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Re: Batspeed


Posted by: Jack Mankin (MrBatspeed@aol.com) on Fri Jul 6 14:19:49 2001


Question/Comment:

>>> Jack,

To me, after reading your material, it seems that in order for a person to develop batspeed through torque and rotation, they would be very conscious that they are doing so. I feel that if torque and rotation were to be used, the batter would need to KNOWINGLY apply these forces... they are not natural movements.

Many of the games best hitters (i.e. Ken Griffey, Jr., Mark McGwire, Mike Piazza, Nomar Garciaparra, Barry Bonds, etc.) have stated how they develop batspeed, whether it is Weight Shift, Staying inside the ball, Attacking the ball, Cracking the whip, etc., and none of them have said that they use rotation and torque AT ALL!

So if I am correct in stating that a person must KNOW that they are applying torque and rotation to correctly and most effectively do so, does this mean that the games best hitters (who say that they develop batspeed through different ways) could be much better if they knew that they were applying torque and rotation and tried to apply more over a greater portion of the swing?

Or am I completely wrong in saying that more batspeed would be developed if a person knew what caused batspeed and thus more effectively used it(torque and rotation)?

Have the best hitters been using these forces while actually thinking that they were using other forces? If so, why are these forces being accidentally applied?

Please clarify this with me. Thank you... F. Giffrey <<<

Jack Mankin's reply:

Hi F. Giffrey:

You stated; "To me, after reading your material, it seems that in order for a person to develop batspeed through torque and rotation, they would be very conscious that they are doing so. I feel that if torque and rotation were to be used, the batter would need to KNOWINGLY apply these forces... they are not natural movements."

Your statement seems to imply that torque and rotational energy are just a couple of additional forces a batter can choose to apply to develop bat speed. That is not the case. All bat speed generated, whether from a great or weak hitter, will be derived from the amount of torque and rotational energy applied to the bat. Other than gravity, friction and other more minor factors, "torque" and the "transfer of rotational energy" (via a circular hand-path) are the ONLY forces acting on the bat that causes the bat-head to undergo angular displacement (develop bat speed).

I can tell you with absolute certainty that the reason great hitters develop greater bat speed are because their mechanics deliver a greater amount of torque and rotational energy over a greater portion of the swing than do the mechanics of an average hitter. But Mr. Giffrey, I would agree with you, I too, have never heard a single professional hitter say they use torque or rotational energy in their swing.

I would also seriously doubt that hitters like Barry Bonds or Gary Sheffield would say they are consciously pulling the bat-head back toward the catcher before they initiate their swing. They would probably discount the importance of applying top-hand-torque and say they are just bringing the hands back to the launch position. But I can assure you that if they stopped the bat-head at the launch position and initiated the swing by pushing the top-hand forward (instead of continuing to pull back), their production would (and has) immediately drop.
Would these great hitters be better off if they better understood the mechanics they are using? I would say the answer is a definite yes. First of all, there are few batting coaches who can help them when they're in a slump. Very, very few coaches truly understand the mechanics of a great hitter's swing. They will probably tell the hitter he needs to go back to the basics - which usually means some form of linear mechanics.

Well, I'm not sure this answers your question, but these are some of my thoughts.

Jack Mankin


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