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Rick Johnston

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Rick Johnston | Sep 23, 2017 9:19:33 AM

First Baseman and Third Baseman - Rules for Cut Offs in the Infield

Don't just be a body out there.....

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Topics: team Defence

Rick Johnston | Jun 13, 2017 3:27:34 PM

Fly Ball in the Sun - Yikes!!!

How many times have you been at practice working with your outfielders on tracking fly balls only to have one of them asking the coach to change position because “the sun is in my eyes”? Unfortunately, the game of baseball, if we're lucky, is played in the sun. Believe me, one of the best times for any outfielder to work on tracking fly balls is on bright sunny days, with the sun in their eyes and lots of wind. To work on sun balls, use the sun as a mechanism for a drill. Additionally, on windy days, vary the position in the outfield so that outfielders can work on tracking with the wind at their backs, in front and from side to side with the cross wind. Too often, days with bright sun, high sky and wind are not used to the advantage of working on tracking balls in the air. Coaches, when you have these days, use them to assist the outfielders in turning tough catches into routine catches.

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Topics: baseball, baseball drills, Outfielding, Outfielding drills

Rick Johnston | May 20, 2017 6:53:12 PM

Get Sweaty to Get Ready - If You Want to be a Better Hitter

HEY HITTERS!!! As we've discussed in previous posts, "Show & Go" with no warm up simply does not work. It is a recipe for disaster and injury. The key to an effective warm up is simply this:

"Get Sweaty to Get Ready"

How do we do this? It is actually easier than you would think. Implement a system of exercises to WAKE UP the body and get it ready for action. If you don’t WAKE IT UP, then don’t expect it to be ready for the toughest task in all of sports...hitting a baseball. A sweaty body is a heated body with muscles able to fire. Cold bodies can’t fire with any type of explosiveness. A cold car in minus temperatures when started, barely turns over and sputters. If you immediately drive away, it will sputter until the engine warms up, then presto, it runs like it should... smooth and fluid, just like a hitter's swing should be... smooth and fluid, with no choppiness, sputters or hesitations.

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Topics: warming up, hitting instruction, baseball exercise, baseball pregame, baseball injury, baseball fundamentals, injury prevention, baseball warm up

Rick Johnston | May 8, 2017 12:36:08 PM

Aggression at The Plate for Ontario High School Baseballers

With the Toronto high school baseball season upon us, are you ready with your hitting approach?  

If you’re new to high school ball, you probably need to improve your hitting strategy. Even if you are a high school senior, you might need to work on improving your hitting strategy. Professional and University-level baseball scouts will often attend Toronto-area games. If you want to have a future in baseball, you’ll have to show them that you can swing the bat like a pro or college hitter, not a little-leaguer. With these simple tips, you can be an aggressive hitter just like your Major League favourites.

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Topics: hitting, baseball, high school baseball, baseball toronto

Rick Johnston | Dec 18, 2016 6:34:15 PM

Hey players... is strength the MISSING LINK in your game?

For whatever the reasons, baseball players have generally taken strength training, or simply getting stronger, for granted. Not sure why? It certainly seems, however, that every one of those players is immensely concerned with the mechanics of their swing, or their pitching delivery, or being quicker down the line, or getting jumps on fly balls… Isn’t that an interesting irony? They all want to throw harder, hit for more power and be more explosive, yet, often they seem relatively unconcerned with getting stronger and well organized with their body. Not sure if this really makes sense? Every baseball player, regardless of age, if they truly would like to make baseball a full-time activity, should include some sort of basic to advanced strength program into their daily regimen.

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Topics: strength training, strength training for baseball, baseball, speed, baseball off-season, injury prevention, Sports, sports performance, power

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