The Baseball Zone Blog

Rick Johnston | Oct 20, 2014 5:50:36 PM

Are You Watching the Game Within Each Baseball Game?

Now that the MLB 2014 playoffs are well underway, it is time for every player, coach or parent to start watching the game within a baseball game. Just what does this statement actually mean? In basic terms it means stop watching the pitcher throw the pitch or the hitter swinging the bat or the catcher receiving the ball, but instead start watching what is really happening. In other words, stop watching for the outcome, but watch and observe things like how a pitcher stands on the mound before he begins his delivery; or how hitter sets up and initiates his rhythm in the batter’s box; or how a catcher delivers his signs and the way he shifts from his sign position to his receiving position.

It is our nature as humans to be much more in tune to outcome when watching a sports spectacle on television. If more time is spent of looking for things that lead to the outcome, one will become much better versed into the true nuances of what is really taking place.

So, here we have it, the best time of the baseball season...the MLB playoffs, with teams striving to be World Champions. We all sit intently in front of our big screen televisions and begin to watch. But what are we really watching? For most, it is for the outcome. That is fine for some, but for those that are aspiring to become better players, coaches or parents of players, it is your job to watch the game within the game and of course the outcome will follow.

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Topics: baseball parents, baseball coaching, watching on tv

Kevin Hussey | Oct 16, 2014 3:13:22 PM

How to Make a Recruiting Video for College Baseball Coaches

If you’re looking to play college baseball and you plan on emailing coaches, it will always help to send a video of yourself to the coach. NCAA, NJCAA and NAIA coaches are always looking for new players and sending a video of yourself can be very beneficial for them. It’s important to have a video with useful footage so college coaches have an idea of your skill level.

Pitcher's video

A pitcher's video should provide coaches with footage of you throwing from the windup and stretch. When creating the video you should shoot about 5-6 pitches from both sides of the mound (back side & front side) as well as the back and front (behind you and behind the catcher/target). You should throw all your pitches at least 3-4 times. This will give the coach an idea of what your strengths are and what you need to improve on. When shooting from the front and behind, try to have the result of the pitch in focus so the coach can see your accuracy. It’s not necessary to have a radar gun in the video but telling the coach how hard you throw would help. The coach will have an idea from your video what your velocity may be. The length of the video should be no longer than 3-4 minutes.

Catcher’s video

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Topics: recruiting, college, ncaa, college baseball, college baseball recruiting, college baseball scholarship, college recruiting strategy, naia, junior college, juco, recruiting video, college baseball coaches

Rick Johnston | Oct 10, 2014 6:00:00 AM

The BIG 5 Areas That High School Infielders Must Work On

The headline may seem simple enough. At the same time it may appear as these are the only areas of defense one should focus on. Well, I really wish it was this simple. Unfortunately playing the infield is more than just five areas,. However, the five areas that I will talk about are really the five main problem areas that the average High School infielder can get away with today, but will cost them dearly at the College level. 

Infielders that make the following five areas an absolute priority in their overall development will find the transition to the next level of defense that much easier.

  1. Playing too deep...

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Topics: infielding, infielding tips, infielding errors, infield play, college baseball, high school baseball, short hops, ground ball pursuit, fielding hops, bad hops

Kevin Hussey | Oct 9, 2014 6:00:00 AM

3 Essential Skills You Need To Play (and Stay In) College Baseball

I bet you were thinking I was going to list skills like throwing hard, running fast and hitting for power, right? Great skills to have. Even having one of them will open many doors for you. But I am talking about non-technical skills that will not only help get you to a college campus, but help keep you there for as long as you can be.

College baseball is a very realistic goal for many high school players. There are thousands of high school students with the talent to play college baseball but not all of them possess the mentality it takes to have success at the next level. Physical ability may allow you to get into college but your physical and mental toughness will be what keeps you there.

Here are 3 essential non-technical skills you will need to excel at to become, and more importantly REMAIN, a collegiate baseball player.

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Topics: college, college baseball, handling adversity, mental toughness, physical toughness

Kevin Hussey | Oct 4, 2014 6:30:00 AM

Quality, Scholly #'s & Travel - Info For College Baseball Prospects

College baseball prospects looking to play college baseball have a long list of options they can choose from in regards to which school best suits them. There are over 1600 schools in the US that offer a baseball program. The different types of schools include NCAA D1, D2, D3, NJCAA (Junior College) DI, D2, D3, and NAIA D1, D2. All of these schools except for the NCAA DIII and NJCAA DIII can offer you athletic scholarships. Although DIII schools cannot offer athletic scholarships, they can still give you academic money to help with tuition costs. All athletes who are not on scholarship are considered walk-ons. A walk-on is an athlete who is on the roster but will not receive any athletic money from the school. There are two types of walk on athletes - preferred walk-ons and regular walk-ons. A preferred walk on is an athlete that is recruited by the schools coach but there is no scholarship money available. Regular walk-ons are students at the school that will have the opportunity to try out for the team during walk-on tryouts.

When beginning to navigate the options of playing college baseball, there are a number of things to consider that don't necessarily hold true from one level to another. Here is a quick synopsis of a few of those things at the NCAA DI, DII and NAIA levels.

Division I

There are just under 300 division I baseball programs in the United States.

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Topics: scholarship, ncaa, college baseball, college baseball recruiting, college baseball scholarship, naia, mlb, aaa

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