If your hitter struggled to make contact to all fields last season check out our version of the 3 tee drill series & how it can help them develop a consistent bat path
Every hitter wants to hit more line drives. Every coach wants to see their hitter hit more line drives and every parent wants to see their kid hit more line drives. But how can hitters achieve this without changing their swing? The answer is in a hitter's contact point.
Thousandths of a second. That is how long the ball stays on the bat at contact. Everything we do as a hitter is to set up for those thousandths of a second. How we get to that point is extremely important to the result of contact, just as when we get there. Without the proper sequencing and path, limitations to the swing will always occur. Timing is considered vital to the swing. If you’re not “on time” for the pitch, very little damage can be done. But when we look closer what does timing control?
Being “on time” with the pitch to me means creating the proper contact point in relation to the hitter's body. The contact point being too far out in front of their front foot can lead to early timing, with vice versa contact being made too close to the hitters back foot leads the hitter to be late. A hitter's ability to control where in relation to their body they make contact with the ball is crucial to their timing and ability to consistently hit line drives.
Golf is a sport with similar movements in the swing as baseball. The only difference is a different plane caused by the ball being on the ground and the fact that the ball is stationary. The ball being stationary allows them to create the optimal contact point and positioning for each shot. Here’s where it gets interesting.
In golf, much like baseball, different ball flights are required on different swings. With the ball being stationary, the golfer is able to align themselves to the ball differently depending on how they want to shape their ball flight. The image below shows that the more they want to hit upwards on the ball, the farther the ball is moved in front.
With an understanding of a rotational swing that makes sense. The ball being farther in front allows the clubhead more time to rotate upwards in the swing. Unlike golf, in the baseball swing, we always want the club head (barrel) to be attacking the ball upwards or also known as “on plane”.
Oftentimes when referencing ball flight and a hitter struggling to hit line drives, mechanics is the first thing looked at. In actuality, they might have a good swing and don’t need mechanical adjustments; they just make contact too deep in the zone. Hittrax gives you the ability to check the point of contact on each swing
However, this gives feedback on the ball relative to home plate, not the hitter. So, the next time you have a hitter struggling to hit consistent line drives, first check where they make contact and how that can affect ball flight.