By: Brendan Dougherty
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We hear the phrase “He Made an adjustment” used in baseball all the time. Baseball is a game where you must be able to adjust. If you want to continue playing at the highest level, then at some point in your career you are going to have to adjust different things. Either you will make some swing adjustments, arm adjustments, physical or mental adjustments. Hitters must constantly adjust. Average hitters will adjust from game to game. Good hitters will adjust from at-bat to at-bat. The greatest hitters of all time can adjust from pitch to pitch. The ability to adjust during the game or even during the at-bat is difficult at times. We can use more data then ever and usually the hitter that is prepared the most has success often. Most teams will have some type of opposing pitchers’ chart that they will use to track how the pitcher is attacking the hitters. If you are preparing for your at-bat, then you should know what pitches he has thrown in different situations. You can also see how he has pitched to you in your other at-bats. The more information you have before you get into the box is going to allow for you to get a pitch that you want to hit and do damage! Using all the data that you possibly can and putting it into what you are trying to accomplish when you get into the batter’s box. It will give you a slight advantage when you are trying to make those adjustments during the at-bat or moving forward to your next at-bat. I have found over the years that creating a system of adjustments for each hitter according to what type of pitcher is on the mound allows the hitters to focus on smaller adjustments that they may have to make during the at-bat. We have a category for each type of arm that a team may have. It breaks down what adjustment should be made, how to attack each arm so that the hitter understands the big adjustments and can focus on getting their pitch and doing damage. The chart below is a breakdown of what type of pitcher and what adjustment the hitters should make.
Each Pitcher that we face is different in some sort of way or another, with this plan we can put each arm into a Category, and we know and understand what our plan will be when we get into the box. Hitting is about Rhythm and Timing the pitcher’s job is to disrupt that timing. We will put every possible arm we will face into a category and what adjustment we will make.
STOCK RHP/LHP– (HIGH ¾ TO OVER THE TOP ARM ANGLE- 87-89 FB, BB, CH) WILL MIX ALL HIS PITCHES, WILL GO TO THE BB WITH RISP.
HITTERS PLAN- LOOK FOR A CERTAIN PITCH UNTIL 2 K’S. LOOK OFFSPEED WITH RISP, MOST LIKELY WILL TRY TO GET AHEAD EARLY WITH HIS FB. CAN BE AGGRESSIVE EARLY IN COUNT. RHH VS. LHP TOES WILL BE ON THE LINE NEAREST THE PLATE. LHH VS. RHP TOES ON THE LINE NEAREST THE PLATE.
SINKER/SLIDER RHP– (3/4 ARM ANGLE FB WILL RUN INTO A RHH AND AWAY FROM LHH, SLIDER WILL BE MORE OF A STRIKEOUT PITCH)
RHH- WILL BACK OFF THE PLATE A COUPLE INCHES AND LOOK FOR A PITCH MIDDLE IN. A LOT OF SINKER/SLIDER GUYS THE SLIDER WILL BACK UP ON THEM AND THEY WILL LEAVE IT OVER THE MIDDLE OF THE PLATE.
LHH -TOES ON THE LINE NEAREST THE PLATE AND WILL LOOK FOR THE BALL MIDDLE AWAY.
POWER ARM– (EVERYTHING IS HARD 92-96 FB, BB IS STRIKEOUT PITCH)
HITTERS PLAN– WIN THE FRONT PART OF THE PLATE! FEET IN THE GROUND EARLY AND GET BARRELL TO FRONT PART OF PLATE.
SOFT LEFTY- (NOTHING IS OVERPOWERING, WILL STAY AWAY WITH EVERYTHING)
RHH– UP IN BOX TOES ON THE LINE WIN THE BACK HALF OF THE PLATE! DRIVE BALL TO OPPO BIG PART OF THE FIELD!
LHH– ON PLATE, DRIVE BALL TO THE OPPO BIG PART OF THE FIELD!
SUBMARINE GUY– (LOW ARM SLOT OR FROM UNDERNEATH)
RHH- BACK OFF PLATE LOOK FOR BALL UP AND MIDDLE MUST TAKE BB!
LHH VS. RHP– ON TOP OF PLATE BALL UP AND MIDDLE OF PLATE TAKE BB!