The Offical Blog of the Baseball Coaching Digest

The Baseball Coaching Digest's blog is your online source to free baseball articles, free baseball drills, and free baseball tips. Our daily posts can help your plan baseball practice, improve your baseball drills, and help make your baseball workouts run smoother. Our daily post and archives provide your with hundreds of recommended baseball coaching posts. Make sure to bookmark this site for future visits. Have a great day and good luck to your team!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Baseball Training - An Off-Season Plan For Hitters

It is improtant to always work on your weak points. It's off season, you know it's important, but this is supposed to be fun. right! 1st Things First! Commit to having a plan. With a plan, you have direction.

By John Peter Pero

1st Things First!

Commit to having a plan. With a plan, you have direction.

With direction, you get more done in less time and are more apt to get results.which makes you want stick with your plan.and repeat it even more.which gets you better quicker.get it?

But.what do I plan?

My summary is to always work on your weak points.but let's mix the fun stuff in as well. It's off season, you know it's important, but this is supposed to be fun. right!

Here's a great idea for this time of year:

Try to hit at a home training station with a batting tee or (for more fun) with a soft toss machine and get into a batting cage as often as you can during the cold and off-season months.

Better yet.use your plan to decide what to practice & how to accomplish your goals (again.one of your goals is to accomplish more with less time).

It is a game that we are playing.it's the game you chose, so why not make up your own practice rules!

Here's some examples & ideas:

Divide everything you do into 10 swings with a purpose.




Round 1 - Begin with hitting to the opposite field.count your successes.out of 10 (this might simulate driving in runners on base)
Round 2 - Take 10 swings up the middle - just for focusing on a target.count your successes.out of 10
Rounds 3, 4 etc. examples Make it up. play games best out of 10. Some examples: * Hitting a long fly ball to score a runner from 3B (how many runs can you drive in. out of 10) * # of hard hit balls. out of 10 * # of ground balls. out of 10 * # of sac bunts. out of 10 * # of clean base hits. all out of 10 swings

Lather, Rinse & Repeat

And, of course, you can have a 2nd round on any of these ideas to see how you improve. Keep your own "scorecard" on a clipboard complete with dates and your results. Add a buddy and compete against each other.make it 9 innings (9 specific "tests" or a World Series best of 7) where the winner of each test chooses the next test.

I'm just making up these examples as I am writing, you do the same.

Just note that the most important points are:


Get a plan (one that is fun.so you will want to do it regularly).
Use these games as practice tools.
Compete with yourself or other players.or even Dad.
Make up your own games.and compete, whether it's against yourself, your Dad or a teammate. Just do it right or not at all.

Remember to plan your work and work your plan.In other words, stay focused! It's true in school, business, baseball and life in general.

http://www.baseballtips.com/

Baseball tips & youth baseball equipment, training aids & instruction! It's all here for baseball coaching of pitchers & hitters, little league to high school.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=John_Peter_Pero

CoachesBest.com
HurricaneTrainer.com
BatAction.com
HandsBackHitter.com
QuickSwingTrainer.com
AdvancedSkillsTee.com
BattingCagesDirect.com
BattingCagesrUs.com

Monday, July 27, 2009

Baseball Coaching Digest - Baseball Signals - Tips to Make You Successful

A basic part of the catcher's defensive work is the simple act of giving the baseball signals for the type of pitch he wants thrown to the batter. The baseball signals for the pitcher-and the rest of the defensive team, by the way-are given with the throwing hand held deep against the crotch. The signals should be simple. Prior to the match the catcher and pitcher must decide on their signs and signals. Master the signals, and your team will enjoy greater success.

By Ruth Cracknell

A basic part of the catcher's defensive work is the simple act of giving the baseball signals for the type of pitch he wants thrown to the batter. He doesn't do this casually, though. Like the pitcher, he should always study the hitters to pick out weak and strong points. After playing a team once, the catcher should jot down in a notebook whatever he has learned about the opposing hitters. Before the second game with a team, he and the pitcher ought to go over these notes. That might sound a little too "professional" for youngsters, but it really isn't.

The younger the player, the more glaring his weakness. There are some 12-year-olds, for example, who simply cannot hit an outside pitch. And, furthermore, they can't resist swinging at it-even though they can't reach it. We can certainly expect a 12-year-old catcher to remember that kind of a weakness in a hitter. The catcher can learn a great deal about hitters by watching their foot movements.

Does the batter step away from the plate when he strides forward for the swing? If he does, pitch him outside. Does the batter stand too close, or too far away? Is he deep, or up in front of the batter's box? The catcher should look for other clues too. Can the hitter get "around" on the fast ball? Does he wear glasses? Does he have a bad wrist? Is he a nervous hitter? Where does he hit in the batting order? Has he ever gotten a hit off the pitcher? If so, was it a curve ball, or a fast ball?

Oh, yes, there's more to calling for the pitch than just flicking the fingers. But, some of these weaknesses are very obvious and even the eight to 10-year-old catcher should be taught to observe them and make his pitching signs accordingly.

Curve Him Joe
The baseball signals for the pitcher-and the rest of the defensive team, by the way-are given
with the throwing hand held deep against the crotch. Many young catchers drop the signaling hand so low that the fingers pop out from underneath their tails. When that happens, of course, everyone in the ball park knows whether it's going to be a fast ball or curve. Keep the signaling hand just below the top of the thigh and be sure the glove hides it from the 3rd base coach.

