Andrew Russell: Current RHP AAA Atlanta Braves, Team Australia 2013 WBC

 

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

I used to be an outfielder in the Australian baseball league and the manager for that team is a Braves scout who saw me playing around with sidearm. I started throwing some innings and then he signed me.

 

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

Deception and sink is the main advantage against right handed batters but its less affective against leftys. 

 

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

If I hadnt have dropped down I'd still be in right field. I was 26 when Atlanta signed me so being different was something I had going for me.

 

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

 

 

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

In terms of arm angle I found that if my arm dropped below my shoulder I had run and lost sink. I'd push my change and its flat. I need my hand on top of the ball for all pitches. Stay closed,  down and through your delivery. If you don't your sinker won't be sharp, your slider will back up and your change will be flat.

 

6. What pitches do you throw?

Fastball, sinker, slider

 

7. How do you pitch to lefties/righties?

 I've started using a 4 seem fastball more against leftys, up, down, in and sinker away. Changing speed and eyesight.  Right handers are little easier. Your sinker doesn't follow the bat path the way it does left handers and creates more groundballs. Stay hard in, use your slider and if that open up the outer half use it.

 

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

My favorite part has to be the ground balls. There's less chance of getting in trouble the more you can keep it on the ground. Sometimes they find holes but over the course of the season it works out better.