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The biggest misconception about hitting in the majors

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Postby Mr Irrelevant » Tue Jun 06, 2006 8:10 am

acsguitar wrote:In High School I faced Seth McClung.
.


You must have batted at least .400 against him.
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Postby mak1277 » Tue Jun 06, 2006 9:06 am

giants8307 wrote:It's tough to believe every major league hitter is a guess hitter.


I heard Ted Williams and Tony Gwynn discuss hitting on TV a number of times and this was one of their main areas of disagreement. Ted said you had to guess and Gwynn said he never/rarely guessed.

I do think, though, that there is probably more guess hitting going on today than ever before. The emphasis on HRs and the acceptance of huge strikeout totals makes guess hitting almost obligatory. Guess and swing from the heels.

I think the most amazing comment I've read/heard/seen about hitting in the majors is that a batter must start his swing before the pitcher releases the ball in order to hit. That even sounds impossible...but it's true.
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Postby Athe'eTeddy » Tue Jun 06, 2006 9:18 am

mak1277 wrote:
giants8307 wrote:It's tough to believe every major league hitter is a guess hitter.


I heard Ted Williams and Tony Gwynn discuss hitting on TV a number of times and this was one of their main areas of disagreement. Ted said you had to guess and Gwynn said he never/rarely guessed.

I do think, though, that there is probably more guess hitting going on today than ever before. The emphasis on HRs and the acceptance of huge strikeout totals makes guess hitting almost obligatory. Guess and swing from the heels.

I think the most amazing comment I've read/heard/seen about hitting in the majors is that a batter must start his swing before the pitcher releases the ball in order to hit. That even sounds impossible...but it's true.


perhaps i am completely incorrect, but i recall hearing a Teddy quote that seems to suggest that it would be Mr. Gwynn arguing that a hitter would have to guess.

it was something like: someone asked Ted if it was harder to hit a fastball, curvball, etc... and Mr. Williams responded with something like, i don't know, they all look like they're hanging on a string in front of home plate, for me.
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Postby mak1277 » Tue Jun 06, 2006 9:19 am

Athe'eTeddy wrote:
mak1277 wrote:
giants8307 wrote:It's tough to believe every major league hitter is a guess hitter.


I heard Ted Williams and Tony Gwynn discuss hitting on TV a number of times and this was one of their main areas of disagreement. Ted said you had to guess and Gwynn said he never/rarely guessed.

I do think, though, that there is probably more guess hitting going on today than ever before. The emphasis on HRs and the acceptance of huge strikeout totals makes guess hitting almost obligatory. Guess and swing from the heels.

I think the most amazing comment I've read/heard/seen about hitting in the majors is that a batter must start his swing before the pitcher releases the ball in order to hit. That even sounds impossible...but it's true.


perhaps i am completely incorrect, but i recall hearing a Teddy quote that seems to suggest that it would be Mr. Gwynn arguing that a hitter would have to guess.

it was something like: someone asked Ted if it was harder to hit a fastball, curvball, etc... and Mr. Williams responded with something like, i don't know, they all look like they're hanging on a string in front of home plate, for me.


No, Ted was definitely a guess-hitter. He even advocates guess-hitting in his instructional book.
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Postby johntudor » Tue Jun 06, 2006 9:23 am

WittyC wrote:I remember reading about how Beltran uses that machine that fires tennis balls with different numbers and colors at 120 MPH. Then Beltran would call out the number/color as it came towards him to help improve his pitch recognition.
That's incredible...
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Postby josebach » Tue Jun 06, 2006 10:05 am

I hardly think it's the "biggest misconception". I think good hitters do both. Early in the count, you can afford to look for a pitch. Once you have two strikes on you, however, you have to protect the plate... especially when runners are in scoring position.
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Re: The biggest misconception about hitting in the majors

Postby rainman23 » Tue Jun 06, 2006 12:32 pm

johnsamo wrote:...for most Major league hitters, when they get a hit, it's either because they guessed the pitch and or location correctly or just got lucky and stuck the bat out there on a pitch they guessed wrong on....


You're making some interesting points, but you carry it a little too far here. If you amended it a little to, "when the best pitchers have both the fast ball and offspeed stuff working" I'd buy it. Every major league pitcher isn't that dominant though, and pitchers don't always have their A game going.
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Postby johnsamo » Tue Jun 06, 2006 6:30 pm

Ted Williams was always looking to hit it hard so he needed to guess more because he's got to make that swing-or-not-swing decision faster than guys like Boggs, Gwynn and Ichiro, who can be a bit more "see the ball hit the ball" because they can take another extra microsecond before they swing since they're just out to make contact.

That's what made the Bonds of a few years ago so superhuman. He could wait that extra microsecond like a slap hitter can, but he still swung hard.
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Postby silverZ » Tue Jun 06, 2006 7:04 pm

You can sit on a certian pitch and/or location if you're ahead in the count. If you do it with 2 strikes thats when you get k'd looking by a fastball at your knees or a curveball breaking across the middle of the plate.
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Postby tgalv » Tue Jun 06, 2006 10:58 pm

i disagree with the whole premise of the post. obviously there is more guessing/sitting on of pitches in the majors than when you played high school baseball, but it is not all about guessing pitches and locations. it might be hard for me or you to hit 95 high heat but these guys are the best in the world and have been playing against the best in the world ever since they were young.
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