Florida Baseball Ranch

How Do You Want To Remember This?

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So, today is Rich Hill’s Birthday. I did not know that. Happy birthday from the Florida Baseball Ranch, Rich. If you love being inspired by the resilience of the human spirit, you should look up his story. Rich has overcome as much adversity (on and off the field) as anyone in the history of the big leagues.   Having endured multiple injuries, on the field failures, lost opportunities, physical rehabilitation events, reinventing himself as a pitcher, toiling in independent baseball,…

What Are You Even Doing?

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Harness Horse Racing and The Hierarchy Of Pitcher Development Get this.   I saw my first harness race the other day.  It was quite impressive.  If you’re not familiar harness racing, it’s a peculiar brand of racing where the horse trots in a style that looks like a guy who just ate a bag of rotten green apples and is in a big hurry to get to the bathroom. The animal prances around a track pulling a 2-wheeled vehicle (called a sulky) and a driver who leans back like he’s…

The Anatomy of “Lead Leg Blocking.” It’s Corruptive And Has To Go!

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Over the past few years, the concept of “lead leg blocking” has emerged as an accepted and sought after component of high -level throwing. When training to “block “the lead leg, the athlete is encouraged to execute a move that intentionally, and rapidly actively extends the front knee as the lead leg absorbs the force of landing. Bracing of the front leg in this manner, seemed appropriate. Many high-level pitchers were noted to straighten their knee as they advanced their…

Impulse And The GMs: The Most Important Contributors To Pitching Velocity

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In the spring of 2019, we got a call from Kyle Barker, CEO and founder of Aeronautic an aeronautical engineering company in Little Rock, Arkansas.  Kyle’s son, Will had trained with us for several years, and Kyle was one of the closest friends of Minnesota Twins pitching coach Wes Johnson.  When Wes was the pitching coach at The University of Arkansas, Wes had a state-of-the-art pitching lab installed.  The lab included a mound with force plates embedded.  According to Kyle…

It Will Be Hard

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Raise your hand if you want to be a major league baseball player. Don’t be shy. If you want it, say it. I understand your reluctance. For most people and most training facilities, if you tell them your dream, they’ll caution you to have a plan B. They don’t want you to have false hope. They want you to be “realistic.” They’ll often refer you to what we call “The Pyramid of Hopelessness,” which highlights the long odds against you. Frankly, we’re…

I Don’t Have To Be Better Than You.

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I played college baseball at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina — The ONLY Military Academy in history to make it to the Division 1 College World Series. They did it in 1990, 4 years after I graduated — they had to get rid of some deadwood like me before they could make their run. We played in the Southern Conference. Still, every year, our schedule featured 10-12 games against powerhouse teams like North Carolina, Clemson, South Carolina, and NC State. By…

My Shoulder “Itised”

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The other day I was sitting on my couch watching a playoff game, and out of nowhere, my shoulder “itised.” I mean, I was just sitting there minding my business and BAM! The “itis” hit me. Nearly every other day, we get a call from a player or a parent or coach of a player with arm pain that has bee diagnosed as tendonitis. The cycle they report is eerily familiar. The player feels a little pain in their shoulder or elbow after throwing. It’s nothing major -just a pinch…

The Corruptive Potential of The Current Return to Throwing Protocol

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When I was 18 years old, I had Ulnar Collateral Ligament Reconstructive Surgery, or Tommy John, as it is more popularly known. A week later, I moved into my dorm at Spartanburg Methodist and began the hardest year of my baseball career. While there were several obstacles I had to overcome, without question, the most challenging was the standard return-to-throwing protocol.  I was relentless in my physical therapy work. I lost 30 pounds (I was fat. I needed it), and I became an absolute monster…

It’s Time For A Revolution in Throwing Rehab.

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One night last winter my friend, Alan Jaeger called me with a major concern about the current state of UCL reconstruction post-operative rehabilitation and throwing protocols.  We talked for about an hour, and the discussion ignited a thought eruption that had been smoldering in my head for over 10 years. At the Florida Baseball Ranch® we train and develop high-caliber throwing athletes, improving velocity, command, secondary stuff, and arm health. This past summer, 161 high school and college…

What’s The Point?

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I hear a lot of coaches, players, parents, and administration/front office staff talking about old school vs new school. Data vs gut. Tradition vs innovation. I think both sides need to pause and understand that coaches have been teaching human movement since the game began. We have to remember that data doesn’t create a movement. The movement creates the data.  The data merely tells us how we’re doing. As far as “new and innovative” is concerned. I don’t see anything wrong with…