There are hundreds of small techniques that a hitter can use to their advantage. Some techniques are more important than others but all of them have a purpose. It's rare for someone to know all the proper techniques with regard to hitting, but as long as you know what you're trying to accomplish, you can determine what’s needed to properly execute the skill. In this instance I will be discussing how to prevent pulling off the ball and why that’s important to avoid. A technique necessary for every hitter is to be able to put themselves in a position where they can keep their head and body on the ball as long as possible. Here's how you can make that happen.
There are only a select few people who know why David Price came into pitch in Game 4 of the ALDS for the Toronto Blue Jays against the Texas Rangers. Everyone has their own theory on why it happened, although most likely no one outside of that select circle will ever know for sure.
Now, it all worked out for the Blue Jays. They won Game 4. Then they won Game 5 in an epic battle. But the Game 4 moves remain an interesting debate and story that has kept me thinking. After trying to figure out all the different scenarios that made that decision make sense, I've come to the conclusion that John Gibbons didn't want to publicly choose Marcus Stroman over Price without having an acceptable reason to.
I'm sure a golf expert would give me a lot of reasons why I'm a bad golfer. But there's one reason in particular that's also a reason why baseball players struggle. The reason I'm so bad at golf is because I look to see where I hit the ball before I actually hit it. As a result of trying to look where the ball goes, I pull my head off the ball causing me to mis-hit it. This concept is the same concept that affects young hitters, but it goes way past just pulling off the ball; it's a mental adjustment that needs to be made rather than a physical adjustment.
Baseball may be known as a team sport but it’s not a sport that needs to be practiced with a team. The best way to enhance your skills is to practice by yourself. Team practice is for understanding things like cut offs, bunt defense, pick off plays and other team activities. Practicing these different plays will help your team get better but will not necessarily make you a more skilled baseball player. To get better as a player it’s important to practice on your own. Here are some ways you can practice on your own or with one other person.
Hitting (Hitting off a Tee)
Everyone’s favorite part of practice is batting practice, where they get to see how hard and far they can hit a baseball. The problem with batting practice is how kids handle it. A lot of kids see batting practice as a homerun derby with the ball perfectly placed each time (or waiting for a perfectly placed one) and swinging for the fences. When you hit off a Tee, your goals can be made more appropriate for trying to become a better hitter and can be made more realistic to game situations when done correctly. The goal of hitting the ball off the tee is to try and square up the ball as much as possible because almost all results will be the same anyways. Hitting off a tee allows you to forget about your surroundings and concentrating on increasing your strength and using proper technique. Placing the Tee in different locations that represent where an actual ball may be pitched to you - raise and lower the Tee, place it closer to you and further away - can help you learn what adjustments your body will need to make to square up on a ball based on the pitch location.