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Re: Re: Re: Re: Stop making it so complicated!

Posted by: daw () on Wed May 13 14:37:46 2009

> > > > Hey Guys,
> > > >
> > > > How do you hit at the big league level? How do you catch up to those 95 mph fastballs?
> > > >
> > > > http://blog.swingtraining.net/page/2.aspx
> > > >
> > > > Scroll down and watch the part that says " Arod: Creating a compact swing". Obviously easier said than done. But this is how the elite do it. I promise if you go in there thinking "rotate the shoulders" or "circular hand path" you will not even sniff the ball.
> > > >
> > > > What's the key to this high level swing? Well there are a few things obviously such as balance, timing, batspeed, all the generic obvious stuff. But if anybody wants to become better I suggest you listen to Arod at the end of the video and really think about what he is saying.
> > > >
> > > > If anybody is interested let me know I will go into it and explain what he is doing and what are the MOST IMPORTANT things to work on in the batting cage.
> > > >
> > > > For what it's worth, I am close with Arod's "father figure" who runs the Kendall Boys Club down in Miami, he raised Arod and knows exactly how he thinks about hitting. (Even though he tells you at the end of the video what changes he made to his swing).
> > > >
> > > > I am just trying to help anyone who wants to improve their game or talk about hitting. Good luck to all of you prospects out there.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > A very interesting clip and it reminds me of the former all american fastpitch player who gives hitting lessons in this area. The swing she "teaches" in no way resembles the swing she used during games to set the school record in homers. In fact she used the so-called "compact" swing in the on-deck circle, but fortunately for her she used a circular hand path in the batter's box.
> > >
> > > Do you think the swing he uses on the clip to hit the pitching machine is the same swing he's talking about with Katie Couric? I don't. You can see the beautiful "long" arc of his swing, especially the one from the side with Couric in the foreground, and most especially when he "visualizes" himself jacking one in Yankee Stadium. That ball rockets to left center.
> > >
> > > I would be very interested to see if you can find a clip of AROD hitting the ball hard in a game with the swing he shows Katie Couric, as opposed to the one he uses against the machine when he's actually trying to crush it.
> > >
> > > Even great hitters aren't at all reliable in describing their own swing. Ted Williams himself wrote in his autobiography about his swing coming from "down low" because he wanted to get the ball up in the air. Clips show that his stance did have his hands very low, almost waist level, but as he cocked he pulled them up to his back shoulder. I never read or heard anything that says Ted studied his own swing and there really wasn't teh technoligy to do it back then anyway, so perhaps he didn't even realize that he wasn't "down low" when he pulled the trigger.
> >
> > With all do respect, I completely disagree with you. The long arc you are describing is kind of confusing me and I think you are looking at the bat instead of his arms. Try and pause the video at contact and look at where his arms are. Then go to a game swing of him and do the same... both his arms are bent and close to his body. Do you really think there is another way to hit a 95mph fastball other than by having a compact swing?
> >
> > Like I said with all do respect, I enjoy talking about hitting and trying to make young prospects better. But you thinking you know more about Arod's swing than he does and that he thinks he is doing one thing but is really doing something else is completely ridiculous.
> Hitters can't focus on everything. They focus on their weak points or areas they really need to focus on. Arod does about everything right as a hitter so he is going to tell you about the couple of things that are important to him not the other couple hundred other muscle movements that he is doing perfectly. Arod gives a partial description of his swing just as most other hitters do. Jaramillo who worked with him and countless other successful hitters has done a great job but these guys were already swinging great rotationally. They needed help with other issues such as timing, seeing the ball, pitch selection, staying square to the plate, rythm. Not rotation. You mention squaring up to the ball so I assume you are a Jaramillo proponent and Arod was a Jaramillo student. By the time they have gotten to Jaramillo they are already rotating or they wouldn't be in front of him in the first place or they would be pitchers. The point of this website is to develop a high quality swing and it is successful in that description. If you put Arod in a room for a week with pen and paper and asked him to write and take notes about every aspect of his swing I'm sure you would find it is not so simple. If it were simple everybody would be doing it.

A few points, and I also mean them with respect:

Anyone who tells AROD anything about his swing could be accused of "thinking he knows more about AROD's swing that AROD". Isn't that true?

