How to Become More Durable: Be Like Lincecum and Halladay

Kevin BerthaCorrespondent IMay 23, 2010

PHOENIX - MAY 20:  Starting pitcher Tim Lincecum #55 of the San Francisco Giants pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the Major League Baseball game at Chase Field on May 20, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona.   The Diamondbacks defeated the Giants 8-7.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Tim Lincecum, all 5'11" and 170 pounds of him, has never felt his arm tingle.


The mopped-topped Bellevue, Wash. native throws over 95 mph with regularity, eats more innings than Kobayashi eats hot dogs, and has one of the most absurd (yet effective) pitching motions ever.

Lincecum, 25, doesn't even ice his arm . Yet he has won two consecutive NL Cy Young Awards.

Roy Halladay is a bit bigger than Lincecum (6'6", 230 pounds) and he throws more innings. A workout freak, Halladay has transformed himself into one of the most durable pitchers of the game.

Lincecum and Halladay also happen to be the two best pitchers in the majors, hands down.

How do men (well, one's a boy-man) average around 220 innings a year, not get injured, and remain the best pitchers in the majors?

Lincecum and Halladay like to throw a lot.

Lincecum, who is about as big as me, has the body of a gymnast, and has been working out with regularity since he was a teenager. A big part of those workouts were Lincecum's bullpens and throwing sessions with his father, Chris.

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The younger Lincecum has used the same funky motion since he began pitching. The elder Lincecum developed the motion.

While some people may say that Lincecum's pitching mechanics signal arm injury with all the contortions he twists his body into , his motion is really designed for efficiency.

The way Lincecum lifts his leg is designed to produce torque, which produces more velocity. His long stride is for velocity, also. It also helps with accuracy.

Lincecum practiced his motion a ton as a youngster. He had backyard pitching sessions with his father since he was of grade-school age. Lincecum practiced and practiced. He threw and threw.

Some may say that Lincecum throwing a ton, especially with his arm action, will produce an injury rather quickly. Well, all that throwing has lead to increased durability and increased velocity.

Halladay has also been training for a long time.

He is widely recognized as the hardest worker in baseball, and doesn't ever cut himself slack. Halladay has leg strength that some power-lifters envy, and practices harder than anyone in baseball.

During Spring Training, Halladay got up before dawn, and got to work. He trained in the morning, and often ran at night.

Although Halladay doesn't have as weird a motion as Lincecum does, he still produces velocity. His fastball tops out around 95 mph. He throws a lot, and even pitched in his childhood home.

When Halladay's father was buying a house in Colorado, he had one specification: The basement had to be at least 60'6" long so his son could practice pitching.

All that childhood work has lead to both Lincecum and Halladay's success.

Both pitchers threw and trained a lot during their childhood.

Both pitchers throw and train a lot today. 

Both pitchers have never been injured.

Both Halladay and Lincecum throw hard.

Both eat innings.

Both are durable.

The more you throw, the better you get, according to Tim Lincecum and Roy Halladay.

Wouldn't you trust their opinion?

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