Lima Locos: Summer Baseball and Player Development

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As many of you know I am currently the head coach for the Lima Locos in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League. When I decided to take this job I knew my main goal was going to be to help our players go back to their schools in the Fall better and more valuable to their teams. Summer baseball is a more laid back atmosphere than school ball, but in my opinion if you're going to play you my as well get better and work on your weaknesses. In order to do that you first need to know what your weaknesses are.

My staff and I have taken every player through a movement/mobility screen, as well as a strength and speed assessment. To me, if you are going to try to make changes with players you first need to know where they are at RIGHT NOW. Not everyone has the mobility to get the separation you want or the core strength to be able to resist rotation until the right time in the throwing delivery. Below is a picture of the strength and speed assessment we tested and the averages for each category.

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Now that we have baseline numbers on all our guys, they each have their own strength and throwing program to improve their weaknesses and reach their goals. We are only a few weeks in and we are seeing guys improve everyday in one way or another. 

Another way we are trying to help our players is with the use of weighted balls, blast motion for hitters, and radar gun to measure throwing and exit velocity. Our hitters are fortunate enough to have Patrick Jones as their hitting coach. Pat does a great job implementing blast motion sensors to measure their bat speed, attack angle, and much more. With the combination of that, video analysis, and mechanical drill work our hitters have a huge edge over the competition. The results speak for themselves as we are currently leading the league in almost every offensive category. 

With pitching being my background, all of our pitchers have an extensive warm up routine, pre-throwing drills, and recovery circuit to improve arm health, arm strength, mobility, and velocity. 

Below is an example of what a pitcher would do on a start day.

  • Myofascial Release (foam roll, lacrosse ball, massage stick, barbell rollout)
  • T-Spine Mobility
  • Hip Mobility
  • Dynamic Warm Up
  • Jaeger Band Routine
  • Wrist Weight Routine
  • Shoulder Tube
  • Upward Tosses
  • Rebounders
  • Plyo Ball Work (reverse throws, pivot picks, roll ins, rockers, walking wind up)
  • Long Toss 
  • Short Flat Ground Before Going to Mound
  • Pre-Game Bullpen
  • Pitch in Game
  • Recovery Circuit (bands, pull apart series, rebounders, upward tosses, waiter walks, etc.)
  • Modalities (Marc Pro, flossing, cupping, graston, etc.)

As you can see our pitchers aren't just showing up to the ballpark and walking on to the mound. Each and every player has a plan and a routine that they execute. If you want to separate yourself from your competition you have to be willing to do what they won't. 

As the summer goes on I will continue to write about the progress and the conclusions we are able to draw from the data we collect. Patrick and I will also be doing a weekly podcast talking about the Locos and the things we are doing with the team. The first episode is up and you can check it out by clicking on the link below!

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/patrick-jones-baseball/id1282221540?mt=2 

- Jared