Working on how to throw farther is important for just about every position player in baseball. Of course the pitcher can use velocity to power past the hitter, but the catcher needs to be able to easily make a throw to second, outfielders need to have laser-sharp accuracy to home plate, and infielders need to be ready to make the throw anywhere it might be needed. Improving your throwing distance will make you a more valuable defensive player and maximize your enjoyment of the game. While some are born with a natural ability to throw the ball like a dart, even very good athletes can benefit from some tips and exercises to throw the ball farther.
Though you don’t necessarily want bulging biceps, you do want to have strong arms to throw the ball farther. Pushups are great for building muscle in your arms and chest. You can also use free weights to build strength in your biceps. Throwing medicine balls overhead also work well. These heavy balls will help build strength necessary for throwing baseball far. Players, however, should avoid heavy training with weights during the season. Intensive weight training should be reserved for the off-season and smaller, less intense weights should be used during the season to maintain strength without causing unnecessary fatigue. Throwing a baseball, though, is not simply about arm strength. Good athletes need to have a strong core and legs. Part of any players’ workout regiment should include sit-ups and running to strengthen your abdomen and legs.
If you want to throw farther, it only makes sense to practice throwing. The long toss is a great exercise to throwing skills. The long toss will work your arm’s strength and build stamina. Players pair off, usually by position and start throwing to each other at about 30 feet apart. They will continue to move farther away from each other, until you are far enough apart that you can’t throw the ball without it bouncing on the ground. This will usually end up being about 200 to 300 feet apart, depending on age and experience.
Flexibility will give you a greater range of motion when you throw, allowing you to throw the ball farther. A stretching routine will give your joints more flexibility. It will also decrease the possibility of injury when you stretch before throwing. You don’t want to pull a muscle because you haven’t properly warmed up. You should set aside 10 to 15 minutes to stretch your muscles before beginning work.
It is true that good mechanics don’t always translate into greater distance and velocity. And some pitchers have awful mechanics but can still dominate, like Francisco Rodriguez. For most, though, good mechanics will work wonders for their game. Pitchers have their own intricate mechanics while fielders need to know their own proper throwing techniques. The bottom line is, throwing speed should come from the core of the body, rather than the arm, with the legs firmly planted. This will anchor your body and allow for greater distance and accuracy.