Sunday, October 22nd, 2017

The Bunting Tee Drill

September 25, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Video Posts

The batting tee is probably the most versatile tool for baseball players.  It can be used for drill work in almost every area of the game.  Today’s video tip shows how you can use a tee to practice two specific types of bunts. Written post for push bunting: http://www.baseballbytheyard.com/the-underrated-push-bunt/ Base hitt bunting footwork for left-handers: […]

The underrated push bunt

July 31, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

In my opinion, one of the most underrated plays in baseball is the push bunt from right handed hitters.  Someday I’ll make a video demonstrating how to do it properly but today we’ll just get into the benefits and the purposes of it. First, the benefits. It confuses the 1st baseman and the pitcher.  The […]

The importance of being aggressive early at the plate

July 17, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Mental Side

As all of my readers know, baseball is a very cerebral game.  The difference between winning and losing & succeeding and failing at the game often is more about what is going on between the ears and not in the physical things you can see.  No area of the game is immune to this either. […]

How to improve your pitching machine

June 26, 2017 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting

I’m not a gigantic fan of pitching machines mainly because they are so unrealistic to how a ball is going to be pitched to a batter.  Here is a picture that shows the obvious problem.   No pitch will ever shoot out of a pitcher’s belly button.  The ball will usually be released above and […]

Knob to the ball v Hands inside the ball – What’s the difference?

June 8, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

I’ve said numerous times on my site that one size never fits all when it comes to teaching baseball.  Everyone plays and learns differently and therefore requires unique methods of instruction.  This is true right down to the phrases that players and coaches use. Two popular phrases in hitting are “keep your hands inside the […]

Slumps and the common cold

June 2, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

Sooner or later, everyone will catch a cold just like every batter will find himself in a rut or a slump.  The two are very similar because no matter what you do, you are going to have both for a few days.  Neither one has a cure and both are a nuisance. Although a common […]

The good and bad of golf during baseball season

May 16, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

There have been several times where I have watched a batter for the first time during a hitting lesson and asked the player, “How long have you played golf?”  The response has always started with a look that said “How did you know I played golf?” and then finished with an actual answer like “a […]

Accelerate the barrel through the zone

May 11, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

One of the hundreds of baseball sayings my dad passed on to me growing up was, “The ball will not jump off the bat by itself.  You have to make it jump off your bat.”  I find myself saying that to many of the hitters I work with these days. Younger kids who are learning […]

Strikeouts are killing baseball

May 9, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

When I was in the Twins organization, I had a teammate who was a power hitter who struck out a lot.  Another teammate was kidding him about his strikeout totals and the power hitter said the following: “An out is an out.  It doesn’t matter if it’s a ground ball, a pop-up, or a strike […]

10 reasons to front-toss

April 26, 2017 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting

There are several ways to practice hitting.  Live BP and hitting off a tee are popular ones.  All have value but in my opinion and all things considered, front-toss is king.  Here are ten reasons why in no particular order. Safety disclaimer: Whenever you front-toss, please use caution and make sure the screen in front […]

Beating a slow pitcher with your feet

April 24, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

Ask any Major Leaguer who they would rather face – a hard throwing guy bringing it 93mph or a soft throwing guy who throws anywhere from 75-86 mph – and I bet well over 85% of them will say “bring on the hard thrower!“ To counter slow pitching, many coaches suggest/demand that their batters move […]

Snap your swings like a boxer

April 20, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Video Posts

Today’s video tip involves a phrase I have been using with my son recently in order to increase his bat speed.  The phrase is “snap your swings.”  As you will see, it is related to the sport of boxing.

What are your hitting cues?

April 18, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

Every hitter has a unique set of strengths and weaknesses.  Some are great at pulling the ball but not so great at staying back and going the other way.  Others are just the opposite.  The important thing is to know what they are.  If you do then you can better address them in practice and […]

Just “tie your shoes”

March 17, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Mental Side

This is the last post in a series of recent posts on the importance of creating a routine as a hitter.  The previous posts on the subject are linked here: What is your hitting routine? What are YOUR players doing on deck? A hitter’s routine and muscle memory Why do players choke? Today’s post gives […]

Why do players choke?

March 15, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Mental Side

Today’s post is in a series of posts dedicated to hitters who can benefit from a routine prior to their at-bats.  The prior three posts related to this topic are linked below.  The final one in the series will be Friday. What is your hitting routine? What are YOUR hitters doing on deck? A hitter’s […]

A hitter’s routine and Muscle Memory

March 13, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Mental Side

Two of last week’s posts centered around the importance of hitters developing a personalized routine to prepare for at-bats.  If you did not get a chance to see them, you can click on their titles below. What is your hitting routine? What are YOUR players doing on deck? Today’s post sets us up for the […]

What are YOUR players doing on deck?

March 8, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

The photo to the right was forwarded to me by a good friend who said it was making the rounds on social media.  As you can see, a total of four hitters are currently in their hitting routine.  To see this many hitters involved leads me to think that Clemson demands this of their hitters […]

What is your hitting routine?

