Wednesday, April 28, 2010

2 strike approach

Hitting with two strikes requires a different approach than hitting with less than two strikes.

With two strikes you must hit the pitcher’s pitch (if it is a strike) and you cannot “sit on a pitch”. This type of hitting is know as “reactive” hitting. You must see the ball and react to it

Two strike hitting is much tougher than hitting with less than two strikes. Major League hitters on average hit less than .200 with two strikes and above .320 on average with less than two strikes.
If you want to hit .300 in the Major Leagues, you need to learn to hit with two strikes. If you can get your two strike average up - you will improve your overall batting average

Two strike hitting tips:
1. Keep your swing short. Some hitters shorten their stride or eliminate it altogether with two strikes. The short stride or no stride approach starts with a wider stance to begin with (you are essentially starting in a “pre-stride” position. The longer you can look at the pitch (to identify it) - the better with two strikes.
2. Use an “inside out swing” with two strikes, going to the opposite field will give you longer time to identify the pitch. This is a great time to let the ball get deep and hit the inside half of the baseball.
3. Concede the long ball and just get the barrel on the ball - as Ted Williams used to say. Don’t try to do too much, just hit a line drive (first choice) or ground ball (second choice) somewhere ( to the opposite field if need be).
4. Crowd the plate a little bit. Make sure you have good plate coverage. Don’t let the pitcher sneak a strike by you out there.
5. Widen your strike zone slightly. Don’t chase real bad pitchers, but don’t get “rung up” on a close pitcher either. The “two strike” strike zone should be slightly expanded in the hitter’s mind to avoid being called out.

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