Taller Posture and Hitting the Low Pitch, New Drill Reveal!

In my “Fix Your Posture, Fix Your Stride and Much More!” article I talked about how striding with a tall posture will make your heel to heel stride more frequent and consistent.  Also, I mentioned that there would probably be quite a few questions about how to hit the low or outside pitch without the commonly taught ’tilt’ or ‘hip hinge’ at most instructors teach.  Many instructors teach this due to the success of LARGE hitters like Miguel Cabrera and Albert Pujols who are big ‘early tilters’.  My contention is that the larger you are, the less important the ‘full turn’ is in the swing due to the mass of the hitters.  Remember:  Force = MASS x Acceleration.  If MASS is higher, then Acceleration (read turn) can be less and the hitter can still generate the same amount of swing force.  This is why Cabrera and Pujols (HUGE guys) can turn less and hit the ball just as far as Blue Jays OF Jose Bautista, Brewers OF Carlos Gomez, or Cubs INF Javier Baez, who are all elite turners.

The video below outlines how we explain the way we think a hitter should turn to the low pitch:

The video below shows the drill we use to get all of our hitters to get on plane early without sacrificing their turn with early tilt.

Thanks for reading!

Chas Pippitt, Leader of the Baseball Rebellion

PS: here’s a video of Cubs Rookie Jorge Soler using this move in a game.  Yes, I see this particular pitch is high.  I’m putting this example in as a quick response to a question from Matt on a player doing this move in a game.  Please see my comment response for further explanation.

This video shows one of my older players hitting a low pitch.  Much less “TILT” inward than most people teach and you can clearly see the hips working sideways while the shoulders work down.

About the Author

Chas Pippitt is the founder of Baseball Rebellion, and creator of the Baseball Rebellion / I.T.S. Baseball Hitting System. Chas has invented three hitting products, the Drive Developer, the Rebel’s Rack, and the Bat Drag Buster, which are currently used in ALL 50 states and internationally in over 10 countries. When not working on articles or doing online lessons for Baseball Rebellion, Chas Pippitt is the owner and head hitting instructor at I.T.S. Baseball. A baseball training facility, in North Carolina, which offers in-person lessons and acts as the research facility for all of Baseball Rebellion’s methodology. Chas has done over 20,000 lessons, and that practical experience has given him the unique ability to develop powerful and adjustable hitters, using his proprietary drills and special ability to explain and improve hitting techniques to hitters of all ages through video. Wish you could learn and train with Chas Pippitt? Now you can by signing up for Baseball Rebellion's Online Hitting Lessons!

43 Comments on "Taller Posture and Hitting the Low Pitch, New Drill Reveal!"

  1. matt morella October 16, 2014 at 8:52 am · Reply

    for once I have to disagree with you Chad—Tilt is a biomechanical move that allows the same turn mechanics adjusted to different planes. If I follow your logic here, you are saying that I now have to incorporate a different biomechanical move for lower pitches, so, at what point in the strike zone do I no longer use this approach, mid thigh, belt ??? Your golf logic doesn’t hold water because of the difference in shaft lengths between a wedge and a driver, the length of the driver allows for less spinal tilt not the mechanics. Bottom line is that we have to have the bat 90 degress (or there about) to the spine at contact for maximum velocity, so your contact position is going to look very similar to that of miggy or albert at point of contact. Please provide some reference video of a MLB player who makes this move you describe so it can be seen in use.

    • Chas Pippitt October 16, 2014 at 11:21 am · Reply

      Matt,

      Im about to add a video of Cubs rookie Jorge Soler doing this move in a game. Honestly, there are NOT many examples of players hitting this way as the 22 year old players grew up watching Sosa, McGwire, Arod, Bonds, Pujols and other large home run hitters who do NOT need a full turn due to their huge (enhanced) MASS.

      The Golf logic is not flawed, it’s correct…I’m not talking about the shaft length, I’m talking about the range of motion in the turn based on spine angle. The increased ROM of the turn, along with the increased length of club, lead to the increased distance.

