By: Hunter Ridge
When it comes to hitting, it’s not just about what you’re doing in the batter’s box but, what you’re doing outside of it too. It honestly took me until my freshman year of college to understand what all this meant. The following information is what helped me become successful and hopefully it will do the same for you.
As a hitter you can be a valuable asset to not only yourself, but also your team while in the dugout. Watching from the side can be beneficial in the long run for many reasons. While in the dugout, pay attention to what the other team’s pitcher throws during certain counts, look for his go to pitch, and look for his “best” pitch as well as his worse pitch. Just because you aren’t in the game doesn’t mean you still can’t stay in the game. Another way to stay in the game without being in the game is watching when the opposing team is warming someone up in the bullpen. Take mental notes of what they are doing with what pitches. BE READY/PREPARED WHEN YOUR NUMBER IS CALLED!!!
On Deck Approach
If you get three at bats in the game, then you should get six. If you get four at bats in a game, then you should get eight. Being in the “On Deck” circle isn’t just for joking around with teammates or checking to see what scouts are there. Being in that circle is YOUR chance to get on time with the pitcher. As long as you are on time with your swing, good things will happen for you. Hitting is all about your mental approach and timing. Make sure you have an at bat while being in the on-deck circle. Play through situations that could happen when you come up to bat and what you’re looking for.
Finally, have a plan when you get to the batter’s box. Once you step into that box make sure you are confident and mentally prepare for what situation you are coming into. What I mean by that is know the number of outs, know where your runners are (if there are any), and know what pitch you are looking for. Do not, I repeat, do not go up there just free swinging because I can promise you: A) nothing good will come out of that and B) you will not stay in the line up much longer.
“Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other half is physical.”