The Baseball Zone Blog

Courtney Plewes | Oct 5, 2015 5:23:00 PM

8 Baseball Strength Training Lessons From the Cressey Elite Mentorship

On June 14-16th of this year I was fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to attend the Elite Baseball Mentorship program at Eric Cressey’s training center in Hudson, MA. For those of you who don’t know who Eric is you can check out his website here. Basically he is THE go-to-guy in the USA for high school, college and professional baseball players.

For those of you who have been to our facility here at The Baseball Zone you will be happy to know that our facilities were almost identical, only opposite in a way! I mean that Cressey’s gym is 15,000 sq. ft. with the majority of his facility being designated for strength and conditioning with two bullpen lanes; while ours is 15,000 sq. ft. with about 3,500 sq. ft. of that being strength and conditioning and the rest baseball.


Topics: warming up, strength training, in-season strength training, baseball strength training, strength training for baseball, off-season strength training, baseball exercise, pitching, speed, speed training, baseball speed, med ball drills, throwing skills, prowler training, prehab, baseball warm up, pitching mechanics, shoulder strength, biomechanics, sprinting speed, explosive strength, mobility, sled sprints, performance training, sports performance, strength and conditioning, elite baseball mentorship, cressey sports performance, eric cressey, athlete assessments, squat, pressing exercises, power, cleans

Ryan Armstrong | Dec 20, 2014 6:30:00 AM

Baseball Drill of the Week | "Pendulum to Pelvic Load"

This week's Pitching Drill of the Week is the "Pendulum to Pelvic Load" drill.

This baseball drill is used to help players incorporate the hips into the delivery. Leading with the hips will help players establish a direct line to the target. Moving our hips toward the target will also help us with rotation. More rotation can result in more velocity and allow the arm to have more room to decelerate, decreasing the overall stress of the throw.

The pendulum aspect of the drill allows players to relax and find a natural spot to lift their leg. The pendulum swing also allows players to stay loose as they begin to move forward. This can be very effective for players who are to tense as they begin the delivery.This drill can be done by anyone who is looking to develop an efficient move forward; it is also effective for player who may lack rhythm and tempo. We do this drill in season and off season and is usually followed by the actual pitching motion.


Topics: baseball drills, pitching tips, pitching instruction, throwing drills, pitching drills, pitching velocity, pitching rotation, pitching mechanics, velocity drills, delivery, rotation drills, pelvic load

Ryan Armstrong | Dec 3, 2014 6:00:00 AM

Baseball Drill of the Week | "Mariano Rivera Drill"

This week's Pitching Drill of the Week is the "Mariano Rivera Drill" aka the Pre-set Pelvic Load drill.

This baseball drill is designed to help players lead with their hips in their delivery. Leading with your hips can help with velocity, rotation and finish. Using the hips to lead can also promote more of a total body throw. When we lead with the hips we are really initiating rotation starting with the back hip. If we don't do a good job starting rotation it will be very tough to continue rotation when we land. This can lead to more of an upper body throw and may place more stress on the arm.


Topics: baseball drills, pitching tips, pitching instruction, throwing drills, pitching drills, pitching velocity, pitching rotation, pitching mechanics, velocity drills, delivery, rotation drills

Ryan Armstrong | May 15, 2014 10:30:00 AM

Baseball Drill of the Week | "Rev Ups"

This week's Pitching Drill of the Week is "Rev Ups"

Rev Ups is a baseball drill we use to promote a strong arm action and connection to the body. We do this by simulating separation from glove, ensuring we start our action from the middle of the body as opposed to having the extremities take control.

When doing the drill we just need to start from simulated foot plant in an athletic position, with our lead elbow pointing to the target and our throwing elbow at shoulder height. We simply rock back and forth keeping the throwing elbow at or below shoulder height and making sure the throwing arm is loose and relaxed and doesn't get too long. When the athlete is ready to throw they want to take a short step to the target, finish with a complete follow through and focus on maintaining connection to the body. Coaching cues would be to watch for the arm getting too long and for the athlete to maintain athleticism through the drill to a full follow through on delivery. Rev Ups can be done at varying intensities.

Check out Coach Army (@tbzarmy) with a demo below


Topics: baseball drills, pitching, pitching tips, pitching instruction, throwing drills, pitching drills, pitching skills, pitching mechanics, pitching advice, connection drills, connection, arm action drills

Graeme Lehman | Feb 25, 2014 8:53:00 AM

Throwing with Over the Top Arm Slot Is Faster But More Dangerous Pt. 2

This post comes from our colleague, Graeme Lehman, in Kelowna, BC. Graeme has a great blog which you can find at If you are from the area, make sure you see Graeme.

Quick recap of Part 1 since I wrote it 3+ months ago. This article talked about a study which reported that pitchers who threw with excessive contralateral tilt could produce more velocity than those who didn’t tilt as much. This extra velocity came with a price which was more joint forces at the elbow and shoulder which could lead to an injury. The amount that each pitcher tilt’s is going to dictate which arm slot they use since the arm should always be at 90-100 degree angle from the trunk in order to maximize force and minimize injuries.


Topics: baseball injury, pitching, elbow injury, shoulder injury, pitching injuries, pitching skills, pitching mechanics, contralateral tilt, Arm slot

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