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3870 Views 49 Replies Latest reply: Jul 30, 2010 1:49 PM by NathanQ RSS 1 2 3 4 Previous Next
scooter__103 Rookie 2 posts since
Apr 19, 2006
Currently Being Moderated

May 22, 2009 9:51 AM

Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

I am so confused. My twelve year old son has played travel ball since he was eight years old and has been instructed for years to hit the top half of the baseball. The coach of his travel team now is telling him to his the bottom half of the ball so that he will not hit hard ground balls. My son is having a difficult time understanding why he is being told to do this. It is against everything he has been taught to this point. Any thoughts from others would be appreciated. He is very strong for a 12 year old. My idea is that when he hits ground balls that have a high bounced on the infield , he is cutting off his swing or falling back a little on contact. Not the fact that he is hitting the top half of the ball.

 

  • THECOACH__44 Legend 289 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. May 22, 2009 9:57 AM (in response to scooter__103)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    How about hitting the ball right in the middle.

     

    Boy you have some really incompetent coaches and instructors.

  • Kyle_ Legend 556 posts since
    May 25, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. May 22, 2009 10:01 AM (in response to THECOACH__44)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    He's being forced to change his swing angle, plus overthink his approach to hitting.

     

    Just tell him to pick out a good pitch, and hit it hard.

  • TG. Legend 954 posts since
    Jul 25, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. May 22, 2009 10:07 AM (in response to Kyle_)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    As a player I was never taught to hit the top half or bottom half. As a coach I have never taught to hit the top half or bottom half. My son had hitting instructions from college coaches and pro players this winter. No one told him to hit the top or bottom of the ball.

     

    After proper swing mechanics, see the ball, hit the ball hard. 

  • oldhardballer Legend 787 posts since
    May 25, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. May 22, 2009 10:50 AM (in response to scooter__103)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    If not mistaken, this was a part of that Video that came out a few years ago from that team that supposedly won 4 AAU Titles in a row.  It was also the video which told infielder to tap their gloves with th e ball before throwing it.  IMO that video hurt more players techniques then any I have seen.  It, by the way, was the video that also sold the ball with the different colors???  And the batter was supposed to call what color he hit???  My advise...see a good pitch and hit it where it is pitched.  Keep hands inside the ball and try to drive it up the middle.  Take outside pitches and curve balls the other way, by letting them get deep.  Don't chase them (in other words dont bring bat head around the ball).   Hope this helps.  Don

  • Scottie04 Rookie 2 posts since
    May 12, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. May 22, 2009 10:53 AM (in response to TG.)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    Unlike a few other posters here, I have heard many instructors and coaches teach a player to focus on hitting the top half of the baseball.  I think maybe a few people are taking this too literally.  The idea is to focus on the ball until contact.  The top half of the ball should be the focus, for the simple fact that you can literally see it all the way to contact...the bottom half of the ball cannot be seen so how can you hit something you can't see?  Your son's current coach is only causing your son problems...top half=line drives and ground balls...bottom half=whiffs and flyouts.

     

    The swing is not "level"...you have two types the Upper Cut (Adam Dunn) and the normal swing (Albert Pujols).  At contact, Alberts bat is going slightly down while Adam's is going upward...if you want your son to hit like Albert teach him top half...if you want your son to hit like Adam teach him bottom half.

  • oldhardballer Legend 787 posts since
    May 25, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    7. May 22, 2009 11:05 AM (in response to THECOACH__44)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    Scotty, I understand what your saying but a 12yo, will not grasp this.  I have seen too many start chopping down at the ball and hitting grounders not line drives.  Once again, at this level (12 yo)  See it....Hit it...   Don

  • Callyjr Amateur 8 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    8. May 22, 2009 11:25 AM (in response to oldhardballer)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    Pujols is not level, nor is any other MLB hitter. 

  • Callyjr Amateur 8 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. May 22, 2009 11:28 AM (in response to Callyjr)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half
  • Callyjr Amateur 8 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    10. May 22, 2009 11:31 AM (in response to Callyjr)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half
  • Callyjr Amateur 8 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    11. May 22, 2009 11:32 AM (in response to NA_Umpires)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    my 8 yr old grasps this, don't sell your kid short. show him video of the pros and them himself. stop the video and compare.

  • kal_ Legend 583 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    12. May 22, 2009 11:43 AM (in response to bunks15)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    Coach should coach!  Hit the middle!

     

    Never could understand anyone instructing hit the top half... hit the bottom half...

     

    Bologna!  (Hold the mayo)

     

    Anyone that teaches hit this half or that half... never faced a 90 mph fastball!

     

    Just hit it!  (And hope ya don't miss!)

  • kal_ Legend 583 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    13. May 22, 2009 11:47 AM (in response to Callyjr)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    last pic good example... of how interpretation goes bad.

     

    a coach would say... swing level!

     

    what he REALLY means is... swing level to the incoming pitch!

     

    pitchs fall (go down)

     

    guess what?  swings go up!

     

    notice the swing plane through the HITTING ZONE - slightly up, matching the incoming flight path of the ball

     

    it ain't rocket science!

  • kal_ Legend 583 posts since
    May 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    14. May 22, 2009 11:55 AM (in response to kal_)
    Re: Hitting top half of ball or bottom half

    note to cally's last pic...

     

    3 hitting coaches would view that SAME video...

     

    one would say he's swinging down

     

    one would say he's swinging level

     

    one would say he's swinging up

     

    in each of their interpretations... they are all correct!

     

    swing down - swing down to the ball ("short to")

     

    swing level - swing level through the hitting zone to match the incoming flight path of the ball to increase contact probability

     

    swing up - opposite to the downward flight path of the ball

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