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Re: Re: Question for Jack

Posted by: Jack Mankin (mrbatspeed@aol.com) on Tue Aug 26 17:33:40 2003

>>> Jack I have seen on the message board that the swing is a slight upercut by the great hitters. I was always taught to focus on the top half of the ball. What do the great hitters focus on when rotating to the ball ? I hope you don't say I see the ball I hit the ball. 90% of the young hitters I have worked with when they swing and miss are under the ball, I have always told them to focus on the top half and it seems to resolve the problem. I guess I am struggling on what to tell those same kids that appear to be under it but yet they are suppose to be swinging up at it. <<<

Coach C
>>I will be in the minority here, but the first move for me is to start down to the ball then, as the the back shoulder begins to dip the bat will begin to level off and then upswing. From my experience most kids have trouble slotting the rear elbow and because of that the bat drops below forearm level at impact. Essentially they drag the bat. I think Gary Sheffield does a wonderful job of slotting the rear elbow, whil maintaining a flat swing. Yes he has a very slight upswing, but he is not trying to swing up.....he swings down.
I don't believe in trying to swing up, but that's what people see so they teach it. Pujols is another that starts down to the ball, but levels off at contact and finishes high. <<

Hi Gentlemen

Here are a couple of points to consider in your discussion.

(1) Nearly all of the better hitters start with the meat of the bat higher than the back-shoulder. And since contact is made below the belt, it is obvious the bat must be swung downward before it starts in an upward path. The difference between having the swing plane in line with the path of the ball or cutting down through it is determined by the batter’s mechanics. The better hitters keep their hands back at initiation and the bat-head is accelerated on a downward path back behind the back-shoulder (back toward the catcher). The path of the bat will then bottom out and be on a slight upswing in the contact zone. If, on the other hand, the batter thrusts the hands forward at initiation, the downward path of the bat will most often occur out in front of the shoulder and will normally continue its downward path right through the contact zone. --- The main point is – did the bat start downward ‘behind’ or ‘in-front’ of the batter?
(2) I fail to see how a batter can keep the bat above the forearm when the forearm is belt high and the bat-head could be knee high at contact.

Jack Mankin


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