The signals should be simple. It is suggested that the catcher show one finger for the fast ball, two for the curve and waggle the first for a pitch-out. He can sign for high, low, inside or outside pitches by using his thumb. For example, if the catcher shows the index finger, then points his thumb at the batter then at the ground, he's calling for a fast ball, low and inside. Again this may seem too advanced for a 12-year old, but the manager who follows this course, is teaching his catcher and pitcher to think.


www.BattingCagesDirect.com

He may not expect the pitcher to put the ball low and inside, but he's making him try. With a runner on 2nd base, the catcher must change his tactics. The runner can see the sign as easily as the pitcher and he can relay it to the batter. From high school on up to professional ball, catchers give signs in a "series" with a runner on 2nd.

Prior to the game catcher and pitcher may decide:
In a series of three, the sign that shows up once, is the sign that counts. (If the catcher signs 1, then 2 fingers and again 2 fingers, he's calling for a fast ball. If he signs 1-1-2, he's calling for a curve ball.)

In a series of three, the sign that shows up twice, is the sign that counts. (If the catcher flashes 2-2-1, he's calling for a curve ball, etc.).

In a series of three, the middle sign counts (or the first or the third).

Master the baseball signals, and your team will enjoy greater success.

Make your Baseball Signs work With These FREE Baseball Tips!
Visit: http://www.baseball-training.org/index.php

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Ruth_Cracknell






www.PitchingMachinesDirect.com

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Electronic Baseball Scorebook - The Tech-Savvy and Convenient Scorebook

Recording and keeping track of your team's statistics are now made easy thanks to the electronic baseball scorebook. This also lets you record your team placement, the quality of play during tournaments, and the history of each of your players. This type of scorebook is useful for both managers and coaches of baseball teams because it helps keep their records and statistics more organized.

By Ilse Hagen

Why go electronic?

Before the advent of the electronic baseball scorebook, there was the manual scorebook that comes in the form of spiral bound notebooks that has stat sheets inside. While they are significantly cheaper, you may have some difficulty in using one especially when it comes to keeping the data organized. For instance, you may have to struggle reading the handwriting of the person who is assigned to write on it, and you may have a hard time organizing the records later on when you do everything manually. Therefore, you are better off with electronic baseball scorebooks that boast extensive databases that can fit in all the data and information you need to input in them.

More benefits

The electronic baseball scorebook is technically a high-end software program that helps you keep track of your team's per-game statistics and season-to-date statistics. It can also be used for recording statistical reports of your rival baseball teams, the schedules, and the biographical information of each of your players.

Software tech support and compatibility matter

When purchasing electronic baseball scorebooks, make sure that they are equipped with software that is compatible with the operating system of your computer. Furthermore, make sure that it comes with free technical assistance or support that you can easily access by calling a toll-free number any time. That way, you can easily find solutions for any technical problems that may occur at any point in time, especially during a game.

Important information

Complete information on the electronic baseball scorebook is available PickyGuide, the authority in free consumer advice. Access top-ranked, best-reviewed, and most competitively priced electronic scorebooks in PickyGuide's recommended products section.

Important buying tips

More information on electronic baseball scorebooks is available in Picky Guide, one of the fastest growing online magazines giving free consumer advice and product information.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Ilse_Hagen


www.BattingCagesDirect.com

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Baseball Coaching Tips - Practice Hitting Vs Game Hitting


[Recreation-and-Sports:Baseball] I often get the question, why is it that a player seems to have correct hitting mechanics, and he practices well, particularly in t-drills and soft toss, where his form and technique are good. And then when he gets into the game, everything goes wrong.

By Joe Brockhoff

Let's understand three important principles when we talk about how to hit a baseball:

1. Mechanics, which include form and technique
2. Judgmental principles
3. Confidence

When a player is hitting off of a tee or in soft toss, this involves only mechanics. There are no judgmental or confidence factors at all involved. Whereas, in the game, judgmental principles may be even more important than mechanics. This involves reading the pitch and taking appropriate action.

Here is one of my best baseball coaching tips. The player who does only short-toss and t-hitting misses out on a major part of hitting, and that is judging the pitch in space (trajectory). When we practice with soft toss, it is "pitch - hit". But when we hit in the game, the sequence is "pitch - trajectory - hit".

And no player can perform at his best unless he has confidence. Tension forces a player to do things he would not do during practice. So how do we make the transition from practice to the game?

Hitting is a conditioned reflex. A hitter must practice to "groove" his stroke, and then trust it. In other words, 'no stinkin thinkin' at the plate. It's see-ball, hit-ball, have fun!

Toss and tee hitting only provide practice of mechanics, and the hitter needs much more. Not only does he need to see pitching from a distance, but he also needs to have some pressure put on him during his practice sessions.

In our baseball hitting tips, we can add a measure of pressure on the hitter in a batting cage by using a Power-10 series, where he works to hit 8 out of 10 pitches hard. This puts pressure on him to get a high score. He can also run a series of power-10's using out youth baseball hitting drills. This will also increase his confidence level.

There is an old saying that is so true:

Play like you practice and practice like you play. This was never more important than in the game of baseball. So here are some ideas to help accomplish this.

1. Batters should have some practice where they get some distance from the pitcher, either a machine or live pitcher.
2. Put some tension in the practice.
3. In every batting cage practice session, include a "Power-10", 7 or 8 hard hits out of 10 to increase confidence level and a good feeling of performance.
4. Use practice that simulates game situations and encourages players to feel good about their performance.

