Pete Delkus: Former AAA RHP Minnesota Twins


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

 It’s actually the way I’ve always thrown. My dad never changed my arm angle. I find that a lot of parents/coaches now will try to change a kid’s natural release point. My release point was probably around mid-thigh. I threw hard from their in Little League and was effective. In High School I was reinforced to keep pitching from there to stick out. It’s one of those things, if it isn’t broken don’t fix it. 


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


One of my big advantages was the movement that I was able to get on my fastball. It would run into right handed hitters. That helped my get lots of ground balls as a relief pitcher in pro ball. Another advantage I had was that I was able to pitch in 4-5 games in a row. I was durable and pitching from there I felt I didn’t have much wear and tear on my arm. I also didn’t throw very hard and wasn’t a strikeout pitcher so my pitch counts were low so that helped be able to pitch back to back games. I am a believer that in order to be successful in life you need to stand out. You need to either be really exceptional at something or have some sort of gimmick. You’ll need either one or the other. I didn’t have the Mariano Rivera cutter or the Aroldis Chapman 100mph fastball so I had to mess up the hitter timing with my deception. That really is what pitching is all about messing up the hitter’s timing. 


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

Could I have thrown 95mph? I’ll never know because I never did throw from over the top. I remember teammates would always bug me to try and throw couple from over the top when warming up the OF’er in between innings. I would think I was throwing from over the top but it would really be just sidearm. 

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

 Guess if having success then why try to make something better. Same thing as before if it’s not broken then don’t fix it. Not just in baseball but in life, you need to be unique. You need to take risks at times in life in order to be successful. 

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

I don’t know if I would have any set mechanical things but no matter what your arm angle is, you need to practice, practice, practice. Repetition to make sure you are able to repeat your delivery. Flat grounds are the best way to do that. Keep your mechanics simple, the less movement the better. 

6. What pitches did you throw?

I threw 2seam fastball, slider and change up. In pro ball I was 79-80mph, maybe on a good day with wind behind my back I would get up to 81mph. But when I did throw harder the ball  would then flatten out. The one year I was sent to Instructional league specifically to work on my change-up. That’s all I threw while there. It did get better but it can be tough from down there. My manager at the time was Ron Gardenhire and he would joke to me, “Is it even possible for you to throw a changeup, a pitch can’t be slower than your fastball”

7. How did you pitch to lefties/righties?

Righties- I tried to come inside and jam them. As a relief pitcher tried come in and throw strikes and get my groundball. Lefties- Tried to be low and away, would occasionally have to come inside to get them off the plate. Really had to make sure that my slider broke inside on them. Otherwise if it just broke towards middle of the plate it was trouble, would be right into their bat. 

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

 I liked that I was different. I was always the only one on the team that pitched from there. I provided a different option for my manager to use out of his bullpen. I was a different tool in the toolbox you could say.