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.
Little Leaguers Wait. Professionals Swing.
In the little leagues, your coach probably told you to wait for the perfect pitch or take a strike. Not sure why, but I assume it was to run the pitching count up. At the time, it was an effective strategy. Young pitchers make a lot of mistakes and you were practically guaranteed a walk. The pitchers in the Toronto high school leagues for the most part will throw harder, a lot more accurately, and a lot more controlled than the pitchers you’re used to. The simple reason for this is the fact that the high school season is so short and not played with back to back games, permitting the best pitcher on each team to throw more often.
To succeed in high school baseball, you need to think like a professional, act like a professional and carry yourself like a professional. Pro players step up to the plate planning to take three good swings at three good pitches. They don’t wait for perfection. Pro players walk up to the plate with confidence, not arrogance. A pro player walks to the plate wanting nothing more than to get after it. A pro player doesn't let the pitcher determine the outcome, it is the pro player that will determine the outcome. A good hitter sees every pitch as an opportunity. Step up to the plate planning to swing and hit. Remember the golden rule... pitchers are trying to throw one of the first two pitches for strikes and two of the first three pitches for strikes. So what is the moral? Look to swing, not look to take!
Drive it Up the Middle and the Other Way
Don’t spend a lot of time thinking about where you’re going to hit the ball. Over-thinking slows your reflexes and weakens your swing. Try to hit every pitch right up the middle or the other way. This helps you stay on the ball longer both visually and mechanically, as well as keeping the swing arc much shorter to the ball. Always try to make hard contact especially when you are in a plus one or plus two count. With two strikes, the hard contact can still be made, as long as you are up there thinking offensively in a defensive count. If you go into the box attacking, you’ve already won the mental game.
Attack with Fouls.
Learn to foul off bad pitches, especially when you already have two strikes. If you let the pitcher throw balls, you’ll walk and he’ll get off easy. If you foul, he has to throw more pitches. Keep the pressure on him to throw strikes, and he’ll wear out quickly. Remember, professional players aim to make hard contact. Don’t let a pitcher get away with a walk.
You’ve reached the Toronto baseball high school leagues, so play like a pro. Hit aggressively, make hard contact, and take your baseball game to the next level.
featured photo by Flic Pics