By Dave Holt
Everyone is a Batting Coach
Ever take notice after the baseball swing at youth baseball games? Listen to what goes on between pitches.
There is often a chorus of oohs and aahhs immediately after a young hitter takes a swing and miss.
If the pitch was a little high or low the chorus gets even louder. And then it begins….
3B Coach Starts the Hitting Clinic
Here it Comes
Usually it starts with the third base coach. I guess they might be the head coach so they take the lead in the hitting clinic.
Have you ever heard any youth baseball coaches use terminology like:
You gotta get your back elbow up!
Don't forget to load.
I told you to wait back on it.
Let the ball get deep, now.
You gotta get some bat speed!
Make it be there now, Don't help em' out.
Let the ball travel.
These baseball coaching points are just some of the many verbal prompts that get poured into a hitters mind during their a-bat.
Plus, I don't think the hitters or the hitting coaches really understand the theory behind all this stuff like, 'Get your back elbow up.' Why do we say it and what does it mean?
"Let the ball get deep!" For a young hitter, what does this really mean?
Now just multiply all this expert advice by 3 or four and what do you expect a hitter to perform like?
First base Coach Helps Out, Too
Harmless Advice, Right?
Not to be out done the 1b coach adds their baseball teaching and batting tips see if they can make the batter even more confused about their
“Hey Freddy.” What are you doing? That ball is up here. You can’t help the pitcher out swinging at all those different pitches way up here.
Now get that back elbow up and ‘load’ and let the ball travel. Come on now hit the ball!”
Baseball Parents Add More Tips for Batting
Parents Want to Protect Their Kids
Not to be left out the expert bleacher creatures baseball parents start adding to the hitting drill.
“Come on Freddy, Be patient and wait for a good one…don’t help out the pitcher.”
I even heard a dad yelling through the backstop fence recently after his young hitter had just popped out to second base.
“What are doing? That is pitiful! No way I’m going to spend all that money on a bat if you are going to swing like that! And he did not mean to be nice at all when he said it.
Baseball Instructions and Batting Tips:
What Other Sport Coaches Between Each Play?
Do you see the tennis coach yelling hitting instructions to their players at Wimbledon?
Do the golf swing coaches holler swing tips before Phil Mickelson tees of?
Ever see the basketball coach demonstrating the shooting stroke before the jump shot or free throws?
We can go on and on. Nobody else in sports does this post baseball swing analysis critique hitting clinic between every pitch except the volunteer youth league baseball coach and parents.
After finishing his professional playing career Dave spent eleven seasons managing in the Red Sox minor league system helping to develop several major league ballplayers. After leaving the Red Sox Dave managed and recruited in the Independent Professional Baseball leagues. He has also coached collegiate wood bat and high school teams. Want to know what to really say to players? His site, coachandplaybaseball.com is a wealth of information for baseball players and coaches of all levels.