Pitching Mechanics Analysis
February 20, 2012
There has been extensive discussion among Yankee fans about
whether new Yankee pitcher Michael Pineda has an
Inverted W or not. The bottom line on Michael Pineda's pitching
mechanics is that I do not see the Inverted W in Michael
Pineda's pitching mechanics, but I do see some things that
First, Michael Pineda doesn't have a classic Inverted W.
While his elbows do get a bit high, it's borderline at best.
You can see some hints of a Timing problem in the
two pictures above, and in the picture directly above in
particular. The thing to notice is how Michael Pineda's arm is
passing through 90 degrees of external rotation but his glove
side elbow has pulled back significantly and his shoulders have
rotated significantly. That suggests that his arm is a bit late.
You can see the same thing in the pictures above of Michael
Pineda; notice how his Pitching Arm Side (PAS) forearm is
vertical and at 90 degrees of external rotation and his Glove
Side (GS) elbow is well behind his back. That is often an
indication of a Timing problem.
However, what Michael Pineda does isn't as drastic as what
Strasburg does; notice how much later Stephen Strasburg's
PAS forearm is. Strasburg's PAS forearm is closer to horizontal
whereas Michael Pineda's PAS forearm is closer to vertical,
which is a significant difference.
What concerns me the most about Michael Pineda's arm action
is that he seems to Point the Ball at Second Base or Center Field. Many people
teach this, but it's both unnecessary and potentially injurious.
If you look at high speed clips of Michael Pineda, you can see
his PAS forearm rotate around at the last second as gets his hand into position to throw the ball. That late
torqueing can create a timing problem and can increase the load
on both the elbow and the shoulder.
high-speed clip above, notice how he
shows the ball to Center Field and how this causes his arm to be
late and appears to create a timing problem. He also does all of
this with his PAS elbow quite high, and possibly above the level
of his shoulders in a position of