I don't know AR and I don't know his father figure and AR has more ability in his little finger than I ever had, but if the situation ever arose, which it never will, I wouldn't hesitate to tell him what I told you....the swing he uses on the tee in that clip isn't the swing he uses in the batter's box, during games. I would then show him clips of himself in games and point out what I meant. He would either agree with me, or he wouldn't.

I do strongly believe that what a batter is doing off a tee and for that matter off a pitching machine doesn't necessarily correlate to what he/she does in the batter's box during a game, precisely because you AREN'T thinking about much when you're trying to hit a 95 mph fastball. The fact that AROD "swings" a certain way when he's flirting with Katie Couric doesn't predict what he does in the batter's box, facing live pitching. Don't you agree with that?

Do you not also agree that the best evidence of what AROD (or any other hitter) does in the batter's box would be video clips of AROD (or any other hitter) in the batter's box, during a game? If you have clips which can be played in slow motion, and which you think show him swinging the way he "demonstrated" for Couric, it would be genuinely helpful to the readers to post them so we can all study them.

And do you not also agree that as a world-class athlete, indeed one of the all-time great hitters, AROD could undoubtedly launch 50 line drives in a row off a batting tee, even if he WERE HOLDING THE BAT AT THE WRONG END? If so, what does the fact that he's hitting line drives with a particular coaching point prove about the relative worth of that coaching point?

Let's say a Martian scientist landed on the planet and decided he wanted to study the game of baseball, and the swing in particular. What do you think he'd do, to arrive at a scientific opinion as to the "best" swing? I think he'd (1) identify the people who did it better than anyone else down through time; (2) study clips of their swing, in games; and (3) search for common characteristics. Whether "compact" or "long" or whatever, wouldn't the swing that the great hitters of all time have used be the one to imitate?

Therein has lied the rub for almost 100 years.

In fact your disagreement with me about what we respectively see in the clip points to the biggest problem there ever was in hitting instruction.....even at 3/4 speed it is hard to agree on what, exactly, a good (or a bad) swing actually looks like. Still action photos are even worse than live action or full speed films.

By 'arc' I mean the circular motion of the bat that drives the ball, that every swing, whatever the "mechanics" uses to drive the ball. Do you agree that without that circular motion we have a "bunt"?

You think the swing needs to be "compact" to hit 95 mph pitching. That reminds me of Abe Lincoln, when he was asked how long a man's legs ought to be. He said "Long enough to reach the ground". I could show you a swing "compact" enough to consistently hit 65 mph fastpitch from 43 feet....the equivalent of about 100 mph. The swing is called a "slap" and though it can be very effective, it isn't going to hit any balls over the fence.

I believe that the swing AROD demonstrates for Couric, makes a point of initiating by bringing the hands forward, in the process of which the front elbow bends and "juts" out in front. I see that in the clip. Do you? That swing may be "compact" but the bat head isn't building up any speed at all until relatively late in the swing.

I believe that the swing he uses on the machine, especially the one from the side, shot from behind Couric, shows his more natural swing, in which the front arm remains RELATIVELY straight, which is to say: He doesn't intentionally bend it. His hands therefore come AROUND and forward, not FORWARD then around. If you could slow that clip down, I believe you'd see the bat head accelerating from the very beginning of rotation, much much earlier than in the swing he shows Couric. The 'longer' swing is the one he uses in games to more or less routinely knock the ball out of here, and I base my opinion on clips I've seen on this very site, among others.

The bat looks (and is) "close to his body" in the demonstration because he makes a point of pulling it close to his body as he moves his hands forward.

The bat looks (and is) "close to his body" in the more natural swing because as the front SHOULDER rotates the front arm is pulled around and remains tight.

You say "try to slow the clip down". Indeed. There are many clips on the internet showing AROD and zillions of other batters in the box, during games, in slow motion. Those are the clips to be studied. The biggest leap there's ever been in hitting instruction has been the ability to assemble those clips on the internet so they can be studied.

Unfortunately, the so-called "fundamentals" of hitting were developed fifty years ago or more, before the technology to really study the swing existed.

Best wishes.


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