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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The Mike Schmidt Study

Posted by: The Hitting Guru (hitman3527@aol.com) on Mon Jan 9 20:23:48 2006

> I'm fairly sure that was in fact Schmidt's assertion in his book. Here is a sample of Rob Ellis' teachings. Ellis co-wrote Schimdt's book
> Musial, Aaron, Mays, DiMaggio, Ruth, Gehrig, all the successful players of the past, knew a few simple principles:
> The fastball arrives from the pitcher’s hand to the strike zone, for the most part, on a straight-line path.
> He, the hitter, must swing his bat on the same straight line as the pitch for maximum collision factor.
> If his swing bisects the straight-line path of the fastball with an uppercut, contact is minimized.
> These simple principles were put in play by DiMaggio, Dixie Walker, Vern Stephens, Ralph Kiner and nearly every other hitter featured in the vintage films. This is what they were doing. When viewed in slow motion, it almost seems like their bats are guided by invisible rails that keep it perfectly level.
> Each Of These Rail-Straight Swings Are Characterized By Three Movements:
> An angled (approximately 45 degree) approach of the bat from the stance position. As the arms and hands extend forward at this angle, the bat head lags behind, tracing out the level path to the contact zone.
> After contact, the wrists execute a flat "roll over." This flat rollover action serves to keep the bat on the level plane well after the ball has left the bat. The wrists do not roll upward into a silly, golf-type finish. This way, the rollover does not distort the end of the level path as it connects with the ball.
> The level plane and wrist rollover continue into a low finish, at or below shoulder level.

Andy. For the most part I agree with what you have said with regard to the Mike Schmidt study of a combined system. My only disagreement would be your comments regarding the upward finish. If a player can time pitches properly he can finish with an upward finish as Williams did. It is the dramatic uppercut as illustrated in the Mike Schmidt study that causes the player to loop his bat toward the pitch rather than using the slight upswing. The loop (uppercut) is what decreases the contact percentage as the hitters swing is only in the contact zone for a small period of time. But I do feel we are getting closer to the correct analysis of what is actually taking place. And though I agree with the base of much of Schmidts' philosophy, we must be aware that it is the slight upswing and not the level swing that allows the bat to stay in the hitting area longest. And since Schmidt was not a high average hitter (and struck out a lot) we must keep our minds open to more efficient ways that will promote the high average as well.


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