Pat Overholt: Former AAA RHP Phillies


1. Could you tell us your story on dropping down?

I started throwing sidearm in 2009 it was something that was decided with about a week left in spring training before we broke camp. I was basically told either drop down and try it or I would be given my release. They said I could break camp with the AA team and learn on the run or stay in extended spring training. I chose to go with the team and learn as I went. I struggled badly for a few weeks and couldn't find a consistent arm slot.


2. What are some of the advantages you had from your arm angle?

The advantages were that my ball had alot more sink, righties said it felt like the ball was starting behind them, and it was hard to pick up. 

3. If you didn't drop down, do you think you would have had the same success?

If I didn't drop down I'm not sure I would have gotten to AAA to be honest. I threw hard over the top (93-94) but was inconsistent. I wish I would have dropped down a few years earlier and had more time to work on it. By the time I was let go by the Phillies I struggled with going back to over the top and soon found myself out of baseball for good.

4. What would you tell someone debating on changing their arm angle?

I would tell someone debating on changing there are angle if it gives you more deception/movement try it and don't give up on it early if its uncomfortable. It's always easy to go back to what feels normal, but being different might be the only way to reach the levels of baseball you never would be able to throwing over the top. 

5. Are there any mechanical tips that you'd give to someone throwing sidearm/submarine?

Mechanical tip would be to try and repeat your delivery as much as you possibly can early on. It gets boring and repetitive but mirror work and those drills are the only way to get a fluid delivery. Also getting on top of your breaking ball was something that was very difficult for me. So flat ground work was the only thing that helped with that. 

6. What pitches did you throw?

Fastball(all 2-seam), change up, slider.


7. How did you pitch to lefties/righties?

Righties were who I was supposed to get out, but I pitched in so many roles in AA/AAA in 09' that I had to learn how to be effective against lefties as well. I had to get over the fact that lefties could see the ball longer and trust throwing my pitch to my spot was enough to get guys out. So getting over who was in the box and what side of the plate they were on took a while, but ended up helping alot. 

8. Lastly what was your favorite part about pitching from down there?

Favorite thing about throwing from down low was seeing guys who I faced in previous years-some who are successful big leaguers still-having trouble picking up the ball from down low. I remember throwing same pitches from up top wit no movement and getting hammered to dropping down and breaking bats. So my favorite thing had to be breaking alot of bats I would say. Hitters tend to get pissed when you keep sawing them off