Former Tulane Hall of Fame Baseball Coach, Joe Brockhoff, fully explains his baseball hitting drills with the Super 8 Hitting System, completely demonstrated with videos and hitting drills to help you hit with more power and raise your batting average. http://www.LearnBaseballHitting.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Joe_Brockhoff

Monday, July 20, 2009

Tips on Baseball Pitching Mechanics


www.HurricaneMachine.com
By Alan Karpuch

It is a known fact that it is hard for any pitcher to have three innings. A pitcher needs to give up hits and walks, as well as work with fielders who make errors. If you are a pitcher and wants to improve your skill, it is recommended to ask advice on pitching mechanics. Remember that a lot of problems in pitching are due to poor mechanics.

Pitching mechanics can be hard for a coach to analyze at full velocity. If the basic structure is inconsistent, remember that even if you change one feature, the problem is still there. One of the most important things you need to know which motion is wrong and it is essential to solve the trouble in lack of control.

Every pitcher is required to practice everyday and remember that it is impossible to perfect the skill in just one day. Pitching is like any other sport - it requires practice to be good at it.

It is a fact that it is hard to find a new pitcher that has good pitching mechanics. Pitching needs dedication and hard work and you must take care of yourself completely. It is essential to be in perfect shape and pay attention on your arm and you must work on the right pitching mechanics in order to lessen the risk of arm injury. If you are just starting out, make sure to do a lot of throwing in order to develop arm strength.

Aside from physical strength, you must also develop your mental element of pitching. You must also be tough mentally in order to be a skilled pitcher. This element can be developed eventually and it is necessary to examine your performance every game in order to improve more. Always focus on the game especially on the hitter and face any problem appropriately. Remember that with good pitching mechanics, you can ensure your good health and success.

Alan provides information about Pitching Workouts through his website on Baseball Pitching Mechanics

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Alan_Karpuch

BatAction.com
HurricaneMachine.com
HandsBackHitter.com
QuickSwingTrainer.com
StayBackTee.com
AdvancedSkillsTee.com

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Steroids in Baseball - It is Illegal For a Reason

By Nathan R Park



The shameful use of steroids in baseball...

Anabolic steroids are a synthetic version of the male hormone testosterone. In it's normal state, testosterone boosts muscle growth. But when it is supplemented with steroids, you have an increase of muscle mass and enhanced endurance.

It is used by athletes to try to have that extra edge over the competition. Steroid side effects include mood swings, depression, roid rage, violence, aggression, hair loss/growth, acne, liver damage and the most severe...cancer.

Steroids provide a quick explosion of muscle mass and endurance, but long term provide an explosion of decreased mental and physical health.

Steroid use in baseball is illegal...and is against the Major League Baseball's rules. Yet some athletes today still resort to steroid use, for the quick gain of fame. It is believed that steroid use in baseball will lead you down the path of fame and fortune!!!...not the right attitude if you ask me!

Some people believe that using steroids in baseball will lead to increased hitting and running performance...due to the increase in strength and endurance that steroids provide.

But the side effects of steroid use in are clear...STEROIDS WILL CAUSE YOU HARM!

Although there has been many suspicions on steroid use in baseball, there is no proof of use of steroids to enhance current records in the record book.

It is not hard to see why some players may have been tempted to the dark side of steroid use in baseball. The pressure of having to keep up your game must be quite immense...But it is clear...STEROIDS CAUSE MORE HARM THAN GOOD!

The short-term effects of the use of steroids in baseball might seem tempting for some, but the long term effects say it all...

THE USE OF STEROIDS IN BASEBALL IS SHAMEFUL, DISHONEST AND DAMAGING!

You will be surprised at how much there is to learn about baseball. Visit Major League Baseball Brainiac - an excellent source for baseball history, facts and information.

For more information about steroids in baseball, check out the Baseball Brainiac page Steroids In Baseball.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Nathan_R_Park

Friday, July 17, 2009

More Unusual Baseball Statistics



www.PitchingMachinesDirect.com

By Aron Wallad

Come and See Those Interesting Baseball Stats
For some people this is Baseball Fantasy
For some people this is Baseball Memorabilia
For me it is joy and amazement. I love perusing the baseball stats.

Walter Johnson - One of the first to enter the Hall of Fame in 1936
From 1912 to 1915
He won 124 games Pitched in 196 games
Started 152 games and completed 131 games - Do you think the Senators had a strong bullpen?
10 years with an era of under 2
Lifetime era 2.17

Pedro Martinez
Third highest lifetime winning %
2653 strike outs in 2296 innings - an average of 10.39 strike outs per game
321 starts - 42 complete games

Christy Mathewson
His initial three years he had a record of 34-37
His next three years - 94-34 - He discovered spinach?
Lifetime era - 2.13
He pitched in a total of 11 World Series games. His era was .97 yes .97
79 career shutouts

Babe Ruth
Won 47 games in two year period of 1916-1917
Has 15th best era lifetime.
671 winning % is 10th highest.

Sandy Koufax
Last two years- He won 53 and lost 17
When most players careers lose steam at the end he had his best years.
In a two year period he struck out 699 batters.
Greatest pitcher I ever saw.

