Re: Batting cage vs. live hitting
Posted by: Melvin (
) on Tue Apr 17 20:03:36 2001
I am one of the best batting cage hitters I've ever seen, but when I face a live pitcher, I hit more weak ground balls than anything else. Could this be because the ball is coming from a lower point at the cage? It seems that a "level" swing is different in a cage than it is against a pitcher. Perhaps I am learning bad habits by hitting line drives at a batting cage. Is there something I can do to correct this? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
The previous post contained points that often are true.
Also, many pitching machines in batting cages throw a rising ball. Some of them are lower than the plate so the balls can roll down and be reycyled automatically. In a game, of course, the ball comes down.
If you swing down on that rising ball, you will meet the plane and hit line drives. In a game, all things being equal, the same swing plane would produce a ground ball.
A hitter with the slight upswing -- the same swing that produces line drives in games -- would find frustration in a cage throwing rise balls, but great success in a game.
So. If you are a downswinger, you need to convert to an upswing to be any good in games.
Once you get it by practicing on the heavy bag, you might still want to go the cages. I reccomend finding one that doesn't throw risers. If you can't, just adjust your feedback. Low line drives in the cage are not good. Balls you think would be fly outs in those cages are line shots or home runs on a ball field. Just go in there, swing up, get the ball in the air. As long as the contact is solid, don't worry if it seems like it is being hit too high in the air.
Few hitters have the experience or discipline to do this. You are probably better off keeping to the heavy bag and hitting outside. It is just too tough to replicate proper hitting conditions in an indoor or commercial setting.
If you can get an arm machine in an outdoor cage with the machine a little higher than the plate, you have gold. But few cages I have ever seen do.
Or you can just keep hitting line drives in the cage and grounders in games. Depends on how much hassle you want to put yourself through. Most players actually stop paying attention after about the first 30 words or so of this explanation.
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