My 2017 had a good freshman year, Starting SS & #2 pitcher on Varsity and made Honorable Mention. However, he had one weakness which continued to his summer team, he has a problem hitting "lesser" pitchers (slower, less movement - not meant to be degrading). Against the top pitchers in high school and summer ball, he hit over .750, absolutely crushed the ball, but when he faced slower guys, he struggled. It's probably more of a mental game now, but any thoughts on how to address this problem and improve? Thanks in advance for any help.
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Practice/think hit to the opposite field.
Agree with Go44... take the same approach you take when anticipating off-speed from a top pitcher. Stay back and think oppo. One of the biggest things is to not buy in to the dugout talk - "this guy is so slow", "this guy is meat, I can't believe I didn't crush him", etc. A big part of pitching effectively is disrupting hitter's timing. A "lesser" pitcher can be very effective in that regard. It is a challenge that must be overcome just as learning to hit guys that throw 88 with good secondary stuff.
I agree. Everything is "off speed." So take that approach.
He has to keep from starting too early and hitting off his front foot. He has keep his weight back. Approach slow pitchers like BP. Just relax. They're not going to smoke him with a fastball.
In general also agree think opposite field.
However do it with authority. Don't sacrifice a good hard swing.
Everyday 2016 slowed up his swing and developed a bit of a bad habit.
Went from a major pull power hitter to hitting softer line drives center/oppo.
Now we're trying to correct back to hitting the ball hard and looking to pull.
Work on staying back longer as you would in BP like RJM stated.
Thanks a lot. Makes a lot of sense since he always tries pulling the ball. Will work hard on this this off season.
All good suggestions. I would add to the list, keep your swing. Just a bit too much over swing and it can turn a great hitter into a bad one.
Outstanding advice. Thank y'all. Sounds like my son.
For less polished pitch practice one can take the help of a pitching machine. Since it is challenging to play such less polished and spin balls, one must be well trained. A pitching machine will help you practice with a wide range of speeds and spins after which you will master the game.
Some very interesting points...
I like to tell my hitters to keep the front side in, hit the ball back up the middle.
Purpose, what do you do with an inside pitch?
Working on hitting the ball back up the middle allows the hitter to hit the ball where it is thrown. Inside pitch goes down the line, outside pitch opposite field. and down the pipe goes up the pipe. Concentration and reflexes take over.
Things you might consider is the average hitters who hits the home run pitch off the slower pitcher. Wow you hit a homerun and went 1-5, not really impressive.
There is a time to grip it and rip it. When is the time? 2-3 now you owe it to yourself to rip it. Still thinking about hitting the ball up the middle
Remember keep the front side in....
Great point made, sorry...
Keeping your front side in is when the hitter doesn't open the hips or shoulders too quickly. Yes, the hips and shoulders will open on the swing, but if you try to hit the ball up the middle sometimes its too hard to do. A slow pitcher can cause the hitter to run off and leave the pitch(be way out front).
Bottom line is the hitter steps toward the pitcher in a straight line with his body.
Try hitting a pitch up the middle with your hips/shoulders opening up too quickly, can be a difficult task.
You made a great point…