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Fastpitch Softball Hitting Tips

FastpitchFan

Softball fan
Feb 28, 2008
496
0
Montreal, Canada
We have great people with great knowledge here. Let's share some great softball hitting tips.

Any softball hitting tip that you thing is important to share or cues that you have used successfully.

Let me get started...

"Wait longer for the ball to come in"

Rationale: One of the big problem I see with with hitting in softball is that batters don't wait long enough - especially against slower pitching. They are always ahead and are out of their power position at contact.

What is your or are your best tip(s)?

Marc
 
May 7, 2008
110
0
I don't know if it's my best tip...

...because it needs to be given to very young girls (10 years old) and continually reinforced. BUT, if you do, it can be tremendously effective!

"Lay off HIGH pitches"!

It makes me CRAZY to see how many girls from 10-college continually swing at pitches 8-12 inches out of the strike zone! Can you imagine swinging at a pitch 10 inches off the plate outside? or low? NO, then why do we accept so many swings out of the strike zone up?

My DD NEVER swings at high pitches. This discipline helps her in several ways.
1) She gets a lot more walks and a lot more hitters counts.
2) She takes away some pitchers favorite "out" pitch.

I hope this helps.

Keith
 
May 7, 2008
110
0
Here's another.

Video tape your hitters and let them watch themselves. Nothing like "seeing" what you are really doing and NOT what you think you are doing.

Also great to see progress.

Keith
 
May 12, 2008
2,217
0
Yes and I would add let them compare themselves to video of elite hitters.

On the high pitch thing, amen and amen. If you can get a kid to look waist down with less than two strikes you will see their obp shoot up. I suggest NOT telling them to lay off the high pitches but tell them what you want rather than what you don't want. Emphasize "look waist down" or some such verbiage. Seems to me when you say "lay off the high stuff" the only thing their brain remembers during the split second of stress at decision time is "high stuff". :)
 
May 7, 2008
29
0
High ones are strikes, too...

Question: How can a hitter strike out without swinging the bat and without seeing a pitch in the actual strike zone? Answer: All she has to do is play softball anywhere in America where the umpires are getting paid by the game--especially in tournaments with time limits. If you teach your kids to look waist down only, I'll guarantee you most of them will be walking back to the bench with mystified looks on their faces after being called out on neck-high pitches.

1. Get into the box ready to hit the first pitch (unless there's a runner on and she's got the steal sign). Most pitchers try to get ahead in the count and will groove the first one--- especially since they know that some knuckleheaded coaches actually insist that their hitters always take the first pitch. A player on my daughter's team is notorious for taking dream pitches right down the middle-- getting behind in the count, then striking out or popping up on borderline pitches while having to protect the plate. Her hitting coach is an idiot. The guy who coaches the team can't go that deep.

2. Don't look waist down. Look for a pitch you can handle. Some hitters handle the low stuff better. Some hitters handle the high stuff better. What would you rather have your hitters do? Tomahawk a high pitch up the alley for a double? Or hit a one hopper back to the pitcher on a knee-high drop ball? Forcing hitters to "lay off" pitches in certain areas is not only over-managing, it's counter-productive. Every hitter is different. A girl from the University of Michigan broke the game against KSU open yesterday by lining a letter high outside pitch into the top row of the right field bleachers. If she'd taken the waist down advice, she wouldn't have swung.

3. Teach your hitters to know the game situation when they're in the box. (It wouldn't hurt for the coach to be aware of the game situation, too). If it's a close game in the late innings and you need a baserunner, hitters should be extremely selective. If you've got a five-run lead late, it's a different story.

4. MOST IMPORTANT! Stop getting into your players' heads after every single pitch. There is nothing more annoying to a hitter than having some goofball in a pair of bermuda shorts and some $50 sunglasses hollering, "Jessica! Lay off the high ones!" after a girl swings and misses for strike one. If Jessica doesn't know what she's doing by the time she steps into the box, then you're not going to fix it by shouting at her in the middle of an at-bat. Shut up and flash your meaningless signs (you know, the ones you flash when the hitter has two strikes and there's nobody on base).
 
May 7, 2008
110
0
Here's my best advice!

Let's all stop posting and just ask "itsNOgood" if he'll teach us everything we need to know.

Keith
 
May 7, 2008
110
0
This helped my DD tremendously.

"Hire" a pitcher that is slightly older than your DD to throw BP to her.

We pay a 14 year old pitcher (DD is 12). To throw BP weekly over the winter. We will work situations, counts, etc. My DD sees about 75 pitches/week for 3 1/2 months.

The pitcher is NOT throwing meatballs, she's trying to get DD out!

As MarkH pointed out in another thread...our focus is good, hard swings NOT just contact. If she's having a good day, we ramp up the pressure by increasing the difficulty of the situation. If she's having a not so good day, we will work on hitting outside pitches the other way. Or hitting drops, etc.

Keith
 
May 7, 2008
235
0
On the way home from a middle school game recently, my dd was excited about her hits. The pitcher was awful (lobbing them in). Most girls on the team took the walks. My dd said, "Mommmm...when the pitcher is lobbing the ball, I just step back in the batter's box." I couldn't argue with her success that day. I know there has been discussion about moving in the batter's box. My husband encourages my children who have now been playing for a few years to begin to rely on their instinct as well as their knowledge.

Ang
 
May 12, 2008
2,217
0
Itsallgood, you missed the part about less than two strikes but no matter. At what level have you employed your philosophy successfully because it goes against everything I've seen work up through the college level and it goes against everything I've read about working at the pro bb level. The only kids at a developmental age who need to be whacking at up pitches with less than two strikes are the kids who can take it out of the park...a lot. Having said that, by the time they get to college, if a kid is a great high ball hitter with at least gap power and not so much on the low pitch, you sometimes have to play the cards they hold at that late date.
 
May 20, 2008
1
0
Consistency and Tempo

Hi, what as one tip works for someone may not work for another, but I always try to drill is consistency and tempo. Pre swing routine and swing thought coupled with swing tempo. Seems to work under pressure. It is a battle, pitcher VS. batter, and when you have a set system it seems to ease the pressure so you can perform...
 

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