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Re: Re: Re: Re: thoughts on opinions

Posted by: Jack Mankin (MrBatspeed@aol.com) on Sat Sep 13 14:30:45 2008

>>> ...graylon you and jack are both making good points,i think what i was eluding to is that I was taught wrong mechanics by those talking,my father always said your power is in your hips and knock the pitchers head off with the ball eveerytime you go up there.I figured out for a long time I could hit the ball pretty hard up the middle consistently with a boggs and gwynn type inside out method and everyone was happy with a consistent 400-500 BA and no one thought about the power much until scouts came looking,I had to change my swing over time to generate power but with everyone instilling swing down at the ball ,knob to the ball and such it often messed up the process trying to do 1 thing mentally and your body saying no I have to do this to hit it 450 feet,my contention is that you must learn proper mechanics and in still them whether it comes naturally or taught and then learn what individual cues work to achieve the outcome you want.hitting it out of the mitt I am sure is a cue to [let the ball come to me]but to fathers teaching kids by that could have them hitting balls foul and late right out of the glove,I believe any drill that helps keep the hands involved in the proper manner to the overall swing is good,it prevents bat drag if all else is firing,this tilt issue I wish some of you would look closer at and ask if I turn my hips and just tilt and use my hands is that giving me optimum batspeed as someone mentioned about just hip turn and shoulder turn.I feel jacks top hand torque is an important part of the swing but could there be more with this tilt that is part of creating tht easier and more efficiently,[wait another thought just came up]could the high pitch that many never seem to catch up to be because the tilt is not so prevalent in the swing rather a more upright and forward posture is needed to hit the high fb,is it only because they are set for the lower ball and the high pitch requires a posture adjustment that they do not get to it in time.Maybe it is a combination of both and maybe this tilt helps with the running start bat quickness that allows hitters to get to the lower pitch due to the tilt necessary to be on line with the low pitch.I never thought of tilt and posture for anything more than setting the swingplane but can it help with swing quickness at initiation that is the question can it be part of what causes THT to be so effective,I dont think many hitters think like this but if they did it could help ML hitters in their true understanding of not just how to hit but why are they slumping and how to get out of it quicker,feel is good but if you understand just what you are doing then new feels and cues and total process understanding may make up the next generation of hitters like none before it. <<<

I wish some of you would look closer at and ask if I turn my hips and just tilt and use my hands is that giving me optimum batspeed

Hi Rql

Lately, while working with a number of college hitters (4, from outside CA), I have had the chance to look closely at what effect “shoulder tilting” has on bat speed and batting performance in general. A couple of these players did have more of a teeter-totter shoulder movement where there was also additional spine tilt during initiation. However, I would point out that with most batters, what some refer to as “shoulder tilt” is not actually the tilting of the shoulders and spine (like a teeter-totter) where one side must go up as the other descends.

Each shoulder unit is hinged close to the spine so that that the shoulders socket can raise and lower 3 or 4 inches as the elbow raises and lowers. Therefore, each shoulder can operate independent of the other. In the batter’s launch position, his lead-elbow is low across the chest while his back-elbow is elevated. As the back-elbow lowers to his side, the back-shoulder automatically lowers 3 to 4 inches without the batter attempting to tilt his shoulders or bend the spine.

As I mentioned above, a couple of the hitters I worked with did rotate the shoulders on a more vertical axis (like a ferris-wheel or teeter-totter). Both displayed good power for pitches middle-in and lower in the zone. However, video analysis showed problems on higher and pitches away. These problems evolved flaws in their swing planes and trouble staying connected to lead-shoulder rotation. Rotating the shoulders on a more vertical plane (like a ferris-wheel) also produced a similar vertical swing plane. As I stated before, swings on this plane can produce good power for low and inside pitches but presents real problems when trying to adjust for outside and higher pitches.

The other problem we had to correct with these mechanics was losing connection to the lead-side. As we saw in the Wright clip, a constant strong pull of the lead-side through the bottom hand is essential to generating great bat speed. Video analysis showed that rotating their shoulders on a more vertical axis caused the top-hand to accelerate ahead of lead-shoulder rotation (like throwing a ball side-armed). This induced slack in the lead-side and once slack was induced, lead-shoulder rotation was wasted taking up the slack rather than applying a strong opposing force at the handle.

Rql, the bottom line is, both batters said that after flying home and working on what we had covered, they had more power and plate coverage when practicing THT while rotating around a tilted axis and allowing their lead-shoulder rotation to accelerate their hands. One send me an e-mail (and new swing clips) saying his bat speed had jumped 7 to 8 mph and he hit 14 balls out in practice with a wood bat. -- I noted his mechanics on pitches away was much improved.

Jack Mankin


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