Sunday, May 20, 2012

Kid Switch Pitchers

Over the years, there have been a few kids who learned to pitch with both arms. Most of the ambidextrous pitchers started throwing with both hands before they played Little League baseball.

Here are some interesting stories and videos of kids who switch pitched in games.

Aiden McNasby is an 8 year old switch pitcher. (2011)

Switch Pitcher at age 14 (indoor bullpen session)
Switch Pitcher and Hitter at age 11 (game video)

Nick Bohannan has been throwing with both arms since he was two-years-old. As an 8th grader he was throwing 65 mph right- and left-handed. Bohannan uses a custom Mizuno glove with six fingers for switch pitching.

13-year-old Ambidextrous Pitcher (FOX2, 2011 video)
Nick "Bo" Bohannan - O'Fallon, Missouri
Nick Bohannan Switch Pitcher, age 11 (2009 video)
9-Year-Old Gives Team Two Pitchers For The Price Of One (

Jesse Harris switch pitching in a game. (2008)
Jesse Harris - demonstrating a custom six-finger Mizuno glove (2007)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Ryan Perez - ambidextrous pitcher throws 90 mph

Ryan Perez - Hyannis Harbor Hawks
BHP = Both Hand Pitcher (ambidextrous)

Born: October 27, 1993
City: Hampshire, Illinois

High School: Westminster Christian2012

Cape Cod League, 2014

Height/Weight: 6' 0", 180 lbs.
Bats: Switch hitter
Throws: Both, ambidextrous

Glove: Akadema 6-finger ambidextrous glove

Velocity: up to 94 MPH as LHP in college

In 2015, Perez threw 91 mph with both arms in a college game.

In high school Perez threw his fastball in the upper 80's with both arms for strikes. 
He touched 90 mph pitching in high school!

Pitches | mph:
FB 89; CH 80; CB 86; SL 78
(source: Perfect Game 2011)

Ryan Perez Stats - Westminster Christian Baseball
  Sr. year (2012)
  Jr. year (2011)

Judson Eagles Baseball


An Ambidextrous pitcher wows Cape Cod Baseball League
by Eric Olsen | AP,  August 3, 2014

Ryan Perez might look back someday and say having Tommy John surgery on his right arm was the best thing that could have happened to his left.

That’s right, his left.

The 20-year-old from tiny Judson University in Illinois is one of baseball’s rare ambidextrous pitchers. He’s been all the rage in the prestigious Cape Cod League since he touched the low 90s on the radar gun — with both arms — in last week’s All-Star game.

The 6-foot, 190-pound Perez said he’s happy to pitch with either arm.
“But 90 right-handed is not special in the major leagues. Everyone throws 90,” he said. “As a lefty you can get away with it because it’s more a rarity.”

Listen to an interview with ambidextrous pitcher Ryan Perez
When Ryan Perez was 3-years-old his dad encouraged him to toss rocks into a pond with both arms. At the time of the interview, Perez was throwing 89 mph right-handed and 87 mph left-handed.

Westminster's Perez Picks His School - prep baseball report

Judson University landed a major coup when it received a commitment from the No. 12-ranked player in the Illinois, LHP/RHP Ryan Perez from Westminster Christian HS – marking the first time a top 20 player has picked an NAIA school in recent memory.
The 6-foot, 180-pound Perez is the rarest of talents: a pitcher who can throw equally well with either arm. From the right side, Perez has been up to 91 mph. From the left side, Perez’s fastball sits in the upper-80s to go along with a more advanced curveball.

Westminster's Ryan Perez set for one last playoff run - Courier-News

In 2012, Perez was recovering from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Erik Jacobsen wrote:

Perez sustained the elbow injury last October while pitching at the WWBA World Championship in Jupiter, Fla. He has maintained his status as one of the top pitchers in the state by continuing to throw with his left hand during the recovery process, and he could begin throwing off a mound with his right hand for the first time in a matter of weeks.

Perez has continued to post outstanding numbers this year despite only pitching from the left side. He owns a 7-1 record, a 0.95 ERA and a whopping 119 strikeouts compared to only 15 walks in 59 innings of work.

Westminster Christian pitcher Ryan Perez was perfect Tuesday. Again.

Perez, an ambidextrous pitcher throwing left-handed only this season while his right elbow heals from Tommy John surgery, tossed the third perfect game of his career in a Northeast Conference game against a young lineup from Alden-Hebron.

Ryan Perez became Westminster Christian’s all-time leader in career strikeouts last Wednesday.

One day later the ambidextrous standout took a big step in his recovery from Tommy John surgery when he played first base right-handed for the first time since undergoing the procedure on his right elbow in November.