Grover Cleveland Alexander
From 1914-1917
He pitched at least 355 innings per year
He won 121 games
From 1915-1916
28 shutouts
In his career he
Completed 437 of 599 games started - He didn’t trust many people, most of all his bullpen.
Had six straight years of era under 2

Nolan Ryan
Won 71 games from the ages of 40 to 46
From 1972-1974 Struck out 1079 batters
Had 15 seasons of 200 or more strikeouts

Randy Johnson
Six years over 300 strikeouts
+ three years with between 290-299 strikeouts
First six years - 56-61 record
From ages 29-40 He had a 190-67 record

Article Tags: Three Years

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com


ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Aron Wallad has been a baseball lover for over 40 years. Writing about his favorite subject, baseball, has been a blessing. You will enjoy the heartwarming stories, the unusual statistics and inspiring quotes. But mostly you will love the heartwarming stories that hit a home run to your heart.
Join his ezine http://www.baseballsprideandjoy.com/index.php?tag=goart

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Holding The Runner In Baseball



www.CoachesBest.com

When playing a runner leading away from the base, any infielder has these objectives-catch the runner off the base; make the runner run the full 90 feet to the next base. The latter objective is very important at 2nd, because it is the spot from which a runner can score on a good single.

The runner leading away from 2nd usually has the second baseman in his field of vision. If the second baseman bluffs a run for the bag, the runner will see him and start for the base. By the same token, if the second baseman doesn't pay any attention to the runner, he gives the runner an opportunity to stretch his lead.

While the second baseman does not always have a good chance to work a pickoff play with the pitcher, he can decoy the runner into such a play for the shortstop. Visualize this:

Runner and second baseman on the bag just before the pitcher steps on the rubber. Pitcher stretches. Second baseman moves to his position. Runner leads away. Pitcher waits. Second baseman runs back to bag, runner returns to bag.

As the second baseman turns his back on the runner and returns to his position, the runner instinctively leads off. At this instant, the shortstop rushes to the base, the pitcher whirls and throws. The shortstop is back of the runner and out of his field of vision, thus the runner must rely on the voice signal of the third base coach to realize he's in danger. If the play works, the defense has an out. If not, it has put enough pressure on the runner to keep him reasonably close to the bag.

The second baseman returns to the base after every pitch and does not leave again until the pitcher is on the rubber. Then he should always move to keep pressure on the runner. Cut It!

With runners on 1st and 3rd in anything below the high school level of ball the defense has a tough problem. If the runner on 1st breaks for 2nd and the catcher makes his throw to 2nd, the runner on 3rd can usually score. In college or professional ball, the second baseman can often go to the base to play the runner going from 1st to 2nd. Then, if he sees the runner on 3rd try for home, he probably has enough power in his throwing arm to fire to the plate to catch him.

But, in the younger groups, second basemen rarely have that power. Here's a cut-off play that will help the defense in this situation.

The offense, first of all, will probably order the runner to steal on the 1st pitch and have the batter "take" to avoid a double play on a line drive. If the defense expects the play, the pitcher should "pitch out", giving the catcher a good chance to get the ball away to 2nd.

The second baseman, instead of going to the 2nd, runs to a spot halfway between the mound and the bag and on a direct line between 2nd and home. The shortstop covers 2nd, the third baseman 3rd. The catcher fires right at the second baseman's head.

If the runner on 3rd does not break, the shortstop yells "Let It Go!" The second baseman does and ducks out of the way.

If the runner on 3rd is breaking, the shortstop should yell "Cut It!" The second baseman cuts the ball off and throws to the plate. There are these "ifs":

If the runner going from 3rd to home stops halfway down the line-charge him.

If the catcher's throw is off line, cut it off whether the runner on 3rd goes or not.
Want Baseball Training Tips & Tricks? These Little-Known Secrets Will Have Your Youngster Hitting The Longest Yard Over The Boundary Fence! Click Here For Free Online E-Book: http://www.baseball-training.org

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

6 Essentials of a Great Baseball Team

The US lives and breaths baseball, the game runs in the blood and young and old are hooked up to the sport. There are baseball leagues major and little, baseball journalists and reporters, fans who own teams others who collect memorabilia and record histories. With the advent of the World Wide Web baseball has embraced cyber space and now there are websites that cover every aspect of the game and keep a pulse on current as well as past seasons and teams.

Baseball is a team sport and every player and team needs to be committed and passionate about the game. To succeed every team whether major league, minor league, or local needs the following:

1. A team spirit and commitment to the game. The team must work as a single unit and be devoted to the game. They must live and breathe baseball.

2. The team must have a good support system. It is not enough for a team to be devoted to the game, families, team owner, sponsors, the coach, school and college authorities and more need to understand the psyche of the team and create a strong impermeable support system.

3. The team must have a good coach who will lead the team in every way. The coach is the backbone of the team and needs to be tough and yet loving. He or she must care for the team and its every player. The coach must understand the team and its members better than he understands himself or herself.

4. The team must be devoted to the sport and yet understand that there is a world beyond baseball. So, every member must simultaneously prepare for life beyond baseball. Be trained in skills and have qualifications that will allow the player to live a fulfilled life after baseball.

5. Great focus must be placed on balanced nutrition and mental strength training. A strong mind and body makes a great baseball player. Team training must include aspects of health, nutrition, and mental strength. The team must have a balanced diet, a balanced exercise routine that includes breathing exercises and meditation techniques.

6. While winning can be the goal every team must play for sheer joy and each player must focus on his strengths and work out his weaknesses. The team must become an impregnable fort so that the opponents can never use kinks in the armor.

Baseball is a team sport that is often used to teach students and children life values and more. Baseball has gone beyond being a sport it is a way of life.

Arthur Raise is a writer for Discount Baseball Equipment , the premier website to find Baseball, baseball America, baseball history, baseball equipment, baseball field, baseball players, baseball trivia, baseball teams, baseball records, American league baseball teams and many more.

