The value of the change
The fact that the changeup is a good pitch is nothing new. Still, everyone gets so impressed with the movement pitches (especially the riseball fans) that we can forget just how effective a good changeup can be. This past weekend I was reminded of it.
We were playing in a tournament with some very good teams. Since I coach an 18U team, we saw some kids who are either college softball players or college softball-bound.
There were some darned fine hitters in this tournament, and they were doing their thing. Fortunately, my daughter Kimmie’s changeup was working well this weekend. She is far from overpowering, but has good movement on the ball and a well-disguised change. She threw that change early and often, and it did its job, keeping hitters off-balance. While they were putting the bat on some of them, they usually resulted in popups or weak fly balls. There were also a number of freezes and swing-throughs.
The previous weekend, by the way, the change wasn’t working nearly as well and she got rocked a couple of times. But with the changeup in hand she was able to do better against better hitters.
If you haven’t worked the change in a while it’s time to revisit it. The changeup is your friend!