Perez sustained the elbow injury last October while pitching at the WWBA World Championship in Jupiter, Fla. He has maintained his status as one of the top pitchers in the state by continuing to throw with his left hand during the recovery process, and he could begin throwing off a mound with his right hand for the first time in a matter of weeks.

Perez, a rising senior from Westminster Christian High in Elgin, Ill.,who also played in the tournament back in 2009, worked eight innings during the series—four with each arm—and struck out 11 while yielding two runs on three hits and walking four in three appearances.
Perez, who is listed at 5-foot-11 and 165 pounds, impressed more as a lefthander, showing a smoother arm path and longer stride, and usually throws as a southpaw more often in high school because he plays the left side of the infield with his right arm.

Ryan Perez - Switch Pitcher, Judson University


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Tyler Hopman - Ambidextrous pitcher, New Jersey

Tyler Hopman
Tyler Hopman - Kean University

Hometown: Matawan, NJ
Old Bridge High School, New Jersey

Class: 2015
Team: Old Bridge Knights

College: Kean University, NJ
- football and baseball

Positions: LHP, CF - right-handed
Height/Weight: 6'5" 190 lbs
Bats: Right
Throws: Both (Ambidextrous)
Velocity: 82 mph (7/4/2014

Sports: WR Football

2015 HS stats
5-3, 59 IP, 2.02 ERA

About Tyler Hopman
Tyler Hopman is a switch pitcher who plays for Old Bridge High School Knights in New Jersey. In an interview, he said that he feels a lot stronger throwing lefty.

When not pitching, Hopman plays center field right-handed. He bats exclusively from the left side.

As a kid, he started throwing with both hands when he was 5-years-old. His dad suggested that he should throw 20 righty and 20 lefty each day. 

Hopman pitched right- and left-handed in Little League. 

Old Bridge’s Hopman is HNT’s 2015 Postseason Baseball Player of Year

The remarkable run of Old Bridge High School’s Tyler Hopman in the NJSIAA and Greater Middlesex Conference tournaments came to an unceremonious end with a state Group IV semifinal loss to Williamstown in which the ambidextrous senior was saddled with a deceptive loss.

Hopman, a senior pitcher and second baseman who has been named the Home News Tribune’s Postseason Player of the Year, was consistent on the mound throughout 2015 but found his own at the plate in the playoffs.

After batting ninth and even being DH’d for on occasion during the regular season, Hopman entered the Central Group IV final against Hunterdon Central batting .571 (8-for-14) in the NJSIAA Tournament with two homers (including a game-tying solo blast against Jackson Memorial), two doubles, four runs scored (including the game-winner in the sectional quarterfinals) and three RBI.

Ambidextrous pitcher to face boisterous foe in NJSIAA Group IV baseball semifinal
By Greg Tufaro,, 30 May 2015

With an ambidextrous pitcher taking the mound against an opponent known to chatter incessantly throughout the game, expect the entertainment value of Tuesday's NJSIAA Group IV semifinal between Old Bridge and Williamstown to match the quality of play on the field.

The South Jersey champion Braves (20-5-1) will start ace Denny Bentley, a junior lefthander with a 9-0 record who several Division I schools, including Penn State University, is recruiting, against senior Tyler Hopman, a St. Peter's College signee who can throw with either arm.
Read More

Magic of Hopman, Cruz lift Old Bridge to CJG4 baseball title
By Greg Tufaro,, 29 May 2015

Just when it appeared the magic in Tyler Hopman's bat and Luis Cruz's right arm may have run out, the sectional playoff heroes continued to find ways to extend the Old Bridge High School baseball team's storybook postseason.

Old Bridge baseball uses team effort to reach sectional final

By Greg Tufaro,, 27 May 2015

Ambidextrous hurler Tyler Hopman (5-3, 59 IP, 2.02 ERA) has emerged as the team’s postseason ace, defeating Central Group I finalist Middlesex in the Greater Middlesex Conference Tournament quarterfinals, beating GMCT runner-up Sayreville in the opening round of the sectionals and pitching eight brilliant frames against Jackson Memorial.

Hopman has also exceeded expectations at the plate, batting .571 (8-for-14) in the NJSIAA Tournament with two homers (including a game-tying solo blast against Jackson Memorial), two doubles, four runs scored (including the game-winner in the sectional quarterfinals) and three RBI.

“Hopman has been absolutely awesome,” Freel Sr. said. “Pitching-wise he’s pretty much put us on his back and carried us. You couldn’t ask for more from the kid.”

In addition to Hopman, who batted ninth and was occasionally DH’d for during the early part of the season but now leads the team with a .391 average, Jimmy Freel Jr. has also turned things around at the plate.

