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How to hit a rise ball?

Oct 4, 2016
158
18
Our 12U team came up against our first true rise ball pitcher and struck out 15 times. We lost 2-1 so if we could have gotten a few more hits it could have been a different game!

What is the consensus on how to approach a pitcher like this.

Thanks!
 
May 17, 2012
1,952
48
How fast was the 12u pitcher throwing? It is very doubtful she was throwing a riseball at 12u.

Assuming she wasn't throwing a riseball you are really asking how to hit a high fastball.
 
Mar 26, 2019
66
18
Central Ohio
Our 12U team came up against our first true rise ball pitcher and struck out 15 times. We lost 2-1 so if we could have gotten a few more hits it could have been a different game!

What is the consensus on how to approach a pitcher like this.

Thanks!
Good question. We played the Texas Glory Midwest 06 over the weekend and only three of our girls got a hit off their pitcher. My daughter was one of them, but she is a slapper. There is an advantage being a slapper. The pitcher walked two and struck out 9. Everyone was saying she was throwing a rise ball the majority of the time. I'm not sure what the speed of the pitcher was, but she was a small girl.
 
Last edited:
Feb 7, 2013
3,179
38
You have to practice hitting a riseball to be good in the game to hit one. The other option is to not swing at any riseball (if they look to be at the top of the strike zone or higher). Some say move up in the box to hit the riseball before it "rises" but I feel this is wrong advice as the pitch will get to the batter faster (slower reaction time to hit) and riseballs don't actually "jump" or banana up but flatten out as they reach home plate (i.e. a riseball will not drop as much as a 4 seam fastball) giving the apprearance that it jumps..

I would set up your pitching machine to pitch high fast balls to your batters and/or do front toss high in the zone. Many 12U batters have a tendency to drop the barrel of the bat as it enters the hitting zone, making the riseball more effective as they swing under the ball. Practice, practice, practice.

Lastly, unless you have two strikes on you, the batter should be focusing on swinging at pitches that are within their personal hitting zone. For example, if you like low, inside pitches, look to attack the pitch if/when it is in that location. Batters need to be patiently, aggressive not just swing at pitches near the entire strike zone.
 
Oct 2, 2011
3,311
113
Florida
On a high fastball/riseball pitcher it is pretty simple. You don't swing at pitches you feel are coming in at your hands. You make them bring it down into the zone - and since most 'riseball' pitchers are really just high fastball pitchers (and they are likely behind in that count at that point) you get a lot of very manageable fastballs to hit.

This is especially effective in younger age groups where the 'riseball' pitchers are generally the harder throwers for their age group.
 
May 7, 2015
123
28
SoCal
To me, players that have a very efficient swing that attack from the top seem to do well on high and fast pitches. I work in high tee work on TTB drills to make sure that DD doesn't ever drop her hands or swoop too much. I'm happy and move on from the drill when she can line drive or stay on top of the high tee inside and outside
 
May 12, 2016
1,987
63
IDC what science or videos prove.. from a hitters perspective (speaking from experience) a rise ball appears to rise. And the hitters perspective is all that matters when it comes to hitting, :). Best advice, make the pitcher come into the zone, stop swinging at high pitchers. If she's throwing rise balls for strikes in top of strike zone, hitters need to anticipate movement/plane of the pitch and focus on keeping hands above the ball. Seeing a rise ball pitcher.. or any pitcher that throws a pitch that doesn't drop as much can create havoc for hitters, it's unnatural for a ball to move that way.
 

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