Terry Leach: Former MLB pitcher, several teams, 1991 World Series Twins

 

https://youtu.be/M8lnyMHCgpM

 

1. Could you tell us your story on dropping down?

During my senior of college, I hurt my shoulder and lost some velocity on my fastball. I signed with the Atlanta Braves and was approached by the pitching coach about dropping my arm angle down. After that started to fool around with it.

 

2. What are some of the advantages you had from your arm angle?

One major advantage you have as a sidearm pitcher is that hitters just don't see it that often. I remember Pete Rose the all time hit leader saying he had tough time facing me. Another advantage is just the sink that you get pitching from down there.

 

3. If you didn't drop down, do you think you would have had the same success?

I don't think I would have had the same success. I was right-handed and 93-94mph in college, no off-speed, that's pretty ordinary. I wasn't gonna be very effective at the pro level. Go figure when i dropped down I was 13mph slower but way more effective. Learned pitching is more than just velocity.

 

4. What would you tell someone debating on changing their arm angle?

I would say save it for a last possible resort. I do lots of lessons still and think I have only told a coule of guys to drop down.

 

5. Are there any mechanical tips that you'd give to someone throwing sidearm/submarine?

Honestly it's not much different from overhand pitching. Important to really reach out in front on the release and stay low, don't pop up when you throw. When you throw overhand, your shoulders are up and down when you throw but with sidearm they are oviously side to side.

 

6. What pitches did you throw?

I threw fastball/sinker, slider, and change-up. Gary Carter called my slider 'up-shoot' cause my slider would defy gravity, it would break and go up.

 

7. How did you pitch to lefties/righties?

To righties I would throw inside lots. Get that sinker in on them, make them turn on it. With two strikes I would throw the slider. Lefties I would stay away a lot, but also liked to come in otherwise they get used to it and cheat. I would also use that up-shoot slider to them.

 

8. Lastly what was your favorite part about pitching from down there?

Enjoyed being able to get big hitters out, MVP and Hall of Fame players out pretty easily. Enjoyed how good that felt! When things were going good everything just felt so effortless.