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popping up fast pitching


Aug 21, 2008
Boston, MA
DD is U14, playing on a U16 rec league (LL). In the winter she played indoors against fast pitching. When she first came outdoors this spring she couldn't hit slow pitching but could hit fast. Now, because most pitchers are slow, she can hit slow pitching great, but anything with speed gets popped up.

Sometimes it's to the outfield, but it's so damn high it gives the fielder plenty of time to get to it. Often they stay in the infield, maybe the edge of grass.

I'm thinking I'll take her to the cage and work on fast pitching with her, but does anyone have any suggestions re: what to do to flatten out her hits?

May 25, 2008
Pickerington Ohio
Unless we see her swing it is really a guess as to what is causing the problem. If her swing is solid I would start doing some intense T work before going to a batting cage. Crystal Bustos said at a clinic I attended that just her T work took over 90 minutes to get through and the T is the place to start to fix swing mechanics. Have your DD hit off the T from all positions into a net with a ribbon or tape set at somewhere between 36 to 42" off the ground and her goal is to hit the ribbon with line drives off the tee. Watch the barrel of the bat after contact, if it ends below the top of the T, big problem, she is swinging down at the ball. If it is way above the T, upper cut, problem but easier to fix than swinging down. If you see either, get her to a good hitting instructor, get the RightView Pro instructor program and educate yourself or read this hitting forum and learn how to teach a good swing. The amount of knowledge shared here is amazing.
Sep 29, 2008
Northeast Ohio
I've seen this often. A couple of observations I've made:

1. Usually the batter is way late and so the bat is actually moving downwards before it squares to the good contact point out front. I'm guessing she pops out to the right side and hits weak grounders that she beats into the ground to the pitcher or left side.

2. She might be disconnecting away (not behind) from the body to much in the load and thus swinging more outside - in. This will cause a cut across and under the ball and the bat will usually continue in a downward path past the point of contact. Thus...the pop up from a bat cutting under the ball.


Aug 21, 2008
Boston, MA
I forgot about Bustos and Tee work , I should've known to take out the Tee.
I'm guessing she pops out to the right side and hits weak grounders that she beats into the ground to the pitcher or left side.
She seldom hits anything weak, but you called it: pop-ups to the right and grounders to the left! Last night she was fortunate to have a right fielder playing her like she was going to pull the ball to left (which is not unusual-in fact the coaches had put a kind of shift on for her). Two times she popped up down the right field line which dropped in for hits. If they were line drives I would say they were excellently placed- but I knew better.
we went to the cage today and did a little Barry Bonds drill and she seems to be a little better, but her mechanics don't look right (non-existent, perhaps?). I'll break out the tee later and give that a go. She needs to remind her muscles what to do.
thanks again!

Ken Krause

May 7, 2008
Mundelein, IL
See if she's dropping her back shoulder as she starts the swing. When players panic on a swing, a lot of times they try to get on the plane of the ball right away, and do it by lower the back shoulder right away instead of starting rotation and then taking the back should forward toward the ball. Just a suggestion.


Aug 21, 2008
Boston, MA
Thanks Ken- I believe that was happening because now that you mention it, she did have that problem in the past but I had forgotten about it. I think I need to film her and see it all in slo-mo.

The trip to the cages (and some pseudoephedrine PE) seemed to get her back on track. Seems she had been battling a sinus headache for 3 days and was having bouts of dizziness that she neglected to mention. Faced an excellent pitcher Sat night and was doing better. Last night, more improvement.

I still need to video her to see what's really going on.

thanks again!
Aug 4, 2008
Look at what causes the back shoulder to come down. It is getting the elbow in front of the hand. The back hand must stay strong on the back side and stay stacked. Hand elbow. This causes you to hit pop ups. If the elbow gets ahead of the hands your back shoulder is pulled down from the force of the elbow moving forward and MOST coaches will describe it as you are dipping or dropping your back shoulder. Try it yourself by pulling your back elbow forward at the elbow with your lead hand on your elbow and the shoulder goes down ward.

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