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Laying off the high ones?

May 9, 2008
12
0
New England
I have 3 or 4 players on girls 7th/8th softball team that constantly go after the high pitches out of the strikezone. Every practice and game I talk to them about it but then when they get up to bat that mysterious force field comes and blocks out everything that you've said and they swing at pitches that are no where near being strikes.

On at least 2 of them I think it can be attributed to lack of patience. A yearning to get the 'big hit'.

Any ideas on how to correct?

Thank You.

Darrell
 

May 11, 2008
13
0
Central Texas
high ones

At the risk of sounding cruel. The only way that i have managed to get one girl to lay off high pitches,swing so hard that she losses balance,not keeping her head down on the ball and every other bad habit that goes along with no patience or swinging for the fence,is to make her bunt. If it really is that they are swinging for the fence or just not listening you will know it quickly and they will change there minds about doing it the proper way.

Randy
 
May 7, 2008
442
0
DFW
Darrel

You have to constantly reenforce laying off to your hitters. One of the things I have done in the past with my teams was put them in a circle around me with their bats. I then throw wiffle balls to them with colored tape on them. One at a time around the circle.

They have to call out the color before the ball gets to them. Forces them to focus on the ball to contact. I will throw the ball to every location. In, out, Up, Down. We make a game of it. They score points if they hit the coach pitching or a teammate in the circle with them. BUT if they swing at a bad pitch they have to give me 5. That would be 5 pushups. At the end of the round. (When we go through the balls about 3 times) We declare a winner based on points.

The girls have fun, the coach gets everyone involved and can work with them on their swings and you would be amazed at how fast they learn the strike zone when they know if they swing at a bad pitch there are consequences to their actions. It will help with their conditioning. The "Slow" learners get really strong too. :)

Have fun with this one.

Elliott.
 
May 12, 2008
2,217
0
Good stuff. I would add this. Don't tell them what not to do, tell them what TO do. Keep after them to "look down" or some such positive phrase like "waist down" etc. My theory is when you tell them to lay off the high stuff, the only thing the brain remembers under stress is the last word or two-"high stuff". :) Or at least it seems to work that way with the kids I coach.
 
Swinging High and Taking Low

I coach a 10U team and have found that recently - In the last few weeks - My team is going through the same issue but with one other problem; They are all taking the called third strike at the knees.

We are trying to work with them to recognize the knee high strike, but if anyone has specific drills to help us out, that would be great.

Thanks

Dave
 
May 5, 2008
358
0
Sometimes tees can help with that. Work them off a tee at the top and bottom of the strike zone so that they recognize what strikes look like.

Of course, with some umpires it's a little different and with two strikes your batters need to understand that they may have to swing at something that is a bit outside of what you show them as the edges of the strike zone. Sometimes putting them in a two strike situation when they are hitting live pitching in practice also helps. Let them know they on every pitch, they have two strikes and they need to swing at anything close.

Mark has a good point about telling them what to do instead of what not to do.

You could also make it the "goal" for your practice. Before your live hitting practice let your players know that "today's goal" for batting practice is to "swing at strikes." Of course, you can change your goal, but again, it should tell them what TO do not what NOT to do. Then after practice ask them how they think they did with the goal. You may want to do this for more than one practice and see if that helps.
 
May 12, 2008
2,217
0
I coach a 10U team and have found that recently - In the last few weeks - My team is going through the same issue but with one other problem; They are all taking the called third strike at the knees.

We are trying to work with them to recognize the knee high strike, but if anyone has specific drills to help us out, that would be great.

Thanks

Dave
How well do they drive the knee high pitch? IME, the kids watching called third strikes are often looking at a pitch that me and their subconcious both know they can't hit worth beans.
 

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