      For example, if a golfer was on a platform and had to hit driver at a 9 iron body tilt, it would go farther than the 9 iron, but not as far as the driver on a normal flat surface would.

      What we believe is the best way will look similar, but it will not have the same results due to HOW the body got there and the acceleration advantage and Range of Motion advantage of the more upright turn.

      I hope that helps…

      Chas–

  2. George October 16, 2014 at 2:29 pm · Reply

    Hi Chas,

    The way you describe things makes perfect sense… It completely logical! Your understanding is deep and wide on the body movements used by players to become very good or great hitters — and you have a gift for explaining things so they can be understood… But is it possible there is another factor to consider? It is not a part of the golf swing… only the baseball swing. When you first hear what I’m talking about you will realize its importance in teaching and coaching. It will provide further simplification… And reduce the few still mysterious areas of the swing theory…

    If you will PM me, I will put together a PowerPoint (from a book I’m working on) of what I want to share with you

    George.

    • Chas Pippitt October 16, 2014 at 2:51 pm · Reply

      George,

      I await your powerpoint with baited breath!

      Chas–

      • JohnW August 26, 2015 at 11:48 am · Reply

        Why not “batted” breath…:)

  3. Ryan October 16, 2014 at 4:16 pm · Reply

    Outstanding information. I’ve learned a ton from you guys at Baseball Rebellion. Everything from your articles to videos to training devices are making a big difference. Thank you and keep bringin’ it!!

    -Ryan

  4. Ryan October 17, 2014 at 12:09 pm · Reply

    Chas,
    Great article! I always look forward to new updates on your site as I am a youth coach in the “minority” when it comes to hitting instruction. It is frustrating to see and hear the “hit down on the ball”, “knob to the ball” “squash the bug” instruction that is so common these days. I teach hitters to hit the low pitch with a very simlar approach, but using key words. One of the things I see and use for this is telling the kids to turn the bottom hand under the elbow, not out, which keeps the hands up and in but puts the bat path on a much more vertical plane, while maintaining the good angles of the hands and elbows established early in the stance into a higher finish at the shoulder. I also try to stress the importance of a strong top hand that stays palm up as long as possible to prevent rolling over on the low pitch, very common with the hit down guys. This works very well also on low inside pitches with runners in scoring position. We hit a ton of low inside pitches back through the middle instead of to the shortstop. (for righties) It can also be easily cued with “low pitch/ higher finish” and “high pitch/ flatter finish” or “ferris wheel”, “merry go round” for the little guys. Thanks again for a great update.

    Ryan
    SA, Texas

  5. Bobby October 17, 2014 at 8:28 pm · Reply

    Ok, I see where you’re going and it makes sense. But maybe you can help explain why, today, Joey Meyers is over on his site promoting “showing your numbers” while “tilting in over the plate” and he’s using Buster Posey as a model. (Posey not being the size of Pujols) Is he using the “spine engine” and you’re not? or is your idea just a different way of using the “spine engine”?
    What do you think about “showing the numbers”?

    • Chas Pippitt October 20, 2014 at 6:51 pm · Reply

      Bobby,

      I don’t really understand your question. Joey Meyers and I are not affiliated hitting wise anymore. I have no influence over his content or recent Hitting Performance Lab articles in any way. That being said…

      I saw his article/video/study on showing the numbers and the spine engine.

      I think its clear in his experiment that his movements are, as expected, flawed. Neither of us are elite hitters, never were, so we’re going to make mistakes in full speed demonstrations.

      He showed his numbers, but his his back eye from the pitcher/camera. I would also say that it was interesting that his bat was ‘slower to impact’ even though it was moving faster.

      There will be some ‘inward tilt’ on some swings. My article was about what makes more bio-mechanical sense, not what ‘happens’ at the highest levels. I think you can train a better move.