Monday, July 13, 2009

New Product Spotlight: The Hands Back Hitter by Swing Buster



www.HandsBackHitter.com


The HandsBack Hitter teaches the mechanics of the perfect baseball swing. It teaches hitters the proper "stride and swing" fundamentals for correctly hitting a baseball.



The Hands Back Hitter™ Pro Model is the simplest, most affordable, yet most instructive training aid on the market. And to insure that you will practice often, it makes you a better hitter while you are having fun.

The Hands Back Hitter Pro-Model.
Uses ALL type balls real and plastic; baseball or softball.
The unique popper design allows the operator to adjust pitch height for any type ball.
The same unit assembles for righties and lefties.
It comes with an extra string, 12 medium weight plastic balls, and a CD-ROM training disc.
This patented pitching machine/ batting tee hybrid controls the swing sequence for teaching rotational hitting and opposite field mechanics .
Extremely durable and used from LL to D-1 Programs. The trainer players love to use.
Easy to use...

Push down on the popper.
Place a ball on the launcher.
Load your hands back as you stride to landing on the firing cord.

The Hands Back Hitter™, the affordable, portable, personal batting station that keeps them training and swinging right even when your not there.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Great Baseball Hitting Drills For Keeping The Head Closed


AdvancedSkillsTee.com

By Joe Brockhoff

It is very easy to get into the habit of pulling off the ball. This is especially true for power hitters. Have you ever seen a power hitter hit a home run and thereafter, he can't couch the ball? What happened? The home run took him out of himself. So as he pivots, he is also pivoting his head.
First of all, hitters should never take a 100% stroke. Doing this invites pulling off the ball. For efficiency, the stroke should be no more than 95%, saving 5% for command. As coaches, we sometimes go too far in the other direction by telling them to "just meet the ball." And now they start to aim the bat, which is not good either.

Hitting is a controlled explosion. Continue to be aggressive, with a 95% stroke. So what do we advise? The hitter is pulling off because he's rotating his complete body when he hits. He must focus on his head rotating in the opposite direction to the hips. As the hips rotate to the pitcher, the head should rotate to the ball.

Here are three baseball hitting drills for this:

DRILL #1

Place a pile-on or glove across from the hitter just outside the batter's box in front of home plate (45% angle). After the hitter makes contact, he looks into the pile-on area. This keeps the head inside.

DRILL #2 (with pitching machine or live pitcher)

Hitter assumes his stance, with no bat. To simulate holding a bat, his top hand grabs the thumb of his bottom hand. Coach stands in back of the hitter and holds his head on both sides . The hitter takes batless strokes at the pitched ball, while coach restricts the head to keep it on the ball as it enters the hit zone.

DRILL #3 (Full Take)

The hitter will coil, stride, and read the pitch to the catcher. This keeps the head independent and disciplines it to stay with the ball. Note: This head discipline should carry over to his regular hitting, in the "full take", a pitch that is an obvious ball.

Coaching Points. The hitter should not go to the point where his head is pushing against the back shoulder. This locks up the back shoulder and restricts his extension. The head swivels. It should never tilt while reading the pitch. This causes the body to tilt also and the eyes to look on a vertical plane. Eyes must stay basically horizontal for best vision and body control.

Former Tulane Hall of Fame Baseball Coach, Joe Brockhoff, fully explains his baseball hitting drills with the Super 8 Hitting System, completely demonstrated with videos and hitting drills to help you hit with more power and raise your batting average.These techniques are fully explained in our baseball hitting instruction web site for the "Super 8 Hitting System", including batting aids and a series of baseball hitting videos, which demonstrates many baseball hitting drills. http://www.LearnBaseballHitting.com/lcp.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Joe_Brockhoff

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Baseball Players Shouldn't Be Afraid of Training Supplements


CoachesBest.com



By Gerald Fitz

Steroids are a dark mark on the legacy of baseball. By no means is baseball the only sport that has been infected with the disease of performance enhancing drugs. Sprinters have tested positive long before any baseball players were even thought to have been using steroids. Professional football locker rooms have been infected with all manner of performance enhancing drugs since the late 1970's. What hurt baseball more was the way that steroids were brought to light, and how players continue to be exposed as performance enhancing drug users.

Baseball in the mid nineties seemed to be forgotten. After a long and painful labor dispute a large portion of baseball's fan base were turned off. Attendance and television ratings were way down and it appeared that baseball might fall to the level of NHL hockey. Yet, there is something that brought fans back in large numbers. The home run. The most exciting play in baseball. Nothing is more exciting than seeing a hitter crush a long fly ball which screams over the outfield fence. During the late 1990's the home run was back, and the fans were watching. Legendary home run records were being broken, and the ultimate home run mark, of 715 held by Hank Aaron and once by Ruth, was being approached and challenged. The problem is that baseball came back and is now once again popular due to performance enhancing drugs. Baseball, in a way, owes the illegal narcotic for its success.

One of the problems with baseball's spoiled blood bargain with steroids is that they are sending mixed signals to all those training to be a future ball players. Baseball has been forced to support anti-steroid campaigns, but it still has a culture of encouraging upcoming players to gain a pharmaceutical edge. Future prospects are faced with a tough decision of gaining an edge through steroids or watching teammates who are using outperform them on the field. The decision is still being placed on prospects and high school athletes because baseball refuses to draw a hard line in the sand banning illegal and harmful performance enhancing drugs. The current policy of three strikes and your out is laughable at best. There are hardly any long term repercussions if a player is found using.

