January Newsletter: Ringing In The New Year With Baseball On My Mind

So, here we are in 2020. The holidays have passed by once again, and promises of good fortune, lost weight, and other resolutions still resonate in our thoughts and minds.

How did we get here, and what’s next?

We all know how we got here. In this day and age, it certainly isn’t because we did nothing but watch Hallmark Christmas movies throughout the year. We’ve all worked hard; I personally worked harder this last year than I ever have. And I know most of us would say the same thing. But what is the difference between January 1, 2019 and January 1, 2020?

For Throwzone Academy, we added some new devices such as our Rapsodo unit, which the players love when we break it out. The Rapsodo measures specific data important to different types of pitches thrown.

Our summer training this past year was our best-attended and word is out about how much of a difference it makes in player development. We also had different student teachers, including players who now pitch in D1 and D2 baseball, as well as our professional ballplayer, Chris Murphy, who is a long-time client. Chris pitches for the Boston Red Sox and great things are going to happen for him over the next few years.

But for many, the question isn’t, “What have you done for me lately?” as much as it’s, “What WILL you do for my son to get him to his goals and dreams?” We would expect nothing less from Warren and myself in assisting them.

One important area we covered with our 35+ players in our recently completed Holiday Camp was in regards to taking care of the little things. In other words, focusing on the small changes in what they’re doing in order for bigger changes to be realized down the road.

One way to gain insight into what we do at Throwzone Academy is through part of the equation called “chaos theory.” To simplify how it relates to baseball, it means that small changes create bigger changes down the line as we work with pitchers. The chaos theory story says that butterflies in California create tornado-like conditions in the Middle East, that the small flutter of air from a butterfly wing turns incrementally into greater gusts of wind as it moves farther away from where it originated.

Chaos theory in baseball is about making small movement patterns down the chain of the body and affecting larger body parts in order to create power from the ground up and into the release of the ball. That’s a general summary of what we’re doing while working with players.

Another topic we focused on during camp was getting players to understand how the process of what we’re doing will yield the types of results we desire. If a hitter crushes three balls in a game that results in three outs, then most players look solely at the .000 batting average of the game. In fact, those swings the hitter took were exactly the focus of his training. Those three balls are not always going to get caught and will probably turn into three doubles in the next game. That’s what focusing on the process is about, while letting the results be whatever they may be.

We constantly have to remind players they’re doing a terrific job throwing strikes when the radar gun is on, yet they get upset when they don’t throw a record velocity on every pitch. Getting players to focus on the process, not the results, will ultimately reward them in ways they could never expect.

All of our training classes focus on the process. There’s a reason for the class structure within which we operate. We start on the small things, then build them up to mound work. We have them stay in the moment and focus on the task at hand, the process, and the results will be there for them.

On a different note, our players 14 years of age and older, who have worked with us for a period of time, may want to start thinking about joining us for our 7:30pm advanced training classes. This advanced class runs throughout the fall, winter, and spring months. The focus is a little different from our 4:00 and 6:00pm classes in that we’re working on more arm strengthening through core training and weighted ball protocols. If this is something you’re interested in, then reach out to me so I can explain more about how that class works. Last season, we turned out three All-League pitchers, including one Pitcher of the Year, who were JV players the year before.

Those are the results we get. We can help you get to that level.

I’d also like to announce that summer training at Throwzone will start after the first week of June and run for eight weeks. This is the most important time of the year for pitchers and throwers in building up velocity while working on mobility and staying healthy. Our first public announcement will be toward the end of April, but I wanted you to hear about it here first.

Springtime is here and classes will be filling up fast. Contact me to book your time. Tryouts have already begun in some leagues and high school practices are gearing up to be ready for a February 15th start. Bring your child in for classes today and see how our processes work and get the results your child desires.

Until next time,

Jim