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Re: Re: The Swing-Level, slight upper-cut?

Posted by: Andy (andy_paulus@yahoo.com) on Wed Jul 20 20:20:46 2005

"Mike Schmidt contends that the swing should be level, because he says the ball will start to straighten out level before contact."

Schmidt clearly flunked physics in college (Ohio University?) I've read his "study" too, and found this assertion rather humorous. He claims the ball starts at a downward angle, then levels off as it reaches home plate (???). It's funny how an "expert" can publish a book and make this assumption on the angle of the pitch, when all he needed was a video camera and a protractor to find out the truth.

My belief is that the correct swing is slightly up (5-10 degrees through contact), but I think there's an important reason besides matching the pitch plane why this is the most effective method. Simply put, If you hit the center of the ball, the angle of the swing will create the flight of the ball. In other words that 5-10 degree uppercut produces a line drive into the outfield. A "level swing" (0 degrees) is actually a ground ball, if the ball leaves the bat at 0 degrees, it will always hit the ground before the pitchers mound and need some help to become a base hit. Therefore, that "level", O degree swing needs to strike the bottom part of the ball to produce a line drive. The farther off that 5-10 degree angle the swing is, the further from the center the ball must be struck.

This can be done (Sheffield), but it's rare. The phenomonom of "catching the ball and throwing it" is far easier and more common among high-level hitters. Try videotaping a well hit ball of TV, say, a double in the gap. Stop the film the at contact, and the bat and the ball will travel at the same angle for 2-4 frames of film. Check out Garciaparra's swing at youthbaseballcoaching.com/swings for a great example of catching the ball on the bat and throwing it, or creating the flight of the ball with the angle of the swing.

> > Merry Christmas to all: What just is a level swing as it relates to hitting a baseball? Can a swing with a slight upper-cut still be considered a level swing along it's own plain? Does Ken Griffey Jr. have a level swing, did Ted Williams have a level swing in their own right? I know from reading Ted Williams book- "The Science of Hitting", that he contends the swing should contact the ball with a slight upper-cut, because the mound is 10 inches high and the ball is traveling downward, so he states that the hitter should meet the ball with a slight upper-cut to mazimixe the hitting area to the bat. In contrast, Mike Schmidt contends that the swing should be level, because he says the ball will start to straighten out level before contact. My thoughts are should you not just simply hit the ball on the same plain in comes in on? Steve T, I know you must be shocked that I auctually read a book without pictures..ha..ha. Looking forward to hearing everyone's thoughts..humbly..dog


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