What baseball needs to do is to support healthy supplements. There are supplements on the market that will help a player to add muscle mass, and improve their physical conditioning. Creatine is an excellent example. Creatine hasn't been proven to have any long term medical side effects. Creatine is a substance that is naturally produced in your body. It is also not a steroid. Creatine just helps players to lift weights more often, without suffering such drastic lactic acid build up in their muscles which causes soreness. Many people are reluctant to take any supplements fearing that the supplement will become banned and they will be retroactively guilty.

If baseball would come out and support the healthy training drugs, like Creatine, and ensure people that they won't be punished for searching for a legal performance edge; then it would lessen the pressure that players feel to either take no supplements at all, or go all the way to using illegal performance enhancing drugs. Competitive people play baseball, and they are looking for an edge. They shouldn't fell afraid to use legal supplements to train. If baseball wants to get the steroids out of the game, then they need to help young players know just what they can take to get an edge.

For more info on the best creatine, visit My Top Form Supplements

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Gerald_Fitz

CoachesBest.com

Friday, July 10, 2009

Baseball Pitching Mechanics - All You Need to Know

By Alan Karpuch

Problems in life can sometimes cause distraction during a game and if this happens to you, it is best to approach your trainer and ask help especially on different baseball pitching mechanics. Your trainer can help you control your emotion and thoughts and use the important concept on the field. One of the most essential things that should be noticed is their attention on performing at their highest level. Remember that all physical and mental skills can be learned and developed with hard work and diligence.

An important part of baseball pitching mechanics is work out in order to respond faster, build a more athletic body, have a tougher mind, acquire more stamina for games, to practice longer without losing concentration and have the ability to execute even in hot conditions. It is recommended to do stretching for at least two to three minutes after every game. In order to play properly, it is best to have a regular exercise routine. It is also important to concentrate on different small factors involved in baseball pitching mechanics such as discipline, focus, taking care of your baseball equipments and teamwork.

One of the important baseball pitching mechanics is keeping the ball near to the ground as well as on the corners. You should also avoid walking at almost all the time except for some situations. Make sure to be assertive on the bases and never give easy bases to runners. It is essential to keep your mental state strong throughout the game. In order to increase speed, it is recommended to determine your fitness level and go on an appropriate fitness program. You can ask your trainer to perform a test for your conditioning quality and throwing mechanics aspect. In order to enhance your speed, it is best to change your pitch velocity. You must use bigger muscle groups in throwing a baseball instead of using your shoulders and arms only. You must learn the right way to pitch from the ground going up. Remember that speed comes from the forces that are added to the ball.

Alan provides information about Pitching Workout through his website on Best Pitching Workout

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Alan_Karpuch





QuickSwingTrainer.com

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Everything You Need to Know About Batting Cages

By Andy Brock

If you want to practice your hitting skills or if you just want your children to have a safe and protected space where they can play baseball, then you should get yourself a batting cage. Batting cages come in different styles and sizes. That is why you should know more about them before you purchase one for yourself or your family because there are so many choices available in the market. Here are some basic information that you need to know:


As the word implies, batting cages are made especially for hitters to improve their skills in hitting the ball. They could have an installed machine that throws a ball to the batter. Due to the consistent nature of the pitching machine, this could build confidence which would help the batter enhance his skills.
Batting cages are often protected with nets to keep the ball safely within the limits of the cage. This could prevent unfortunate accidents, especially if you want to use your cage in your backyard.
You can choose from three kinds of batting cages. First is the even-floored, non-automated type. If it is okay with you to retrieve balls from different places, then this type of cage is just fine for you. However, there are also batting cages that have uneven floors so that the balls that have been thrown by the machine will roll back easily to that side of the cage and can easily be picked up. The last type is the most convenient but probably the most expensive. This is the automated and mechanical type of cage. it has conveyors in which balls could be placed to be put back into the machines for yet another round of pitching.
The usual dimension of a batting cage is 55(l)x16(w)x13(h) feet. You should also know that you can maximize the function by installing several batting cages right next to each other, which means more space. If you can accommodate such space, then buy several cages. If not, just make do with the few cages that your space allows you to put up.
Make sure that you are wearing complete protection for playing baseball before you go inside the cage. Do not come close or put your face on the fencing or netting when somebody is using the cage right next to you. Not doing these precautions can cause serious injuries. Always keep the batting cage entrance close and never enter a cage that is currently being used by another batter.

Find more information on building batting cages at the website: batting cages.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Andy_Brock

BattingCagesDirect.com
HomeBattingCages.com
BattingCagesrUs.com
BattingCageBuilder.com

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Why is Tendonitis Such a Danger For Baseball Pitchers?

By Joshua Tucker

Read through baseball sports news, blogs, fantasy baseball sites, etc, and if you aren't already aware of how dangerous pitching is to baseball players, you quickly will.

Why exactly is Tendonitis such a problem for Baseball Pitchers?

Managing a pitcher and how active he is major strategy in baseball, especially in Major League Baseball.

Every day I see news reports of various pitchers getting benched, being placed on the injured list, and sent off to surgery and weeks and months of recovery.

It's too bad. All that could be avoided.

Tendonitis is an occupational hazard for major league baseball pitchers, and young men that work hard to join the ranks of a big league team.

Most of this kind of injury shows up in the arm anywhere from shoulder to fingers. Watch a pitcher throw a few times, it's no surprise. Even then pitching efficiently and effortlessly, there is A LOT of force, torque, internal movement of tendons, and muscle contraction happening over and over.

Over time after hundreds or thousands of throws, after muscles firing powerfully and pulling forcefully on their tendons, the muscles get set tighter and tighter. This starts a long Downward Spiral of increasing tightness, then increasing pain and tightness.

