because of the position he played).

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you think its hard up in the booth to do it. imagine how hard it is sitting in the batters box 60ft away. hmmm......should i swing, not swing, or f'ing duck!!! and thats all in .000004 of a second. :D

 

hardest thing to do in sports is hit a major league pitcher.

Edited by dmarc117

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hardest thing to do in sports is hit a major league pitcher.

As the catcher will try to tackle you if you charge the mound to hit him? :D

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Grip has alot to do with the pitch, four fingers, two fingers, seam, knuckle etc.

 

You can also watch the release, wrist flick is tell-tale of a curve or slider.

 

Finally, the movement, speed and location are the final clues.

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I'm watching the Yankee game and Girardi just refered to 2 different kinds of change-ups, a circle change and I forget the other however the arm slot is the same but the fingers are in a different position. That''s got to be hard to tell. And yet they call them out almost immediately after the catcher catches the ball.

 

part of it is knowing beforehand what kind of pitches a pitcher throws. very few individual pitchers throw two different change-ups, so if you see a change-up and you know that pitcher throws a circle change, then you know you can say it was a circle change. each pitcher generally has 2-4 pitches they throw regularly, so that narrows it down. the rest is just recognizing the speed and the break. it's pretty easy to do if you watch much baseball.

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part of it is knowing beforehand what kind of pitches a pitcher throws. very few individual pitchers throw two different change-ups, so if you see a change-up and you know that pitcher throws a circle change, then you know you can say it was a circle change. each pitcher generally has 2-4 pitches they throw regularly, so that narrows it down. the rest is just recognizing the speed and the break. it's pretty easy to do if you watch much baseball.

 

Great points as that makes alot of sense. Thanks for all the feedback fellas.

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Having worked for the Red Sox broadcast network, I can tell you it's a little bit of everything that's been said here. #1 is definitely knowing what a pitcher throws, so you know that it's only going to be one of 2-3 options (every pitcher has a fastball, very few have more than 4 pitches). From the booth, you can't see the grip, and most good pitchers don't have different arm angles or releases, or else the batter will pick up on that and hammer the ball.

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The announcers watch the game on monitors, just like we do. I can usually tell before the pitch reaches the batter if it's a fastball or off speed. And if you know the pitcher's repertoire, you would know if he throws a slider, curve, circle change, splitter, or whatever.

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Girardi is a Catcher..They announcers also read the signs

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Having worked for the Red Sox broadcast network, I can tell you it's a little bit of everything that's been said here. #1 is definitely knowing what a pitcher throws, so you know that it's only going to be one of 2-3 options (every pitcher has a fastball, very few have more than 4 pitches). From the booth, you can't see the grip, and most good pitchers don't have different arm angles or releases, or else the batter will pick up on that and hammer the ball.

 

yeah, the stuff in this thread about wrist-flipping and grips and arm angles is not really accurate with big-league pitching. anything like that would quickly be picked up by opposing teams, as you said. like i said, it's knowing what a pitcher throws, and then just seeing the speed and break. usually a pitcher won't have two pitches that look the same, so it's pretty easy to tell. about the hardest scenario i can think of is with a pitcher who throws both a 2-seam fastball and a 4-seamer. the difference being a 2-seamer is just a tad heavier with a hint of downward break. i've seen announcers get crossed on splitters versus change-ups as well, but most pitchers throw one or the other.

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They announcers also read the signs

 

that's a good point too. if there's no one on base, the catcher will just put down 1 for fastball, 2 for curve, etc, and the announcers can see that and say it even before the pitch. can't usually do that with guys on base though. another clue can be how the catcher sets up. for instance, if he sets a high target, you can be sure a fastball is coming.

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Don't want to hijack but it looks like this question is all but answered.... that said, here's one for y'all.....

 

So they show a pitcher's pitch count, and break it down by balls and strikes. Say Joe Schmoe has a pitch count of 80, with 50 strikes and 30 balls. However, he threw "x amount" of pitches that were fouled off with 2 strikes. What happens to those pitches in the pitch count? I'm assuming it just doesn't get counted, as it is neither ball nor strike... but odd, because it is in fact still a "pitch". :D

Edited by darin3

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Don't want to hijack but it looks like this question is all but answered.... that said, here's one for y'all.....

 

So they show a pitcher's pitch count, and break it down by balls and strikes. Say Joe Schmoe has a pitch count of 80, with 50 strikes and 30 balls. However, he threw "x amount" of pitches that were fouled off with 2 strikes. What happens to those pitches in the pitch count? I'm assuming it just doesn't get counted, as it is neither ball nor strike... but odd, because it is in fact still a "pitch". :D

 

they are counted as strikes for that purpose. anything where the batter swings, or the ump calls it, is a strike.

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they are counted as strikes for that purpose. anything where the batter swings, or the ump calls it, is a strike.

That's what I thought, but I could have sworn I read somewhere - or heard somewhere - where this was not the case. :D Makes sense though.

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they are counted as strikes for that purpose. anything where the batter swings, or the ump calls it, is a strike.

 

Exactly and that's why announcers will talk about a patient hitting team getting a pitcher's pitch count up early in a game. For instance the Yankees happen to be one of those patient teams and having watched many of their games over the past years, you'll hear the announcers say well Joe Schmoe is only in the 2nd inning and he's already thrown 42 pitches because these guys just won't swing at balls and they keep fouling balls off that are well thrown but not very hittable. That's the way you get into the bullpen early.

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hardest thing to do in sports is hit a major league pitcher.

I would think hitting a hole in one on a par 5 would be harder

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