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Thread: My daughter has struck out 6 times in the last 7 at bats....

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    I can talk softball all day julray's Avatar
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    Default My daughter has struck out 6 times in the last 7 at bats....

    Major slump to begin the season. She's never been in one like this before, generally is a very good hitter with lots of pop. Up here north of the border our girls (12u) play with 11inch balls and 35 feet distance from the pitching rubber to home plate. She is currently playing 14u, the pitching is now 38 feet from home plate and our picthers are using 12 inch balls. My daughter is way out front on most pitches, and either under or over the ball when her timing is right. And then the pitcher throws her change up and it's lights out. So for the most part, I think her issue is the distance has changed and pitchers are adjusting which means slower pitching.

    I feel like she swings for the fences on every pitch, which I know can be a major part of the problem as well. It's not necessary because she has tons of bat speed when swinging at 80% capacity. But I'm not sure it would be a good move to tell her to settle down and not swing so hard... she's not off balance when swinging hard and she keeps her head on the ball. I think because she has been striking out so much it might be a mental thing now. Soft toss, hitting off the tee etc she is hitting the ball just fine.

    Sorry, I don't have a video to post. Any general advice would help, she's quite frustrated right now. I keep assuring her that she will turn it around once she adjusts.

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    It wasn't me. rdbass's Avatar
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    She is currently playing 14u, the pitching is now 38 feet from home plate
    Is that correct? Not 43' or 40'. I'm betting it's mechanic/sequence issues but, with out video I'll be of no help.
    I don't know sh!t from shinola!

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    I can talk softball all day julray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdbass View Post
    Is that correct? Not 43' or 40'. I'm betting it's mechanic/sequence issues but, with out video I'll be of no help.
    Yep 14u is 38 feet in Canada. I know, it's insane. We played a tournament (12u) in Buffalo last year and the girls had to adjust from 35 feet/11 inch ball to 40 feet/12 inch ball. I will get a video. Any thoughts on the mental approach, any thing I can do to get her confidence back up.

    Cheers

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    Allergic to BS Strike2's Avatar
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    My vision of "swinging for the fences" often causes timing and mechanical problems. There's very fine line between the well hit ball, and not, and it's easily possible to swing too hard. With my kid, it happens when she tries to speed up her swing to get that "extra pop". It becomes more top-half, the front-shoulder jerks, and the hand / bat path gets screwed up.

    If you can throw front-toss, get yourself a pitching screen and get to work. I place the screen 15-20 feet away, and with the pace I usually throw, the reaction time from release to contact is the about the same as with game pitching. Stop any lunging, and work for solid and consistent contact from a smooth swing. Also work on proper reaction to the inside / outside pitch.

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    Certified softball maniac FP26's Avatar
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    I am with rdbass in that this is probably a mechanical/sequence issue and not a confidence issue, although it could develop into that. Without the aid of seeing video, my "guess" would be an "all back / all forward" pattern that is very common among that age group (youth baseball and softball in general). If so, until she can fix the mechanical issue, I would suggest having her focus on the pitcher during her on deck time. Use that time to get her timing down by simulating the pitch and swinging just as if she was in the box. Then she will be better prepared for when she does step into the box. However, this will probably not help with the change of speeds until the mechanical portion is addressed. When I work with hitters, my most important topic is timing. And good timing is linked closely to the hitter's sequence. Good luck to both of you!
    "Once you stop learning, you start dying" -- Albert Einstein.

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    I eat, sleep and breathe softball quincy's Avatar
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    Like you stated, striking out that much is probably not a mechanical Issue.

    My go to for batters swinging early is hit the ball to right field, assuming she is a righty then go from there.

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    I eat, sleep and breathe softball JAD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by julray View Post
    Yep 14u is 38 feet in Canada. I know, it's insane. We played a tournament (12u) in Buffalo last year and the girls had to adjust from 35 feet/11 inch ball to 40 feet/12 inch ball. I will get a video. Any thoughts on the mental approach, any thing I can do to get her confidence back up.

    Cheers
    Is the pitching plate at 38' or is that your estimation of where the pitcher is after a stride?
    "I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times" ~Bruce Lee

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    It wasn't me. rdbass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quincy View Post
    Like you stated, striking out that much is probably not a mechanical Issue.

    My go to for batters swinging early is hit the ball to right field, assuming she is a righty then go from there.
    Sorry, I'm going to have to disagree. If you JUST work on the mental side of hitting your DD(OP) probably won't be playing at age 15.
    Last edited by rdbass; 05-16-2017 at 11:49 AM.
    I don't know sh!t from shinola!

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    Checking out the clubhouse Dandan111's Avatar
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    Get the Tee and net out. She needs contact and drive the ball.
    I'd say elbow down, put the ball in play. My 2 cents ��

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    Super Moderator sluggers's Avatar
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    Bunting practice might help. Stress "catching the ball with the bat" on the bunts.

    Bunting is completely about watching the pitch and getting her hands into position to bunt. Often a kid in a slump simply isn't watching the ball. Have her do a bunch of reps bunting, and she'll be more focused on the ball.
    Ray

    Every softball parent keeps a hockey mask and a butcher knife in their car...

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