Whether a tendon gets irritated or actually has some micro tear to the tissue, the body kicks in an Inflammation process. This enhances the Downward Spiral by making things hurt more, which makes muscles get tighter....which makes things hurt more.

If treated the usual way, injury comes and goes, players lose time and stats to time resting and recovering from surgery. Look at all the players that have had surgery. How many of them are back to 100%, months or years later? How many of them aren't still dealing with tendonitis issues?

Tendonitis can end careers. It is a serious threat to a pitcher and his career. Whether it is Tennis Elbow, Wrist Tendonitis, a problem in the hand, Shoulder Cuff Tendonitis, or something similar, teams work hard to keep their pitchers healthy and able to play.

The problem really isn't pitching.

The problem is that the pitchers aren't doing the RIGHT self care to keep their bodies happy and healthy, as opposed to their bodies getting slowly more and more unhappy, until the pain is enough to stop them from pitching.

Rest, anti-inflammatory drugs like Ibuprofen, corticosteroid shots, and splints and braces really are not preventative measures. They just don't work. Want proof? Watch sports news for a while.

Tendonitis is a threat to baseball pitchers because it is a natural result of how they use their bodies, how their bodies naturally respond to that kind of ongoing stress, and because pitchers don't do the right kind of self care that successfully reverses the first two factors.

Joshua Tucker, B.A, C.M.T is The Tendonitis Expert. He educates, leads workshops, and trains individuals how to ELIMINATE their Tendonitis related issues like Tennis Elbow, Carpal Tunnel, Plantar Fasciitis, and Wrist Tendonitis. Joshua says "When you have tried all the usual options and they have failed, it's still not to late to become pain free. It's also never too early to start."

For more of the RIGHT information about how to Eliminate your Tendonitis, no matter how bad it is or how long you've had it, visit http://www.TendonitisExpert.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Joshua_Tucker



**********************************
CoachesBest.com
HurricaneTrainer.com
BatAction.com
HandsBackHitter.com
QuickSwingTrainer.com
AdvancedSkillsTee.com
BattingCagesDirect.com
BattingCagesrUs.com
**********************************
###############
FastpitchSoftballSupply.com
BattingCagesDirect.com
BattingCagesrUs.com
AdvancedSkillsTee.com
ZipnHit-Pro.com
###############

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Five Fundamental Steps For Good First Base Play


By Steven Michael

First base in baseball is more difficult to play than most people think. Good first basemen save their teams countless runs during the course of the season. They do this by using proper footwork and balance. Not all throws from infielders are on the mark. Low throws, wide throws, high throws, and every kind in between are what the first basemen must deal with. So, here are the top five footwork steps a fundamentally sound first baseman does.

1. Get to the Base Quickly

The first baseman should read the ball off the bat, and when it is hit on the ground, he should run to first base as quickly as possible. Naturally, he must take his eye off the ball, but experienced first sackers know where the base is almost instinctively. They use peripheral vision and repetition to know exactly where the base is and how many running strides it takes to get there -- but all first basemen take their eyes off the ground ball. Of course, when they get to the base, they find the ball and focus on the next step.

2. Set Up Correctly at the Base

Set up next to the base in fair territory and face the infielder who is fielding the ground ball. With his chest facing the infielder, the first baseman gives the best target possible to the fielding infielder. With four infield positions besides first base (the pitcher is now an infielder too!), there are four general directional angles the first baseman can use. Do not put either foot on the base -- yet. He should be in an athletic, ready position to catch any potential bad throw.

3. Read the Throw From the Infielder

This can't be overstated. From his athletic, ready position the first baseman now reads the inbound throw. Is it high, wide, or low? How much velocity does it have? Which infielder threw the ball? This last question is important because every player has a unique flight to their throws. Some infielders throw with high velocity all the time. Some have a natural sink to their throws. Experienced first baseman read the throw first, before moving his feet.

It's very important the first baseman not stretch to receive the ball until the throw is in flight and he has read it correctly. When I started playing first base in professional baseball, I did this incorrectly all the time. And many times the direction of my stretch was not the direction of the incoming throw -- and it cost my team precious runs.

4. Use Footwork to Receive the Throw and Touch the Base

When a good throw is in flight, the first baseman now moves his feet to make the catch while touching the base. Either foot can be used to touch the base; however, most young players always use the same foot every time. This is okay, but more experienced first baseman learn to use either foot to touch the base -- depending on the throw's direction.

For instance, if the throw is to the outside of the base toward right field, he will put his left foot on the base while striding out with his right foot in order to reach the ball. Conversely, when the throw is inside the base (toward home plate), his right foot is on the base and left foot is striding. By switching feet this way, he extends his potential reach by a good margin. And, for throws directly at the first baseman, either foot can be used to touch the base.

It's very important the first baseman not put his foot in the middle of the base. Players can get injured if this happens. We've all seen youth league first baseman put their foot in the middle of the base and the base runner either trips over it, or steps on it, thus injuring either the runner, first baseman, or both.

First baseman should always touch the inside of the base, not the top of the base. Inside means the edge of the base that faces the infield. Bases are approximately three to four inches high and have a crowned top. The sides of the base are high enough for the first baseman's foot to fit next to, or on the top edge of, the base. Also when throws are wide, either outside or inside, the corners of the base extend his reach and should be used.

5. Adjust to Poor Throws

The third step in our series here described reading the throw. If the first baseman determines that the throw is completely off line, he should use footwork to come off the base. Only repetition and experience can tell the player when to do this. In these instances, don't worry about touching the base, just make the catch. This prevents the batter-runner from advancing to second base, or other base runners from either advancing or scoring.

