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Lead Leg Block in Pitchers

Updated: May 5, 2022

What is a lead leg block in pitching?

If you frequent baseball Twitter, then you are probably familiar with the concept of a lead leg block during pitching. If you are unfamiliar with the idea, then you have come to the right place. I want to breakdown what exactly a lead leg block is, why it matters, and what we can do about it. Before we get too far into this, I am not a pitching coach so I am going to explain the mechanics just so that you are familiar with what I am talking about. After that I will be focusing more on joint and muscle forces as well as training. If you are here for pitching mechanics talk then you are in the wrong place.

It is important to understand what the lead leg block looks like in a high level pitcher. Below are several snapshots of Billy Wagner’s delivery.

lead leg block pitching
Rdikeman at the English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

Look at his front leg after it makes contact with the ground. It goes from a bent position to a straight position to a very straight position. This is the “block” that is created. When someone pitches, they may follow through and step forward or to the side, but they do not walk down the mound. The reason for this is that the anchoring of the lead leg gives you an axis to rotate around.

Imagine you were trying to punch someone as hard as possible. If yo