What is a Slider in Baseball ? How to Throw a Slider or Sweeper

What is a slider in baseball ? If you ask yourself, What is a Slider? Most eye opening description of the Slider: is a sharp breaking pitch, when thrown correctly, explodes devastatingly, down and away from a hitter. The Slider looks like a fastball, until the batter goes to swing…..and the ball disappears out of the strike zone. That’s quite Dominant! A pitcher that has developed a good Slider which he can throw consistently, will know that even before they release the pitch, it has the ability to make even the best hitters swing and miss.

The Slider is thrown with fastball arm speed. Finger pressure, the grip and the hand angle on the release give the Slider it’s devastating break.

What is a Slider?

Why is it Easier than Throwing a Curveball?

Because the Slider is thrown like a fastball, it eliminates the mindset that you have to place the pitch. With a curveball, a pitcher can tend to be too fine in trying to locate the pitch. Or even worse, having to find the right arm speed. When a pitcher spends too much energy worrying about how to throw a certain pitch, the results do not work in the pitcher’s favor.

The Slider is an easier pitch to throw because it is thrown with fastball arm speed and the fastball mindset until the end. The best way to teach a pitcher how to throw a Slider is to think

what is a slider in baseball

What is a Slider?

What Can it Do For Your Pitching Career?

When you are able to execute a Slider consistently, it automatically puts you ahead of a large percentage of your peers. When you add a Dominant Slider to your pitching arsenal, it makes your fastball much better.

Why is that?

Because the hitter will go from sitting on your fastball to having to respect your fastball. It adds to the guessing game for the hitter.

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The Slider has Resurrected and even SkyRocketed many pitching careers. This Dominant pitch is a weapon that can and will embarrass hitters.

The more you are able to make hitters swing and miss with your Slider, creates the bigger numbers you can put up from season to season, which means the more heads you can turn from Dominant Pitching Performances, will bring your pitching career to new heights. Imagine your pitching abilities taking you to the levels of baseball that separate the pitchers from the pretenders.

Mastering a Dominant Slider can be all the

All ball players want to be remembered for something…regardless of where their career takes them. Whether it is being solely responsible for winning a game in high school or making it to the Major Leagues, we all clammer for legendary status.

Now to be blunt, baseball only has a small window in our lives of how long we will be able to play this great game. If you live to be 80, and start playing at age 5 like most people, and play competitively to the age of 25, that’s 60 years of your life, NOT playing baseball!!!! So don’t let any opportunity go to waste and be grateful every chance you get to wear the uniform.

How long you can stay in baseball depends on a lot of factors. Talent, durability, exposure, work ethic, etc. Some of these factors are simply what we are blessed with. Others, however, we can control.

One of them that we can control is our aptitude as a ball player. This is knowing what we have to do to advance. What we need to bring to the table everyday, and what dynamic aspects will make us better than our competition. Many talented players lose interest at too young of an age because of lack of this aptitude, whether is it their fault or not, it is sad to see.

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Overview of a Slider

A slider is a breaking ball that moves in many different shapes and sizes, predominantly with glove side action and 10-15 inches of drop off the FB.

This movement is created because the ball will rotate with a combination of side spin and gyro (or bullet) spin. Sliders are also usually thrown faster than a curveball and are roughly 6 to 10 mph off the fastball.

As mentioned, there are a few different families of sliders, any of which can be effective in a player’s arsenal if thrown with the right metrics. Since each SL type can be successful, it is especially important to understand what type of movement your pitch has in order to decide how to improve upon it.

How to Grip a Slider

The most common grip type among our athletes is referred to as “SL 2”. It is a standard grip that is held with the fingers slightly off-center between the inner seams. The middle finger is placed directly on a seam, while the index finger is on the leather. Both fingers are important at release to impart the necessary spin that leads to a slider’s desired movement.

The thumb is positioned for support on the opposite side of the ball and just off-center. Its position can be adjusted based on comfort. Compared to a curveball, the slider may not be tucked as deeply into the palm—although this varies between athletes.

The knuckle of the ring finger is placed on the side of the ball in order to help maintain control, while the pinky finger is completely off. After you’ve positioned your fingers comfortably, you should hold the ball with a decent amount of pressure between your thumb, index and middle fingers.

How to Throw a Slider

Throwing a slider is similar to throwing a curveball, with a few minor differences. Take a look at the example Edgertronic footage below.

Notice how the pitcher’s hand is slightly off to the side; this enables the fingers to come around and pull down on the side of the pitch to produce side spin or gyro spin and, ultimately, the desired lateral movement.

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One of the cues we recommend is to “slash the zone” with the ball, or to “throw it like a football.” The pitch should feel as if it “slides” out of the hand upon release.

Depending on your success, the pitch should move towards your glove side and appear to drop during the last few feet. If you don’t have access to high-speed video, you can pay attention to the type of spin and movement the ball has during catch play or bullpens. It might take time to develop a feel for this pitch, but further practicing and using different cues will help in your development.

what is a slider in baseball

Analyzing Slider Pitch Movement

If you’re prepared to throw on a Rapsodo device, you can analyze your pitch’s movement profile using the horizontal and vertical break plot. Note that the following graph represents right-handed pitchers and that for left-handers the results would be the mirror image.

The H&V break plot shows a spectrum of different sliders, which are highlighted in blue and located to the left of the y-axis. As shown, these pitches (from a RHP) display negative horizontal movement and a minimal amount of negative vertical movement.

As stated earlier, there are varying slider profiles. Referencing the break plot, a “frisbee slider” would fall further from the y-axis, while a “gyro slider” would fall closer to the centerpoint and a “slutter” would fall above the x-axis with a slight amount of horizontal movement. Lastly, a slurve would end up in between the blue and yellow baseballs above.

We should note that, while some slider types outperform others across a given sample (for example, frisbees tend to outperform slurves), every pitcher will find a grip and SL type that is best suited to their skills, arsenal, and comfort level (not every slurve is worse than a frisbee).

This analysis should give you an understanding of the different types so that you can analyze them when you practice, and ultimately decide what is most effective for you.

Above is information what is a slider in baseball.   Hopefully, through the above content, you have a more detailed understanding of what is a slider in baseball .Thank you for reading our post.

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