Low throws are another matter. If the low throw will skip far enough away from the first baseman, he should stay square to the throw and not attempt to stretch out for it. The idea is to provide time and distance to read the hop and hopefully catch the ball. Good first baseman know when to stretch for low throws and when to stay back and receive them on a long hop.

In between hops are tough. These are low throws that will not provide either a long or short hop. But, with the largest glove on the field, some first baseman get lucky and the ball bounces in to their glove. My rule on these throws is to relax your glove hand and do the best you can. But, and this is important, if there are base runners who will score when the ball gets by the first baseman, the first bagger should get in front of the low throw and block it. The batter-runner will most likely be safe, but it has prevented a run from scoring and given our team a fighting chance.

Steven E. Michael played seven years of professional baseball in the Montreal Expos, Detroit Tigers and Milwaukee Brewers organizations. He played collegiately at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona earning All-Western Athletic Conference, All-College World Series, and Sporting News All-America honors.

His new book, "How To Play Baseball Outfield: Techniques, Tips, and Drills to Learn the Outfield Position" is available at http://www.stevenemichael.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Steven_Michael

**********************************
CoachesBest.com
HurricaneTrainer.com
BatAction.com
HandsBackHitter.com
QuickSwingTrainer.com
AdvancedSkillsTee.com
BattingCagesDirect.com
BattingCagesrUs.com
**********************************

Friday, July 3, 2009

Steroids in Baseball - It is Illegal For a Reason

By Nathan R Park
The shameful use of steroids in baseball...

Anabolic steroids are a synthetic version of the male hormone testosterone. In it's normal state, testosterone boosts muscle growth. But when it is supplemented with steroids, you have an increase of muscle mass and enhanced endurance.

It is used by athletes to try to have that extra edge over the competition. Steroid side effects include mood swings, depression, roid rage, violence, aggression, hair loss/growth, acne, liver damage and the most severe...cancer.

Steroids provide a quick explosion of muscle mass and endurance, but long term provide an explosion of decreased mental and physical health.

Steroid use in baseball is illegal...and is against the Major League Baseball's rules. Yet some athletes today still resort to steroid use, for the quick gain of fame. It is believed that steroid use in baseball will lead you down the path of fame and fortune!!!...not the right attitude if you ask me!

Some people believe that using steroids in baseball will lead to increased hitting and running performance...due to the increase in strength and endurance that steroids provide.

But the side effects of steroid use in are clear...STEROIDS WILL CAUSE YOU HARM!

Although there has been many suspicions on steroid use in baseball, there is no proof of use of steroids to enhance current records in the record book.

It is not hard to see why some players may have been tempted to the dark side of steroid use in baseball. The pressure of having to keep up your game must be quite immense...But it is clear...STEROIDS CAUSE MORE HARM THAN GOOD!

The short-term effects of the use of steroids in baseball might seem tempting for some, but the long term effects say it all...

THE USE OF STEROIDS IN BASEBALL IS SHAMEFUL, DISHONEST AND DAMAGING!

You will be surprised at how much there is to learn about baseball. Visit Major League Baseball Brainiac - an excellent source for baseball history, facts and information.

For more information about steroids in baseball, check out the Baseball Brainiac page Steroids In Baseball.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Nathan_R_Park



===============
CoachesBest.com
HurricaneTrainer.com
BatAction.com
HandsBackHitter.com
QuickSwingTrainer.com
AdvancedSkillsTee.com
BattingCagesDirect.com
BattingCagesrUs.com
===============

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Ten Tips on How to Identify Who Can Pitch

By John R Di Nicola

Coaching Little League Pitchers

Coaching little league pitchers is every coaches night mare. I will be discussing the level which it is right after T-Ball or coach pitch depending on when the player comes into the league. There are variation of the coaching experience in little league. Regardless of the coaches experience he will be faced with finding pitchers.

Three Types of Coaches:


Has coaching experience and has at least two assistant either moved up from coach pitch or T-Ball
First year coaching but has some experience but never a Head Coach in Little League
Never coached before
Drafted Coach, this is the coach who's team was picked for him and given to him

Each division will have approximately 8 to 12 teams depending on the size of the organization. The majority of the league will be combination of 2 and 3. The larger the division the greater chance there will be one drafted coach

Most leagues have a try out and a draft. You get your players list and first thing you ask yourself is how many pitchers do I have? You go home and call the parents one by one. You have your list of questions:


Has your son or daughter every played before?
How long have they played organized baseball?
What positions have they played?

You might get lucky and have one that has played in another league and has had some experience pitching.

How to identify players who can Pitch


How do they Grip the Ball?
While players are warming up watch how they throw the ball
How they bring their arm back. Is it short armed or fully extended?
Do they fall off to side when releasing ball
How is their follow through?
Do they snap their wrist downward when releasing the ball?
Does the ball go in an Arc or does it go more on a straight line?
How accurate is the throw? Does the receiving player have to move to catch each ball?
Watch their feet see if they stay flat footed and don't move as the ball approaches
Is the player aggressive while playing catch?

There are so many area's to cover when you trying to get your team ready for the first game. While pitching is one of the most important areas of the game you still have to be working on Defense, Hitting, and Running the Bases.

I found that if you work with the pitchers after practice or have a practice just for pitchers and catchers it works best. Pitching is too important to just rush through and give it only 20 minutes twice a week.

http://www.easypitching.com, http://twitter.com/easypitching

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=John_R_Di_Nicola