      I hope that helps…

      Chas–

  6. Tweety Bird October 20, 2014 at 9:46 pm · Reply

    Chas,

    Your info on hitting is mediocre at best. It’s all about Knob to ball man. The MLB needs more guys who have handsy swings haha. Chopping wood is the way to go for hitting mechanics. Gotta get that back spin on the ball to hit mamo tanks like Phil does.

    Miss you guys, I’ll be in Durham in December.

    • Chas Pippitt October 21, 2014 at 11:08 am · Reply

      Brandon, HA!

      GREAT COMMENT. see you in December.

      Chas–

  7. George October 27, 2014 at 8:50 pm · Reply

    hello this method is this the correct way to swing for all pitches or you are simply just talking about hitting a low pitch with this method? you explain it sooo well thank you

    • Chas Pippitt October 28, 2014 at 11:18 am · Reply

      George,

      Specifically Low Pitches

      Chas–

  8. George October 28, 2014 at 10:48 pm · Reply

    whats the differences with your methods of hitting and naturalhitting.com? the videos that i have seem from your youtube page you dont talk about the load before you stride? just curious why? can you do a video step by step to your swing method. i would really enjoy watching that video you explain everything soo perfectly soo thats why im asking you about doing a video with you swing method

    • Chas Pippitt October 29, 2014 at 12:32 pm · Reply

      George,

      Our entire website explains our methods…

      Chas–

  9. Justin Mattison November 19, 2014 at 10:36 am · Reply

    Hey Chas,

    Thanks for the article, the help, the wisdom, the teaching, and being an advocate for the little man (whether it’s a little guy hitting, or a little baseball training center that believes in the same philosophies).

    My question here will have to do with plate coverage and bat angle through the zone. With an angle like that, my initial thought goes to a big man that was pretty good at driving oppo while staying (Ryan Howard)(from what I saw with the naked eye). That being said, is it simply repetition on the low pitch with the increase vertical angle you would advise, or would you advise sitting in a little lower with the legs to help with getting the barrel less vertical?

    Thoughts, concerns, and philosophy on that are greatly appreciated.

    Justin

  10. Wesley A Kring November 20, 2014 at 10:13 am · Reply

    So, to boil it down to one essential difference (low pitch vs non-low pitch).

    The one essential difference in mechanics when hitting a low ball (as opposed to a non-low ball) is to “side bend my body back.”

    If I understand, this means that (while the hips are rotating) the back shoulder dips slightly so that the shoulders point OVER the pitcher’s head rather than at his nose.

    PS—Mikiah, a successful football season as a sophomore. Serious All-Conference consideration until hand infection led to hand surgery and missing five games. Just beginning off-season baseball conditioning now.

  11. Wesley A Kring November 20, 2014 at 10:14 am · Reply

    The dow rod demonstration emphasizes “vertical” movement only in regards to the low pitch. I.e., it is a more horizontal movement (although still not strictly horizontal) for belt-high and higher pitches, right?

  12. Teacherman February 5, 2016 at 12:50 pm · Reply

    Your demo, shifting your weight first, then laterally tilting…..is a swing killer.

    • Chas Pippitt February 5, 2016 at 4:20 pm · Reply

      How would you improve it Rich?

    • Gabe Dimock February 8, 2016 at 3:40 pm · Reply

      Rich,

      Would you agree that separation occurs between the lower and upper halves as the pelvis turns like a merry go round and the upper body begins to tilt like a ferris wheel (back shoulder coming down, front shoulder coming up)?

      -Gabe

  13. Teacherman February 6, 2016 at 11:42 am · Reply

    Wet met 6.5 years ago. You still do not have a hitter that overlaps. And you never will until you learn how and when the weight shifts

    • Chas Pippitt February 8, 2016 at 11:27 am · Reply

      Rich,

      As always, thanks for reading. Yes, we did meet 6 years ago. With Swingbuilder in Atlanta. I remember it.

      I asked how you’d improve it? I don’t recall your answer in your comment. I approve every comment other than self promotional links, so the other comment won’t be approved.

