Hitting is hard. You fail 7 out of 10 times and your a hall of famer. Blah, Blah, Blah.
All baseball players have heard this at one point or another. Its a blanket statement that coaches use as an excuse to help struggling players feel better about themselves. Its OK, this a mind set that great players have. Its called “resilience”, or the ability to withstand or recover from difficult situations.
Like I said, hitting is hard. There are failures and there are streaks. As a competitor, our job is to make the best of each opportunity we are given. Opportunities are sometimes few and far between and we must capitalize on each opportnity given.
In order to understand my view here we have to first look into the goal itself. Hit this baseball, which is roughly 2.9 inches in diameter, while it is being thrown at you at anywhere from 70-100 MPH. Ohh, and we will also allow someone to apply various spins and rotations to the ball to make it change direction in flight and we will put 9 guys out there trying to catch it. Simple right?
Now with that being said, how do we make ourselves more succesful as a hitter?
First we use the time given in a practice environment to perfect our swing. In the course of the game we are unable to manage the environment, the umpire, pitcher, weather, lighting, field, etc. In practice you can ensure the environment is perfect for hitting. You can use a tee, soft toss, batting practice, pitching machine, etc. Once you are able to control your BP environment (to the best of your ability) we must produce quality swings and then reproduce quality swings.
Second we need to video ourselves. One of the easiest ways to evaluate our swings is to watch ourselves hit. Video yourself and then analyze, make an adjustment and video again. Its one of the best tools available to hitters in this day in age.
Third, watch a good hitter hit. If you have access to a professional team or college team take the time to get to the field early and watch the teams take batting practice. While watching a good hitter take batting practice focus your attention on something you need to work on. Try and see what it is they are doing and keep it in your mind for the next time your hitting in the cage.
Finally, just hit.
Thats it, its not that hard, just hit. Take as many swings as you can. The saying practice makes perfect literally applies beautifully in this situation.
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Until next time, see you in the cage!