March 6, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

Take a pitch. Step out. Adjust the left batting glove. Adjust the right batting glove. Tap the right foot with the bat. Tap the left foot with the bat. Step into the box and dig in with the right foot. Step in and dig in with the left. One slow deep breathe. Ready to hit. […]

A tip to keep the catcher back on sac bunts

March 1, 2017 by  
Filed under Base Running, Hitting, Video Posts

Today’s video tip is a higher level one for base runners. It involves a situation where the batter poorly bunts a pitch just in front of home plate.

How to read a hitter’s swing

February 15, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Video Posts

To play infield at the higher levels requires physical talent but also a lot of awareness.  Look around you and you’ll begin to notice a lot of information that you can use to become a better infielder even before the ball is hit.   Today’s video post involves analyzing a batter’s swing before he even […]

What does it mean when a hitter “leaks”?

February 6, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting, Video Posts

Today’s post was inspired by a reader who emailed me about his son who is apparently “leaking.”  The reader wasn’t sure what the term meant.  The term is also something I have dealt with recently now that I have started to do some private hitting lessons. Note: if you live near Limerick, PA and have a need […]

The two most important priorities of hitting – Part 2

February 1, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

In Part 1, I showed and discussed what I feel is hitting Priority/Procedure #1 (Get your body to maximum athleticism when your stride foot lands).  If you have not yet looked at that post, please do because I also gave some insight into the difference between procedure and technique. Today’s post is (mechanical) Priority #2 […]

The two most important priorities of hitting – Part 1

January 30, 2017 by  
Filed under Hitting

There are two (mechanical) priorities or procedures that I focus on the most when I teach hitting.  Do these two things and most everything else falls into place.  Fail to do them and it won’t matter how much you learn about all the other stuff. Today’s post is about the first procedure – the body position […]

Coach hitters like an economist

January 20, 2017 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting

It has been said that the enemy of the dictator is the economist.  The dictator wants to make all the rules.  They also want everyone to like the rules and to not criticize them. “I make the rules, they will work, and everyone will like them!”   Often it’s the economist who is the only […]

Hitting Drills: Multivitamins vs Prescriptions

October 11, 2016 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting

When it comes to baseball drills, it’s important to know the difference between multi-vitamins and prescription medications. Multi-vitamins are for general maintenance and prescription medications are for specific ailments. Baseball drills work the same way. Hitting drills like tee work, soft-toss, and short toss fall into the category of hitting multi-vitamins. They are for general […]

Should a batter keep his back elbow up?

September 22, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting, Video Posts

Today’s video is about the controversy over the back elbow of hitters.  It’s a longer video because there are multiple layers to this debate.  As you will see, I don’t believe the problem is with the elbow itself. Feel free to give me your thoughts in the comment section.

Donaldson and Trout talk hitting

September 6, 2016 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting

Watch both of these videos.  It’s the closest you will get to pornography for hitting coaches. The first is Josh Donaldson and the second is Mike Trout.  If you don’t have a lot of time at the moment, go to the 5:25 point of the Josh Donaldson one and watch the rest later. Now it’s […]

Aggressive through the ball

Some phrases in baseball cover many different aspects of the game.  “Aggressive through the ball” is one of them.  Today’s video explains several ways it applies to baseball players.

How to keep a hitter’s front side from flying open

June 27, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting, Video Posts

One of the biggest mistakes hitters make at all levels is opening the front side up too soon on the swing.  Here are several phrases, all of which describe basically the same thing: “stepping in the bucket” “flying off the ball” “pulling your hip out” “pulling your head off the ball” “rotating away from the […]

Go back before you go forward

June 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting, Infield, Video Posts

There are a ton of great sayings in baseball.  Some are specific to one area of the game and some transfer to many/all areas of the baseball.  Today’s video explains one that benefits virtually every area of the game.

Blow on the ball to break a slump

Slumps happen in all areas of the game.  Pitchers, fielders, and certainly hitters go through times where things just aren’t right.  It can be frustrating because, mechanically speaking, everything appears normal.  Slumps can definitely be mechanical but often it’s not.  Sometimes it just comes down to breathing. Today’s video tip explains how this can happen and […]

Good hitters get into good counts

April 5, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting

Ever notice that the best hitters always seem to be hitting in 1-0, 2-1, and 2-0 counts?  Obviously, that’s not always the case but there is a lot of truth to the saying that “good hitters get into good counts” more often than poor hitters. Good hitters are called “good hitters” in part because of […]

Getting hitters off their back foot (part 2)

March 11, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting

Back in February I posted a video about how to get batters off their back foot.  If you have not seen that video, click HERE.  After posting the video, a viewer posted a comment asking if tire chocks could be used.  I have to admit that I didn’t know what “tire chocks” were so I […]

Getting hitters off their back foot

February 11, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting, Video Posts

Today’s video tip is actually two versions of a drill that could be used to help hitters address a common mistake.  I see this more often in little kids but it doesn’t mean older players can’t benefit from it either.  The mistake involves never getting their weight off their back foot when they swing “Rotational” […]

Infield positioning on the pitch

January 28, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting, Infield

As I’ve said about 300 times on this site … “As you get older, the game gets faster.”   If you are an infielder and you position yourself in one spot for right handed hitters and one spot for left handed hitters, the game is going to pass you by.  I showed this picture from the […]

Reversing the shoulders

January 25, 2016 by  
Filed under Hitting, Pitching

FYI: Important email coming today for subscribers!  If not a subscriber, use the Subscribe box on the right column seen on every page. There are certain movements in the game that are transferable.  By that I mean similar body movements are done by all baseball players.  If you want to quicken the pace of a […]

Are you tipping off your pitches?

