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Re: Re: Stride

Posted by: rql () on Tue May 22 19:07:45 2001

I have been told by my coaches this year to step towards the plate if the pitch is outside and to step away from the plate if it is inside. I have always heard it was bad until now. What should I do?
> If you play at a high level (high enough to have fast pitchers - not Little League 40 MPHers), there are two problems with this approach.
> The first is that there is very little time between then moment when you read whether a pitch is inside or outside and the moment when your front heel comes down/front knee rotates toward pitcher/lower body part of swing starts. To stride in a particular direction and get the foot down in time seems at least problematic to me. It could lead to stride swinging. If so, the result will be an inability to adjust to off-speed pitches.
> The second problem is that strides that end up significantly open or closed can have a significant effect on how the hips turn into the swing (a major power source if used correctly). Usually the stride is perpendicular to the alignment of the back foot. A closed stance strides closed, an open stance strides open. Your coaches are asking you to do one or the other on a moment's notice. Different foot alignment can affect hip turn and body turn.
> One variation I have seen is the Tony Bautista/Chris Stynes approach. They have a very open stance and stride to 'normal'. Maybe if you watch them, you can see if they really adjust the front foot landing according to the pitch location. If so, then it is possible.
> However, the vast majority of Major Leaguers either have a consistent stride or hit no stride. I don't know of any examples of ML'ers who do what your coaches suggest. That should give you some concern.
> You should read through posts here at Batspeed where Jack Mankin talks about hitting with power to the opposite field. He describes an effective way to cover both sides of the plate using a completely different approach than front foot placement. Watch Manny Ramirez hit with power to right-center. Then figure out how to 'manage' your coach.
> A theory I have on this is that those who say they do it and are successful hitters may actually be opening their front toe more on the pull and keepinf the toe more closed on away pitches though landing in the same place.


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