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During pregame bullpen warmup Chris Young warms up with a four-seam fastball.

A four-seam fastball, also called a rising fastball, a four-seamer, or a cross-seam fastball, is a pitch in baseball. It is a member of the fastball family. Compare the two-seam fastball.[1]

Throwing mechanics

Richard Hillhouse (also known as,"The Hammer"), a former pitcher for the Triple AAA Reds describes the pitch as such; "A four seam fastball is called a four seam fastball because when the ball is thrown the ball rotates such that there are four seams rotating in the air. This pitch typically will stay straight depending on your arm angle. Your arm angle is the angle at which your arm is when you release the ball. The lower your arm angle, the more the ball will move on this pitch and the higher the arm angle, the less the ball will move on this pitch. To grip the four-seam fastball, place your index and middle fingertips directly on the parallel seams of the baseball. The "horseshoe seam" should face into your ring finger of your throwing hand... I call it the horseshoe seam simply because the seam itself looks like the shape of a horseshoe. Next, place your thumb directly beneath the baseball, resting on the smooth leather... Ideally, you should rest your thumb in the center of the horseshoe seam on the bottom part of the baseball. Grip this pitch softly, like an egg, in your fingertips. There should be a "gap" or space between the ball and your palm... This is the key to throwing a good, hard four-seam fastball with maximal backspin and velocity: A loose grip minimizes 'friction' between your hand and the baseball. The less friction, of course, the quicker the baseball can leave your hand." [2]


  1. ^ Kindall, Jerry (1988). Baseball: Play the Winning Way. Time, Inc.. ISBN 1-56800-000-6. 
  2. ^ Ellis, Steve (27 April 2008). "Pitching Grips: How to Throw 10 Baseball Pitches". The CompletePitcher. Retrieved 2008-08-23. 


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