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Pitching Mechanics Overview
Alex Reyes

In this piece I discuss the pitching mechanics of Alex Reyes. Before I do, let me address one common criticism of my work.

If you have any doubts about what I said when, I have put together a piece that goes over my many tweets about Alex Reyes. I tweet predictions because tweets are...

  1. Time-Stamped
  2. Not Editable

Overview

I was concerned about Alex Reyes' pitching mechanics from literally the moment I saw a picture of him.

What I saw was a very common flaw that I call the Tommy John Twist and that very reliably causes Timing problems in baseball pitchers.

And a flaw that never went away.

While Jeff Passan would have you believe I (only) use still pictures to do my analyses, in truth I spend a lot of time and money driving around the country to get high speed video of pitchers (and hitters).

Alex Reyes' Pitching Mechanics

Alex Reyes

I shot this video of Alex Reyes in Nashville in June 2016.

Alex Reyes' Pitching Mechanics

Alex Reyes

What this clip very clearly shows is Alex Reyes' arm action and how his pitching arm doesn't get UP on time. Instead, it's FLAT when Reyes' shoulders start to turn, a problem I call Flat Arm Syndrome.

May 2018

While there was tremendous optimism about Alex Reyes' prospects during and as a result of his rehab, I didn't share that enthusiasm.

February 15, 2017

With the announcement that Alex Reyes needs Tommy John surgery, I thought it would be helpful to give people an overview of what I saw in his pitching mechanics and why it was a concern.

In sum, what I saw in Alex Reyes' pitching mechanics was a Timing problem that was caused by a common, but problematic, movement pattern that I call Premature Pronation.

Alex Reyes' Pitching Mechanics

Alex Reyes

The picture above of Alex Reyes contains everything I needed to make a prediction; his pitching arm is pronated with his thumb pointing down. That inhibits and delays the external of rotation of his pitching arm.

Sadly, by design.

At front foot plant, rather than being UP, Alex Reyes' pitching arm instead is FLAT. That increases the distance over which, and the force with which, Alex Reyes' pitching arm will externally rotate.

Tommy John Twist

For reasons that are sadly, and increasingly, obvious I refer to this movement pattern as the Tommy John surgery Twist.

In an effort to document exactly how the Tommy John Twist gets pitchers' elbows, in June 2016 I travelled from St. Louis to Nashville in order to obtain the best possible footage of Alex Reyes pitching mechanics in general and his arm action in particular.

The clip below shows exactly how the Tommy John Twist got Alex Reyes' elbow.

Alex Reyes' Pitching Mechanics

Alex Reyes June 2016

The thing to notice is how Alex Reyes keeps his pitching arm in a thumb-down position as his shoulders start to rotate and his pitching arm side elbow starts to rotate around to the right.

At a minimum, that means that Alex Reyes' pitching arm is FLAT, and not UP, when his pitching arm comes under load. That overloads his arm, creating a short-term velocity boost but also led to the failure of Alex Reyes' Ulnar Collateral Ligament and necessitating his Tommy John surgery.

Injury Predictions

I expressed concern about Alex Reyes' pitching mechanics from the moment I saw him.

The Cardinals Have a HUGE Problem

Alex Reyes's Timing and arm action were never great, but they degraded over time. Why? I explain that in my discussion of why the St. Louis Cardinals are in a death spiral.

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