      I can’t attend that weekend anyways, i have fly ins. But as always, I’m willing and able to have a civil discussion on hitting whenever you’d like.

      Chas–

  14. Teacherman February 8, 2016 at 2:27 pm · Reply

    You don’t recall that I said your hitters don’t overlap?

    • Chas Pippitt February 9, 2016 at 9:40 am · Reply

      Rich,

      Gabe asked you a question, and so did I. How specifically would you improve the drill/move?

      Chas–

  15. Teacherman February 9, 2016 at 9:14 pm · Reply

    To Gabe.

    Yes, but your problem is you can’t define upper and lower half correctly.

    To Chas.

    Again….learn to overlap. How many times do I have to say it?

    • Gabe Dimock February 10, 2016 at 3:25 pm · Reply

      Rich,

      Thank you for responding. I think the back hip should turn and begin to thrust which causes the back knee to turn in and the back heel to come up. In my opinion, this allows the pelvis greater mobility and increases separation and stored energy. At the same time, the shoulders should begin to tilt (more like a ferris wheel) to start the barrel in the right direction as the separation occurs. How would you alter this definition of upper and lower half? What do you mean by overlap?

      -Gabe

  16. Teacherman February 11, 2016 at 7:59 am · Reply

    You will never overlap until your hip is the upper and your leg is the lower.

    That is the only way you will match high level hitters.

    Your statement of the hips being the lower and the shoulders being the upper is why your hitters can not pass the video test.

    And here’s what’s most interesting. Your throwers do it. Your hitters don’t.

    • Gabe Dimock February 11, 2016 at 11:33 am · Reply

      Rich,

      Thank you for more clearly defining your thoughts. So you would have the back knee turning in before the back hip?

      -Gabe

  17. Teacherman February 11, 2016 at 3:32 pm · Reply

    The rear hip NEVER turns in. It becomes fused to the leg when it coils….and the LEG turns the hip/leg assembly…..while the hip does it’s level best to NOT turn forward.

    There is a rag wring like load/stretch in the rear hip socket. Hip coiling. Leg trying to turn forward.

    The lateral bend you speak of…..IS THE FUSED TORSO laterally tilting over/around the ball of the rear femur.

    THAT…..is the only way you can overlap.

    Tell em where you got it.

    • Gabe Dimock February 12, 2016 at 2:03 pm · Reply

      Rich,

      Relax man. It’s been one day and we’ve been busy. I think many of our hitters do match great hitters. (Go to our twitter page and watch the first video of Spencer.) I like the gears image you showed. I think it makes lots of sense with the rear hip being the driver and the shoulders tilting to create depth and separation. In my opinion the leg movements we see come from the action of the driver.

      -Gabe

  18. Teacherman February 12, 2016 at 11:55 am · Reply

    awaiting moderation

    awaiting moderation

    awaiting moderation.

    or

    Hmmmm…..maybe I’m (they’re) wrong

    • KC Judge February 12, 2016 at 5:01 pm · Reply

      Rich,

      My name’s KC Judge. I’m the head of strength and conditioning here at Baseball Rebellion. I was in the hitting program the last 3 years of my professional career so my insight isn’t from that of an instructors standpoint but from one who used this information at a high level. I think you’re hyper focused on the lateral tilt in itself and not the more important aspect in regards to what causes the lateral tilt. The lateral tilt you’re proclaiming to be a “swing killer” is a product of the rear oblique turning on and it happens after the back hip starts to turn in towards home plate. As the hips open, side bend is the link between the hips and the shoulders. As for the leg being a “gear” thats just a fundamental misunderstanding of lever systems and the kinetic chain. Your focus is on the effect (knee going in heel coming up) not what is going on above it. The opening of the stomach makes the back hip turn in which turns the knee, followed by the ankle, followed by the heel being pulled up and forward. All of this leg, knee, and heel movement you’re calling a gear is the byproduct a powerful turn. They are not active components in a high level swing. I have an example of one of our hitters doing what you say is impossible in a game if you would be interested in seeing.