Old Bridge baseball team to rely on pitching, defense


Ambidextrous senior Tyler Hopman also returns to give the Knights a solid one-two combination on the hill. Hopman went 5-2 a year ago with an ERA just above 3.00. 

Hopman will likely play first base when not pitching.

* * *

Old Bridge freshman a switch-pitcher

May 4, 2012

Tyler Hopman
The lanky southpaw warming up in the Old Bridge High School baseball team’s bullpen looked just as impressive as the tall right-hander who followed an inning later.
Although neither reliever entered the game against Edison that April afternoon, Eagles assistant coach Rob Roma asked his counterpart about the two hurlers.
“I said, ‘You had two nice kids warming up: a righty and a lefty. What grades are they?’ ” Roma explained. “He goes, ‘No, man. That’s the same kid.’ I’m like, ‘What are you talking about?’ He says, ‘Same kid.’ I go, ‘Come on!’ He says, ‘No. He’s a freshman.’ ”

Old Bridge Knights - Freshman Team 2012

   1.79 ERA, 27.1 IP, 16 SO, 14 BB, 4 HBP
   in 12 games pitched

Tyler Hopman #6, Pitcher

17u Showcase Blue Summer 2013

   .345 BA, .367 OBP, 10 hits, 3 RBI, 5 Runs


Switch pitcher creates challenge for coaches

Switch-pitcher creates unusual strategy

The Times Online Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Something strange happened at the ballpark last Friday night as the IronPigs hosted the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees.
Normally, managers have to deal with the righty/lefty match-ups as the game progresses. The chess game of matching up a left-handed pitcher versus a left-handed hitter is something that is quite normal. A switch-hitting batter ads a new dynamic to the equation.
To make it more confusing, Lehigh Valley manager Ryne Sandberg was introduced to something unusual and rare – a switch pitcher. The IronPigs faced Pat Venditte who can pitch effectively with both arms and has a specially-made six-fingered glove fashioned to switch arms on the mound.
"It's impressive and very unique," Sandberg said of Venditte and his career 2.40 ERA in the minors. "If the guys got quality from both sides it may work to his advantage."

How to find a pitching coach

Depending on where you live, it can be very challenging to find a good pitching coach. Here are a few suggestions for finding a pitching coach in your area. Good luck.

One option is to contact a local college baseball coach and ask if they can recommend a pitching coach in your area. Some college coaches hold pitching camps or small group lessons.

Ask a local college pitcher who they trained with when they were in high school. They often can provide suggestions on who to contact for pitching instruction.

In the Seattle area, the University of Washington, Seattle U, and Bellevue College offer excellent baseball camps and clinics. The cost ranges from $40 for a two-hour clinic  -- up to $300 for a six-week class. Figure around $20 to $50/hour for instruction, depending on player/coach ratio.

Baseball Training Facilities:
Most indoor baseball facilities offer pitching lessons. Instructors usually played in college or in the minor leagues.

Greater Seattle: check out the The K Center in Columbia City, Stods Baseball in Bellevue, RIPS Baseball in Burien, and WBI in Woodinville. Driveline Baseball in Puyallup trains some of the top pitchers in Washington and Oregon.

Select Teams:
Select teams often have pitching coaches on staff or they can recommend a coach for private lessons.

Baseball Players:
Former college and pro pitchers sometimes offer pitching lessons.
If you see a good pitcher, ask them - Who is your pitching coach?

Check the local newspaper for baseball camps and select teams. Some pitching coaches place ads in the local paper.

     Camps and Tryouts - Seattle Times

Social Media:
Sign up for a baseball mailing list that announces baseball training programs.
Check Facebook or Twitter to find out about baseball camps.

  For example: su_baseball

Search the Web:
One potential resource is

The Dynamic Pitcher is a completely NEW way of developing elite youth baseball talent. Learn how to improve fastball velocity, command, control, arm strength, arm speed, durability, and health.

Pat Venditte - one step away from major leagues

Former CU switch-pitcher is one stop from Bronx

Published Wednesday May 2, 2012

His name never shows up on those lists of hot prospects. His club left him unprotected during the offseason. His talent is still considered a novelty by some observers.
Pat Venditte's response to all that is to go out and get outs, just as he has since the New York Yankees four years ago gave the ambidextrous pitcher from Omaha a chance to fulfill a dream of becoming a professional baseball player.

And Venditte is doing it this season just one step away from the major leagues, pitching for Scanton/Wilkes-Barre in the Class AAA International league. The former Creighton All-American's slow but steady climb through the organization has him in a place few expected he'd reach when the Yankees picked him in the 20th round of the 2008 free-agent draft.