[ About ]
[ Batspeed Research ]
[ Swing Mechanics ]
[ Truisms and Fallacies ]
[ Discussion Board ]
[ Video ]
[ Other Resources ]
[ Contact Us ]
Consider this Logic

Posted by: BHL (Knight1285@aol.com) on Thu Apr 27 00:18:34 2006

> > > > when i hit even batting practice pitching i get great loft and power to center field. however when it comes to pulling a pitch i cannot get the ball in the air what soever. just ground balls or balls just spinning way foul. ultimatley its like i dont get any extension or something and i just cant drive it with loft. what do i do or what drills do i work on?
> > >
> > >
> > > Try moving closer to the plate and or opening your stance while moving your back foot closer to the plate.
> >
> > Hi All,
> >
> > If a person crowds the plate, and learns how to deal with the inside pitch, as sbl posited in Mar. 2004, the outside pitch will seem like one thrown down the middle of the plate. This, as a result, allows one to pull all pitches.
> >
> > The ultimate goal at every at bat is a homerun, and my pull method is a means to that end.
> >
> > In the future, I will provide a methodical study that proves why this method will eventuatually eliminate "small ball."
> >
> > Best Wishes,
> > BHL
> > Knight1285@aol.com
> >
> > P.S. Bonds is a PFO--even when he is not slugging, pitchers pitch around him.
> You can't pull every pitch. All great PFO hitters hit from centerfield over. This approach to hitting is nothing new: Ted Williams, Frank Robinson, etc. Small ball has survived for the last 50 years despite their success.
> -Steve

Hi Steve,

Small ball, when carefully consider, does not permit one to accumulate Hall-of-Fame numbers. From the perspective of statistics, small ball usually requires speed to beat out infield hits. It also requires precision bat control, which makes hitting even tougher in view of Ted Williams' opinion on the matter: "Hitting a round ball with a round bat is the toughest thing to do in sports." Even when these small-ball tacticians try to "hit them where they ain't," these punch-and-judy hitters will be heavily scouted, so that most of their ground balls will be outs. Ted Williams was once quoted as saying that he made outs on the ground than in the air. Seen in this light, reaching 3,000 hits and a .300 AVG usually requires 1) remaining in order to accumulate the 600 AB necessary to accomplishe the task; 2) exemplary defense, so that the batter will not be taken out for a defensive substitute in the late innings; 3) speed to ensure that ground balls will result as hits, not outs.

On the other hand, power hitting does not necessitate longevity. Ralph Kiner, for instance, became immortalized for what most would consider, for all intents and purposes, a very abbreviated career. Mel Ott pulled most of his 511 home runs, and did so because he realized that the power field permits the batter to hit the shortest distance with the greatest amount of authority. Additionally, Mel Ott stood 5'9," and weighed approximately 171 lbs. Coaches often are of the mindset that pulled home runs (fly balls) are mistakes; if that is the case, it is time to making more of them. Although some contend that buffering one's statistics with RBI's is selfish, I can argue that most dynasties were carried by men like Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, or Duke Snider. Even when the modern Yankees were dominate, all of their staters had 20+ home runs.

Personally, I see table-setting as a waste; according the theory of the small ball, it will take at least two more to drive him in going "station-to-station." Even if these "rabbits" do steal second, the outfield will play very shallow, and he is unlikely to beat throws. I will entertain the possibility that this runner could steal third safely, but then it will require a well-placed hit to bring him in.

Home run hitters, in my opinion, do not suffer this lethargy, since they take initiative, rather than hand the responsibility to someone else. Learning how to become an effective home run hitter will also make every one of a hitter's at AB's count. Personally, I would rather a batter slug 30 home runs in 420 AB's (a home run per every 14 AB, and every one of them at least an RBI), rather than a hitter with a .370 BA that slugs 1 home run. Moreover, if there is a runner on third, a failed HR, with less than two outs, counts as a SF.

One of the unique aspects of sluggers is the psychological mind games they can play with defenses. For instance, men like Kingman bunted when defenses played them deep--when defenses go to extremes, sometimes even slow runners can beat these throws out. They can also experiment with Baltimore chops, butcher boys, and bunt-swings.

Most of the time, though, they will be in a position to drive in runs, even drive in themselves. Since line drives and fly balls have a higher success rate than ground balls, why play an inferior style of baseball? The home run hitter has these advantage: 1)he does not need many at bats to accomplish his task; 2) if this is so, he does not have to remain injury-free all season; 3)no one has to possess speed after hitting a home run; they can take their time. In the words of the great Reggie Jackson, my hero, "art was meant to be admired."

If you decide small ball possesses some utility, I would agree. But why not focus on the power game, and then finesse defenses to death when they employ shifts? Or call a base hit when a home run was intended a "fortunate accident."



Post a followup:

Anti-Spambot Question:
This slugger ended his MLB career with 714 homeruns?
   Tony Gwynn
   Babe Ruth
   Sammy Sosa
   Roger Clemens

[   SiteMap   ]