Looking for a Great Gift?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Weekly John Maine Update

Last I talked about John Maine at length was when he left his start after five pitches, and I made the comment that he had thrown his last pitch as a New York Met. He has since made two rehab starts (topped out at 88 mph), and now has a complaint that "he doesn't feel right." He was expected to see the doctor yesterday, but that didn't happen according to the reports.

Maine is definitely on the path to being non-tendered at the end of the year, and my prediction he's thrown his last pitch as a Met is looking better and better each day.

This picture was taken back on April 30th versus the Dodgers when he threw 80%+ fastballs, but that picture says 1000 words, as he's stiff and can't finish his pitches. Whether this is a result of a shoulder problem, I don't know for sure.

Also from the same game, it doesn't look like he's using his glove-side at all, just trying to generate all his velocity from his right shoulder.

What does anyone else see based on these pictures/video from Maine's recent starts? Think this could result in a pretty good pitching mechanics discussion.


  1. I agree with you. I think he and Ollie are probably done as Mets. Maine was never an innings eater and usually was at 100 pitches by the 5th inning. Yes, he had some good starts, but his pitch count was always high.

    Eating Ollie's contract is obviously going to be tough, but unless he completely changes his mentality and his game, he's done too.

  2. Stan the Man - Braves fanJune 23, 2010 at 10:38 AM

    Ok thoughts on the mechanics...

    The main thing to notice about both of these pictures is legs, legs, legs. The first picture is the most telling of the two pictures, so lets take a look at the second one first.

    In the second picture, first look at his shoulder and the relationship his elbow and the ball are to the rest of his body. His chest is already out in front over his left leg with the appearance it is ready to throw the ball because it is square to home plate. His shoulder is still tilted way back towards his elbow and the ball. His shoulder should be more square in line with his chest to alleviate pressure on his shoulder and to fully use the torque of his chest/hips. This could be a cause of his shoulder pain, it could be a result, but is more likely a cause of the pain and him "not feeling right". (for a demonstration, put your throwing arm out like you would be signalling a right turn, stick your chest out while leaning forward while trying to keep your arm in the same position, and then turn your hand so its pointing backwards...basically put your arm and upper body in the position he is in. Feel the strain on your shoulder...?).

    Next look at his left foot, his landing leg. Notice how if you were standing behind him you would see it is to the right of his right foot, his push leg. As a result, this closes you off to home plate because you are no longer going straight to home. Doing this causes more stress on your shoulder from having to turn that much further around toward home (it can also cause you to lose speed from being blocked off from going straight to home and it can cause you to be wild).

    From this picture (can't get it to show here), that i dont know when was taken, you can see what i am talking about. See how his lower half his going one way and his upper body is having to lean back to go towards home? More stress on your shoulder.

    Let's go on to the first picture in the blog. This is the most telling of the two pictures. It almost looks like he is just trying to place the ball in the catchers mitt. That is mainly because he is not using his legs at all in this picture. He should be pushing harder with his right leg to help propel him down the mound and to cut down the distance from release point to home plate. This can also be a cause of a sore shoulder. If you dont't use your legs to push yourself down the hill, your shoulder and arm have to do most of the work to get itself to throw hard. (take this from a chicken legged pitcher that threw 90. After doing it for a while, your shoulder wears down from all the extra effort it had to do. Look at most pitchers that last long, they have tree trunks for legs).

    Also in this picture, you can see (as Anthony put it) that he is not using his glove-side. You have to have some pull in and back with your glove-side, especially on breaking pitches. This helps to twist your upper half toward home plate and helps to rotate your shoulder and arm toward home. NOT doing this can cause more shoulder pain from the added stress of having to push itself toward home. On breaking pitches it can stop you from having a downward pull on the ball to get the pitch to break or drop.

    By not pushing yourself down the hill, it can also cause you to leave the ball up since you are throwing on a higher plane.

    He's just not finishing his pitches, or using the rest of his body. He's putting all the stress on his shoulder. This is usually a cause of a sore shoulder, not a result. So again, i think there is a reason "he doesn't feel right" still.