  19. Teacherman February 12, 2016 at 4:10 pm · Reply

    YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING.

    That kid has no chance regardless of his exit speed. He is not and never will be ‘quick enough to the ball’ with those mechanics.

    What good hitter goes down to AND down through the ball?

    You and Chas’ problem is YOU DON”T SELL OUT TO THE VIDEO.

    The Video is not your guide.

  20. Teacherman February 12, 2016 at 4:11 pm · Reply

    Exit speed determines how far.

    Quickness determines how often.

    He ain’t very often.

  21. Teacherman February 12, 2016 at 4:37 pm · Reply

    Notice Bonds is UP THROUGH on both swings.

  22. Teacherman February 12, 2016 at 4:40 pm · Reply

    Want more…..Spencer has NO CHANCE on the outside corner.

    He’ll stare at it….strike three….because he can’t get to it. His swing only offers ducksnort flares on the outside pitch.

    Why?

    Because the energy of his swing is in the wrong direction.

  23. Teacherman February 12, 2016 at 5:41 pm · Reply

    KC Judge,

    If you know so much….why can’t any of you produce a hitter whose swing matches the pattern of the greats.

    You can’t do it.

    Yet…..you claim you are right.

    That is ego, not truthseeking.

  24. Teacherman February 12, 2016 at 5:45 pm · Reply

    “”is a product of the rear oblique turning on and it happens after the back hip starts to turn in towards home plate.””

    The above…..is absolutely a false statement. the back hip NEVER independently turns in toward home plate.

    And your belief…..that it does….is why you can not produce the belt loop movement of Pujols, Bonds, Cabrera, Manny, Ted, Mickey…..all of them….as they laterally tilt.

    You can’t do it.

    Please at least admit your students do not match that overlap.

  25. Gaz Chaud February 19, 2016 at 12:11 pm · Reply

    Richard,

    Could you post on your blog some video of a couple of your pro players, documenting changes you helped them implement?

    Also, could you post video of your most improved player?

    That kind of documentation would help, and making you look less like a raving lunatic.

  26. Calvin Baxter December 6, 2016 at 1:35 pm · Reply

    I am not saying you are wrong or arguing!….only throwing some thoughts on the page.

    I feel like these mechanics you show are really good for power, but lack on swing plane when compared to the guys like Miggy and Pujols (or Ted Williams or Daniel Murphy). And it isnt that you cant get on plane with the low pitch..you clearly do, but I think the low posture has an ability to change the swing plane and react to what the pitcher throws more easily.

    For example,

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h5Um-baoK2U There is Ted clearly with the tilt you when his front foot lands. However, it looks like he stands up as he rotates to hit a higher pitch. This sounds like a really effective way to get on the plane of every pitch…assume it is low, and react to the high pitch using your big muscles to flatten out the bat for you. This also makes sense to me because I think you have to hit the low pitch farther out front than the high pitch to get the proper launch angle.

    So with the High posture you showed do you think high and adjust to low? Is it easier to adjust your swing plane from that high posture than from the low posture? Maybe it is player to player? I find posture one of the more interesting topics right now, so I really like to hear your thoughts on posture and swing plane.

    Thanks,

    Cal

    • Chas Pippitt January 10, 2017 at 11:38 am · Reply

      Cal,

      The high posture I demonstrate in the article is a slight exaggeration of what I think should actually be used. By standing taller with a more vertical barrel, the hitter is actually PREPARING for the pitch to be LOW.

      Think about adjusting on a grounder, you work, down to up…that’s the same way a hitter should attack the strike zone.

      Williams is an interesting example, as are all ‘old time’ players as the catchers basically stood up when they hit, so the entire game was different. Now, the squatting catcher must be accounted for as each pitch is usually intended to be low in the zone. Our system prepares hitters to look for low pitches, which they will get at a very high probability, as they progress through the levels of the game.

      chas–

Leave a Comment