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Monday, December 17, 2012

The Sock Trick

I wanted to share with you something that Jorge Reyes of the Padres shared with me over Twitter. Like me, Jorge lives in the Northwest where it's often too cold to go throw outside..especially right now where the lows are dipping near freezing. Also like me, Jorge occasionally has issues finding people to throw with him.

He posted one day saying he couldn't find anyone to throw with so "I guess the sock trick will have to do today."  I asked him what that was all about.  So, he explained it and sent me this picture 

To do this, you'll need a long baseball sock, a baseball, and either some really good athletic tape or a basketball shooting sleeve.  I simply used the shooting sleeve that I had from surgery to cover up my incisions....anything that'll hold the sock on works.  If you throw some gas, tie a knot in the end of the sock so the seam doesn't blow out on you.

Anyway, grab the baseball in your throwing hand and shove your hand and ball down the sock most of the way.  You can see that Jorge left a little room at the end of his. This allows the baseball to travel a little way.  Then, either put the sleeve on or use the athletic tape to secure the sock to your forearm.  Don't do it so hard that you're going to cut off circulation or anything, but it's gotta be really secure. 

That's it.  Grab the baseball in the sock and get your grip.  Then go through your throwing motion and let the ball go as if you were throwing to a partner.  That's the sock trick.

It's been a real saving grace for me lately.  I have only really been able to throw my distance on Saturdays at practice but this lets me throw anytime anywhere.   I estimate distance based on the velocity and my arm angle.  You have a pretty good idea of what you need to do to throw 60 feet, 75 feet, and 105 feet.  You just replicate that indoors.  

You can also practice your grips if you're a pitcher.  I'll usually alternate between my fastball and change up grips just for variety.  

Click Here for a video of how to set it up:   Fast forward to about 3:35 and you'll see exactly how I utilize this every other day.

This has helped me immensely in my rehab.  It's incredibly important after Tommy John to stay on schedule and get your throws in.  Not only do you need to get everything "back" but your mechanics are likely to be pretty screwy.  This will help.

My fiance is pretty thankful for this.  Her hand hurt pretty bad after the last session.  I felt awful for her because she was trying to be supportive and wonderful.  I'm lucky to have her.  I'm also lucky to have great teammates who are really supportive of my recovery and are always willing to help out.

Even in 38 degree weather....under covered the Northwest.

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