A quarter for the release of a back of the hand changeup
Most of the time I teach a backhand change, which requires the pitcher to drag the ball through the release zone knuckles-first. But sometimes that one doesn’t work. So the backup plan is the back of the hand change.
With this pitch, you bring it down normally, then spin the hand around so the little finger is facing the plate, with the back of your hand facing your thigh.
One of the challenges of the back of the hand changeup is learning to get the hand spun around at the proper time so the ball actually does come out the other side. If you don’t it just becomes a bad fastball, or maybe a handshake change at best.
Young pitchers in particular don’t always understand how quickly the hand needs to turn, so here’s an activity they can do to get the hang of it. All they need to do is take a quarter (or a half dollar or a silver dollar, anything round and decently sized) and spin it counter-clockwise on the table (for a right handed pitcher; a lefty spins it clockwise).
The idea is to get the coin spinning as fast as you can while turning the hand in the proper direction. Pitchers can challenge themselves to see how long they can keep the coin spinning with a tight rotation.
A little time spent indoors on a rainy day can make a huge difference out on the field.