I. Plate Coverage – Avoid positioning yourself too far/close to plate.
A. Standing forward or back in the batters box is a personal preference.
B. Use the “Back Foot” technique to assure complete plate coverage.
II. Stance – Create Athletic Posture with Body Square & Feet “In Line”
A. Weight should be concentrated to the inside of the balls of the feet.
B. Knees should be flexed and inside the feet.
C. There should be a slight bend in the waist to make the chin slightly out over the navel.
D. The head should remain in an upright position with both eyes focused on the pitcher.
E. The front shoulder should be down but not turned inwards.
F. Balance is very important and the hitter must remain athletic throughout the entire swing. Avoid having the eyes changing planes at anytime.
G. Rhythm and Relaxation are vital.
III. Grip – Middle Knuckle Alignment
A. Bat is positioned in the fingers and out of the palms.
B. The wrists are cupped and not flat.
C. Elbows should point down and remain relaxed. (Dorothy)
IV. Position of the Hands / Bat Angle
A. Lay the bat on the back shoulder and lift the hands to where the are
B. Avoid having the hands too far back or down.
C. The bat should be positioned at a 45 or a 90 degree angle.
D. Eliminate Flat Bat Disease.
V. The Load – Stride
A. Slow, Soft, Short, Straight.
B. Lead with the front foot heel and contact the ground with the inside of the big toe.
C. After the inside of the big toe of the front foot contacts the ground, balance is stabilized throughout the swing, as the whole foot will land on the ground.
D. Avoid lunging and the front toe negative chain reaction.
VI. The Load – Hands “Up the Hill”
A. Load the hands up and not back
B. Use the hands and control head and body movements.
C. Weight should slightly progress to the back leg to prepare for the weight transfer into the ball at contact.
D. Control the actions of the back elbow. Minimal space between the elbows at all times is desired. Harness a severe “Chicken Wing”
E. Look up to see the barrel of the bat over the head, look down to see the front elbow with some bend under the chin.
VII. The Swing “Down the Hill”
A. Drive the Knob of the Bat to the ground.
B. Use the Hands to get the bat to the ball before contact. No Body swings before contact.
C. Take an A to C approach and stay out of B – Point B is Bad.
D. The Back Knee will point to where the ball is Contacted.
E. Hit balls inside out in front of the plate. Hit balls down the middle on the front edge of the plate. Hit balls outside deep in the strike zone and to the opposite field.
F. Reduce Head movement and keep the eyes on the same plane when approaching the ball.
G. Stay compact with the swing path and when doing so, avoid casting the hands out away from the body resulting in hooking the ball. Take an inside approach to the ball by keeping the hands inside the ball.
H. Do not Over Rotate on the back foot because it promotes a tremendous amount of head movement, bad body swings, and a lack of balance.
A. Arms take a bend to extend approach.
B. Head and eyes look down the “V” of the arms.
C. Shoulders, back, and lower half remain in line until after contact.
D. Palm of back hand up at contact, palm of front hand down.
IX. Follow Through “Balance”
A. Do not stop the swing.
B. Finish over the shoulder not around the shoulder.
C. You may use one or two hands.
D. Secret Weapon
E. Remain on Balance and Ready to Run.
A. Avoid Jerky Body Movements
B. Swing at 99% not at 100% so not to create tension.
C. You are only as good as the pitches you swing at.
D. Do not lack confidence
E. Use a bat that is suitable for you.
F. Yes, Yes, Yes, or a Yes, Yes, No Approach.
G. Hit the Ball Up the Middle.
I. Addressing the Rubber
A. Right handed pitcher normally on third base side
B. Left handed pitcher normally on 1st base side
C. Exceptions to rule – pitchers who have a lot of arm side action may be better suited from opposite side of rubber
1. Relaxed with front spikes over the pitching rubber
2. Weight should be evenly distributed with feet shoulder width apart
3. Shoulders should remain square to strike zone
4. Hands together or ball in glove
5. Eyes focused on target
6. Back of glove facing target
II. Rocker Step
A. Short – this just begins the process
B. In line with 2nd base, don’t want 1st base side steps, stay in line
C. Stay more on toe to stay balanced
D. Weight should remain over mid-line of body – chin over belly button over rubber
A. Shoulders start to turn with pivot foot after short, slow rocker to allow for easy transition of weight and proper leg action
B. Foot is lifted slightly and placed in front of rubber
C. Foot should be placed in same position every time
D. Foot should be square to front of rubber – over rotation throws off initial alignment
E. Relax eyes from target – eyes weren’t meant to focus for long periods of time
IV. Leg Lift
A. Knee should be lifted to balance position
B. Knee should be at least waist high and parallel to rubber – want leg lift to be as high as possible without leaning back
C. When leg lift begins, pick the target back up
D. Leg and foot should be relaxed
E. Leg lift plays major role in balance
F. Don’t swing the leg or leave it open
V. Balance Point and Separation
A. Lead leg and hip should be closed to target and parallel to rubber
B. Proper position is created by lifting knee to balance
C. Stay tall at balance position – drop and drive tends to flatten out pitches
D. Think lead with the hip when going to the plate
E. The leg should go down first and then toward the plate
F. Be careful not to leg the lead leg swing open
G. Glove and hands should be between the thigh and knee at balance point
H. Glove back is facing target and slightly rounded
I. Separate hands with thumbs down over thigh and knee
J. Begin separation when knee begins to work down
K. Hands break in thumbs down position
L. Front shoulder remains level and is used as a sight looking down through target
M. Head position should remain steady with eyes focused on target
VI. Leg Action/Arm Swing
A. Stay tall on back side, this allows for a high to low delivery position
B. Front side leg starts down and out, then straightens as it rotates to a flexed landing position
C. Lead hip and front side shoulder start square to target
D. Angle of stride should be square to target to slightly closed, this is strongest position and allows for explosive firing of hips during the throwing phase
E. Front foot lands soft and towards the ball of foot
F. Arm action is initiated from thumbs down separation point. Fingers on top of baseball
G. Arm travels in a down to back to up type of arc
H. Don’t overextend or exaggerate by dropping ball straight out of glove, this can slow arm action. Causes tension and restricts arm speed
I. Ball should be pointing away from target in power position
J. Front foot is down when arm is in power position
VII. Follow Through
A. Front leg absorbs weight transfer
B. Front leg must land soft and slightly flexed to allow upper body to get out over front leg on release and follow through. This allows for maximum extension and makes for a smooth transition of weight and backside explosion off rubber.
C. DO NOT PUSH OFF RUBBER
D. Throwing arm finishes to outside of landing leg
E. Backside will follow out and off rubber if transfer is made correctly
F. This allows pitcher to finish in a good fielding position. Body square, glove in front, balanced.
A. Best pitch in game
B. Must throw it to develop a good one
C. Good mechanics allow you to locate within strike zone
D. Four seam – held across the horseshoe, usually straightest pitch
E. Two seam – can be held with or across the two seams, different finger placements can results in different movements
A. Feel pitch
B. Takes time to develop
C. Disrupts hitters timing
D. Three finger grip held across the horseshoe with fingertips over the laces
E. Circle held by making OK sign with hand and placing either across the horseshoe or the two seams