Monday, February 11, 2008

Guest Writer #1

Brad Hamilton is the head baseball coach at Bondurant-Farrar High School, located in the central part of Iowa. In 2007, Coach Hamilton won his 200th game taking his team to the Iowa High School State Tournament in Des Moines. As the the tournament's eighth seed, Coach Hamilton's team came within a whisper of defeating the eventual Class 2A state champions. Coach Hamilton is a 2002 graduate of Midland Lutheran College, located in Fremont, Nebraska.

The following is a two part article. The first section deals with indoor hitting drills and their function in the swing process. Many Midwestern coaches will love to look at these tips because indoor space is so limited that time must be used efficiently. If you have any questions, Coach Hamilton can be reached at:

"Indoors Hitting"

Station work is nothing new to coaches; what we have tried to do is give quality swings with a purpose to our players, We set up 11 different stations that emphasize different skills that we teach. These stations fit our needs and allow us to break down the swing. Use any combination that you want most of all adapt these to fit your facility. We have each player paired up and allow 2-5 minutes at each station. The following is a description of stations and the purpose behind each.

STATION #1 Lead Arm Drill
DESCRIPTION: Hitter should use a shorter bat and place top hand ½ way up bat, other hand should be under in front and off to the side tosses balls to different parts of the zone and hitter swings with one arm working on making good contact.
PURPOSE: Emphasize the downward

STATION #2 Back Arm Drill
DESCRIPTION: Same as above – but switch arms using the back arm
PURPOSE: Emphasize the downward

STATION #3 Wall Drill #1
DESCRIPTION: Hitter stands parallel to wall and 1 bat length away from the wall- take normal stance and swing normal a long swing will hit the wall
PURPOSE: Short quick swing

STATION #4 Wall Drill #2
DESCRIPTION: Hitter stands perpendicular to wall with back foot about 4 inches away from wall – take a normal swing if hitter drops the back shoulder the bat will
hit the wall
PURPOSE: Keeping shoulders level

STATION #5 Birdie Drill
DESCRIPTION: Hitter faces a feeder who is the pitcher – feeder throws shuttle cocks as if he is pitching to the
hitter – hitter must stay back and drive birdie back towards the feeder
PURPOSE: Staying balanced

STATION #6 Hip Turn Drill
DESCRIPTION: Hitter will place bat behind back and takes regular stance – takes a stride and thrusts back hip to wall
back foot must squish the bug
PURPOSE: Movement of back leg

STATION #7 Tee #1
DESCRIPTION: We use this as a outside fastball – hitter must practice on going the other way leading with
hands and driving ball the other way
PURPOSE: Opposite field hitting

STATION #8 Tee #2
DESCRIPTION: This is used as a ball on the inside of the plate must turn on ball and hit it hard
PURPOSE: Turning on the ball

STATION #9 Golf Ball Wiffle
DESCRIPTION: Use of golf wiffle balls and broomstick handle feeder will feed balls to different areas of the
strike zone – hitter must hit ball into net
PURPOSE: Eye and hand coordination

STATION #10 Soft-Toss
DESCRIPTION: Use of this as a warm up to live feeder feeds ball to hitter in different areas of the zone hitter hits
ball where thrown.
PURPOSE: Overall swing

STATION #11 Live
DESCRIPTION: Pitching machine will allow more swings – use of live pitching is a must during the season. To emphasize a short quick swing, move the hitter within 40 feet of machine
PURPOSE: Develop a short quick swing and hit ball where it is thrown.

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