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Re: Today's Coaching Theories


Posted by: Jack Mankin (MrBatspeed@aol.com) on Sun May 6 12:18:59 2001


>>> Hey Jack, # 1 I want to thank you for the sharing of your excellent thought out and studied research. I am a college baseball player and your idea of swinging for the fences as a kid, I agree is a good thing. I am a switch hitter and naturally a right handed hitter. Therefore, I naturally learned the correct rotational mechanics without knowledge of the concept from my father yelling at me in the cages saying, "come on hit the ball son, swing as hard as you can". I started picking up the bat and swinging it left handed when I was 12 and was surprisingly good at it so I started switch hitting. Unfortunately, I didn't have those childhood swings in the cage of swinging as hard as I could and focused on swinging right because of starting late in age. I'm a sophomore in college and play for a very respectable program but like you said, many coaches don't understand hitting as well as they think for example "don't ever turn your back towards the pitcher" "Always step with your toe closed" "relax your elbow down" "Your pulling your head out" and I could go on forever. By studying your site, I have relearned the natural habits that I had in Middle School and H.S. I was highly touted coming into college and listened to everything my coaches told me about and hit .190. This year I threw everything they told me out the window and swing like I have growing up and am hitting around .340 on a strong Division-1 program and very strong conference. Therefore, I would say one of the most important concepts about hitting is to study it study it study it! Sean Casey prime example, father took him to the pro ball park everyday and sat behind home plate where he studied pro hitters. With the study you must then study in your mind and with bat in your hand the energies and fluidity of the swing. This summer JAck I'm playing in the Shanedoah Valley College Summer League. I'm going to practice everything on your site because I know it's right through experience. I'll let you know next year the bombs that I'll be dropping.

Thanks again, Murph <<<

Hi again, Murph

The coachable players, those that really try to do what is asked of them are the ones most hurt by well-meaning but clueless coaches. I think the emphasis should be placed more on hitting the ball hard than on the fences. But, a hitter with efficient swing mechanics should develop enough bat speed with a loose tension free swing to carry the fence in most any direction. If the batter is a little high on the ball --itís a scorching grounder Ė a little low --and .. bye,bye.

The problem is that most kids are taught back-side thrust and extend mechanics. And in this sense your coaches are correct -- all the extra grunting and shoving will not make them into power hitters. They probably would be better off placing the ball rather than trying to drive it.

>>>PS: Jack can you let me know of ANY drills that will help to do this summer in order to hit for more power and lift? <<<

Make sure your swing is not leaving energy on the table! By that, I mean most hitters develop much of their bat speed AFTER passing the contact zone. One of the heavy bag drills I described earlier will give you the best feedback info. --- Godís speed and a great year Murph.

Jack Mankin


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