Thursday, March 27, 2008

UPDATED- March Madness Standings

1. Sean- Champion
2. Ethan
3. Diaz
Sweet 16 Team Drawings

Kansas- Ethan

Santana’s Changeup: Hitters Never See It Coming

Here is a link to a story on Johann Santana's change up. This is a great article on how he has worked to develop this effective pitch.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


Great article from about the Davidson basketball team and how their committment to daily improvement has led to great success. Check it out.

Monday, March 24, 2008

How To Hit a Drag Bunt

Great clip on drag bunting from Minnesota Twins hitting coach. The bunt for a hit is a great offensive weapon as you could tell from watching our game yesterday.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Spring Team Goals Set

Spring Teams Goals were set on March 19th. The team came up with 5 goals for their spring season.
They are:
1. Win the season ending Prep Tourney
2. Win 75% of games played
3. Hit over .300 as a team
4. Always play at a high standard with GREAT teamwork.
5. Do not let the weather affect our play.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Cuts and Relays can decide a game!

We expect you to go through the cutoff man on all throws but do-or-dies. Keep in mind 95% of all throw from the outfield at the major league level go through the cut off man. Throwing through the cut off man can save free bases by not allowing the trail runner to advance thus keeping the double play in order. Here is a great example of a well ran cut and relay. The execution of cuts and relays can save games as evident in the video. Check it out!

Friday, March 14, 2008

IF I COULD BE LIKE MIKE: Jordan's Mental Edge

by Jeff Janssen, M.S.Peak Performance ConsultantUniversity of Arizona

Think of some of the all-time greatest athletes in sport - Joe Montana, Bille Jean King, Muhammed Ali, Cheryl Miller, Hank Aaron, Nolan Ryan. As you think about these people, reflect on the characteristics they possessed that made them so legendary. While most likely these athletes were physically gifted, I'll bet it was their mental approach to the game that truly made them outstanding. For example, one such superstar we all are familiar with is Michael Jordan. While Jordan was blessed with quickness, jumping ability, and height to help him excel, Michael's biggest strength was his mental game. Jordan held a decisive mental edge over his opponents throughout his entire career. It was his mental toughness that propelled him to numerous individual awards as well as six NBA championships.

Why was Michael so mentally tough? Five things truly set Michael apart from his competition:

1. Committed - Michael made a commitment from early on that he was going to push himself to be the best. He was self-motivated enough to put in all the long hours it would take to perfect his game - whether or not a coach was watching him. Over his career, he continually developed new aspects of his game as well as took care of his body in the weight room. "I had locked in, committed to my goals. I've always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come. I don't do things halfheartedly."

2. Competitive - Michael is probably one of the most competitive people who ever lived. Whether it was basketball, business, or golf, Jordan had an intense desire to win. Opponents quickly learned not to challenge Michael with trash talk because he would take his game to another level and embarrass them. Competitiveness really encompasses two things - a strong desire to win as well as hating to lose. "I always had the ultimate goal of being the best. I feel that if I am considered one of the best players in the game, then I have to prove there is a reason for that."

3. Confident - Michael had supreme confidence in himself and his abilities. Even when he might have had an off night, he still wanted the ball at crunch time. Jordan's confidence was earned by all the hard work he put into his game. Michael was also confident because he focused more on the positive things he wanted to achieve instead of fearing failure. "I never looked at the consequences of missing a big shot. If I'm jumping into any situation, I'm thinking I'm going to be successful."

4. Leader - Michael Jordan was the undeniable leader of the Bulls. He held his teammates to a higher standard and made sure he walked his talk. If any of his teammates dared to slack off or disrupt the team such as Dennis Rodman, Michael quickly and effectively addressed the issue, often before coach Phil Jackson had to. Michael earned the respect of his teammates because of his commitment, competitiveness, and confidence. "The second I let down, particularly if I'm perceived as the leader of my team, I give others an opening to let down as well. If the person out front takes a day off or doesn't play hard, why should anyone else?"

5. Team Player - Finally, despite all of his individual accomplishments, Michael eventually learned that the true measure of any player is how well he can contribute to the team's success. Instead of complaining about his teammates shortcomings, Michael learned to make his teammates better by maximizing their strengths and allowing them to play important roles. Instead of complaining about his coaches inconsistencies, Michael learned to adapt and accept the beliefs and strategies put before him and made them work. He changed his focus from "me" to "we." "Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships."

While physically you may not always be like Mike, mentally you can work to develop the commitment, competitiveness, confidence, leadership, and team focus that propelled Jordan to greatness.


Good article on Troy Percival and the leadership he is providing for the Tampa Devil Rays.
Check it out:

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The POWER of POSITIVE! Self Talk

The running dialogue you have going on in your head (even when you aren't reading) is called your "self talk." In fact, although you have thoughts you can't fully express verbally, you could say that thinking is talking to yourslef. Thus, you do it all the time.

What do you say when you talk to yourself about your ability to play baseball? Remember that what you think often determines how you play. Your thinking consists of your self-talk, along with your imagery. Thus, the words you say to yourself impact how confident you feel, making self-talk a pretty important topic.

We are not always aware of what we are saying to ourselves. That's a good thing because if we were aware all of the time we'd go crazy. However, this is also dangerous because you may be trash talking yourself by saying "I stink," "I can't hit," or "I may never get anyone out" but you aren't aware that you are doing it, you won't tell yourself to stop saying it!

Because of all the failure that is built into baseball, alot of players spend a great deal of time talking negatively to themselves. Your self-talk is something you need to be aware of, at least to some degree. Most important though, make sure you choose to talk to yourself in an encouraging, confidence-enhancing way. In short, talk to yourself the way you'd talk to your best friend.


Figure out what you are saying to yourself when playing your best baseball will help you use self-talk to your best advantage. Say that to yourself whether you feel that way or not.
Here are a few examples of self-talk statements you can repeat to yourself anytime:

-"I am totally focused on each pitch"
-"I have paid the dues and I am trusting my ability."
-"It is my time."

-"Hit it hard"
-"Attack the ball"
-"Be aggressive"
-"Use the whole field"
-"See the ball"

-"The ball is going right there."
-"I'm the man."
-"Let it go."
-"Focus on the target, hit the target."

-"Hit it to me."
-"I can make any play."
-"Stay down."
-"Quick as a cat."

Info taken from Heads-Up Baseball

Monday, March 3, 2008

What does it take to win? TEAM

When asked this question, most players would reply with answers such as hard work, dedication, confidence, ect. The Philadelphia Phillies, who made up seven games with 17 to play last September to steal the National League East from the Mets, agree but also believe that what it really takes is TEAM.

It is important as a player to continue to overcome Human Nature….HN says to do what is best for me rather than what is best for the team. However, doing what is best for the TEAM leads to success.

Here are a few excellent quotes from the story, followed by a link to the entire story.

"I had always known it takes hard work and dedication," Brett Myers said. "But what it really takes is a team."

Jimmy Rollins: "We are more focused on what we need to get right. Not you get right, and you get right, and you get right. We're going to get right. We're going to be right. … Now it doesn't matter who gets it done. We don't care about who the hero is."

"Before," Rollins said, "it was like, 'Let's try to get Bobby up there and we'll have a chance.' Now I have confidence that if don't get it done, somebody will get it done behind me. Now we have a team."

Link to story: