Using non-dominant arm extends area baseball players' careers7:37 p.m. EST, March 29, 2012|By Austin Lyon, Orlando Sentinel
On a cold, gloomy November morning, Preston Cronk was moments from a college baseball scholarship when he arrived at North Carolina Wesleyan.
On the 12th pitch of a bullpen session in front of coaches, Cronk threw a fastball and tore a ligament in his right elbow.
He pitched through the pain, but his velocity and control were gone.
Learn more about Preston Cronk
A few dedicated ball players started throwing with their non-dominant arm following an injury.
One notable example is Billy Wagner who broke his arm twice playing football with a neighbor - so he started throwing left-handed.
Billy Wagner switched from throwing right-handed to left-handed
“When I was younger, probably 6, 7, 8 years-old I lived with my grandparents and afternoons I would come home and play hat football. We couldn’t afford a football so we played with a hat. And a guy from across the street named Chip – I still can’t remember his last name after all these years – comes in. He was about 2-3 years older than me and we were playing around and he fell on my right arm and broke my right arm. So I was in my cast and as a kid you want to play, so I played left-handed. And then I get my cast off my right arm. He comes over and breaks it again. He falls on me and breaks it playing football.
Having a cast on your right arm for that long, you figure things out a little bit if you want to play and compete with the older kids. So I ended up being left-handed. But that’s the only thing I can do. I can’t do anything else left-handed.” - Billy WagnerDuring his career, Wagner has established himself as one of the best closers in baseball, and he is perhaps best known for his ability to throw a 100 mph fastball despite having a relatively slight frame for a pitcher (Height: 5' 10", Weight: 180 lb.).