Activities Sports & Athletics How to Throw a Slider Pitch, Step by Step Share PINTEREST Email Print Getty Images/Hero Images Sports & Athletics Baseball Playing & Coaching History Best of Baseball Gear Basketball Bicycling Billiards Bodybuilding Bowling Boxing Car Racing Cheerleading Cricket Extreme Sports Football Golf Gymnastics Ice Hockey Martial Arts Professional Wrestling Skateboarding Skating Paintball Soccer Swimming & Diving Table Tennis Tennis Track & Field Volleyball Other Activities Learn More By Scott Kendrick General Editor, ESPN The Ohio State University Scott Kendrick is a sports writer and editor for ESPN and covered Major League Baseball and other sports for newspapers in Cleveland and Florida. our editorial process Scott Kendrick Updated May 13, 2019 As it is with all of pitching, whether you're throwing a slider, a fastball or other typical pitch, keeping your intentions secret is a big part of the battle. The first rule of thumb: Keep the ball hidden in your glove when you're throwing, or you might tip off the batter (or a baserunner or base coach) what pitch you're throwing. 01 of 04 What's a Slider? Side view of a slider grip. Scott Kendrick The slider is part fastball, part breaking ball. It's more like a fastball because it's more effective the faster it's thrown. The slider breaks late, meaning close to the batter, which makes it one of the most effective pitches in baseball. 02 of 04 The Slider Grip Grip the outer third of the ball when throwing a slider. Scott Kendrick The grip of slider is similar to a two-seam fastball, with the middle finger and index finger across the two widest seams. The difference is that the fingers should be slightly off-center, toward the outside of the ball, like you're just holding the outside third of the ball. Your thumb should be tucked under the ball, with the ring and pinkie finger off to the side. Apply pressure to the ball with your thumb and middle finger. 03 of 04 Throw It Like a Fastball Another view of the slider grip. Scott Kendrick Like a curveball, a pitcher must keep their wrist loose when throwing a slider. Throw the ball the same way you'd throw a fastball. Imagine cutting through the ball with your middle finger as you throw the pitch. The ball should roll off your hand off your index finger, which is what gives the slider its spin. 04 of 04 Following Through Getty Images/Jimak Wind up normally and throw. Don't forget to follow through. When you don't follow through, the ball will likely stay high.