December 16, 2015 by  
Filed under Hitting, Pitching, Video Posts

I saw the following photo on ESPN.com the other day and thought I would use it as a reminder of something I have talked about in the past.  Here is the photo. Ask experienced hitters at the major league level and I guarantee that they will say that every pitcher tips off their pitches in some […]

Quadrant Hitting – Part 2

November 16, 2015 by  
Filed under Hitting

When you are formulating a game plan for your at-bat … Do you pick the quadrant you are best at hitting or do you pick the quadrant where you think the pitcher will throw it?  That’s the question I ended Part 1 with.  If you need to read Part 1 to get an idea of what […]

Quadrant hitting – Part 1

November 13, 2015 by  
Filed under Hitting

Say what you want about Alex Rodriguez’s personal decisions over his career but you have to give him credit for his knowledge of hitting.  I don’t know about you but I loved listening to him as one of the playoff announcers. There were many great insights he made but one stood out because it reminded me […]

Would your best player do this?

November 11, 2015 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting, Make Up

Have you taken the Winter Seminar Survey yet?  It’s only two questions.  Click HERE.  I’d love to get your input! Now back to today’s post! Take a look at this screenshot of a situation from Game 4 of this year’s World Series.  Lorenzo Cain at bat.  Pause here and look at everything.   Got the […]

Don’t let a slow pitcher slow your bat down

July 14, 2015 by  
Filed under Hitting

One of things I’ve seen a lot of with young hitters is that when they face a slow pitcher, their bats slow down along with it.  This, of course, is a big mistake. Like many hitters, I always hated hitting off slow pitchers.  Bring that 92 mph any day of the week. That soft lefty […]

A quiz and a book for the ages

April 9, 2015 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting, Infield, Pitching

I have always been fond of reading George Will’s political columns.  He also happens to be an avid baseball fan.  Some were even hoping he would be the new baseball commissioner after Bud Selig stepped down.  His latest column to bring in the new MLB season was a trivia quiz.  To take the quiz, click […]

The common sense of George Brett

April 3, 2015 by  
Filed under Hitting

When I was a senior in college at Villanova, our spring break took us to the Orlando, FL area for workouts and games.  One of the places we played at several times was the old Boardwalk and Baseball complex which, at the time, was the home of the Kansas City Royals for spring training.  Our […]

The SeamTrak app

March 23, 2015 by  
Filed under Hitting

My friend Xan Barksdale over at Catching-101.com has come up with quite a nifty web app for hitters.  It’s called SeamTrak and it enables hitters to practice seeing the spin of the ball right out of a pitcher’s hand. Obviously, recognizing the pitch quickly is one of the best skills a batter can have.  But […]

How batters tip off that they are bunting

Today’s video tip shows two ways that batters will often unintentionally let you know that they are about to either sacrifice or base-hit bunt.  The tips are for primarily 1st and 3rd basemen since they are the ones who will be charging but it is also for anyone else (coaches, catchers, pitchers, etc.) on the […]

How to make a batting tee (Part 2)

March 2, 2015 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting

When it comes to total number of views, the most popular post on this website is the one I wrote back on January 29, 2014.  It was called How to make a batting tee.   If you have the money, my pick for the best basic batting tee is the Tanner Tee.  It is the […]

Swing down to the ball

February 27, 2015 by  
Filed under Hitting

Over the past several years of running this website, I have received a lot of very positive comments about my posts and videos.  In fact, just about all of them have been positive and I’m truly grateful for those who pass along their “thank you’s” and “well done’s.”  Some comments have not been so pleasant. […]

You’ve got to be kidding me (Part 4)

November 24, 2014 by  
Filed under Hitting

Well folks, I’m sorry to say I’ve had another “You’ve got to be kidding me!” baseball moment.  A good friend told me about this one and I didn’t fully believe it until I saw it for my own eyes.  Here it is …   Moms and Dads out there … please save your money.  Spending this […]

How to better see the ball out of the pitcher’s hand

November 11, 2014 by  
Filed under Hitting

Happy Veterans’ Day to all those who have worn the uniform!  Thank you for your service! Last week I received a question from a high school player.  His dilemma was a common one.  He felt he was not seeing the ball well out of the pitcher’s hand and wasn’t sure what could be done.  He […]

The science of “looking” at the ball

October 27, 2014 by  
Filed under Coaching, Hitting

When I work with younger kids I often say “there is a big difference between ‘seeing’ the ball and ‘looking’ at the ball when hitting.” You can “see” the ball out of the corner of your eye but “looking” at the ball means turning your head until your whole face is directed at the ball. […]

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