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Contact

Be able to hit with a stripped down version of your swing.


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JoshuaPerich Bio-2

More often than not, when you are in a slump, it is your setup and not your swing that is out of whack. A broken setup can be catastrophic to a hitter, making it virtually impossible to be able to hit live pitching. All of the little things we add to our swing to help generate momentum and additional power, are extremely effective when we are on time, however, when our timing is off with any one of these items it is difficult to fix them without a bunch of trips to the batting cages. And even then without someone who knows what they are looking for helping you, it can be difficult to fix simply because batting cage pitches aren't exactly the same as "Live Pitching".

One of the best ways to "feel" what is wrong is to be able to be able to hit without all those extra mechanical items. Even if it is only for drills and practice, hit without a stride and pay attention to your body. If you get 20 swings during your batting practice take 5 without a stride, if you get 10 swings take 2 or 3. Often, you can tell how good of shape your swing is in by how difficult it is to hit without a stride (not saying you will like it, but you will be able to hit if your swing is sound). Hitting without a stride will allow you to feel your body a little better, you will be able easily
stabilize your head and it should be very easy to make solid contact.

After regaining control of your body by hitting without a stride, slowly add back all the additional items, start with hands loading, then a simply stride, etc...




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Hit from an Athletic Position


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This one is very simple... In any sport you play, the more often you are in an athletic position, the better you will do! Hitting is no different. This means, when we hit, we shouldn't be too narrow, nor too wide. An athletic position is somewhat unique to everyone, though it is always wider than shoulder width. The easiest way to find yours is to simply pretend you are fielding a ground ball or playing defense in basketball. The width that your feet go when you go to field a ground ball is your athletic position. You will also notice that while you are pretending to field that ground ball your chest will line up directly over your knees which will also be directly over the balls of your feet.

DeeGordonStanceMay62013

Starting out your stance in an athletic position will help ensure that your body won't have to make any quick jerky movements to get itself into an athletic position in order to take your swing. Often I find that hitters who are in slumps are guilty of straightening up their upper body such that their knees are over the balls of their feet, but their chest isn't. Then their first movement (which they are unaware of) is to throw their upper body over their knees while they are trying to stride or load causing some difficulties at picking up the ball early.

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See the ball As Clearly As Possible.


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JoshuaPerich Bio-2

Your eyes work like a camera... If the camera (your head) is moving, it takes blurry pictures. If they are taking blurry pictures, then how can you be able to hit the ball squarely. This is by far the most important lesson in baseball. If you can hit... you won't sit! Too many players confuse hitting with hitting with power. Hitting with power is great and a player that can hit and hit with power is a God send, a player who can hit but doesn't hit for power is a scrapper, but a player who can hit for power but can't make contact is a disappointment.

No matter how hard you swing, it only matters if that hard swing makes solid contact, because without it, it is simply a strike. When you ask most players what they think is important for them to think about when they are hitting, sometimes you will hear "Keep your eye on the ball." Though keeping your eye on the ball is important, making sure that your head is stable throughout your swing is just as critical.

Too many young hitters throw their bodies around while they are hitting which causes heads to move all over the place. Remember, if you put a camera on a tripod but you kick the tripod, the camera is still going to take blurry pictures.

Take a look at this video of Miguel Cabrera hitting. When the camera view switches to show his swing from the side take notice how stable his head is.





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