Ignorance is acceptable until it isn’t. There are millions of boys who want nothing more than the opportunity to compete at the collegiate and/or professional baseball levels.
Unfortunately, many of them are working in vain under the well known and unproven mantra: “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.”
I don’t know about you, but hard work makes me tired. Success is based on commitment, discipline and intelligence.
I define commitment as making a promise to yourself, while discipline is doing the things you need to do even when you don’t want to.
Intelligence is understanding what to do and being able to do it.
There are three things that baseball coaches and scouts want you to learn how to do in the fall if you aspire to compete at the collegiate and/or professional baseball levels. Here’s a look at what three coaches I know say:
Alex Wyche, Head Baseball Coach, Redan High School (former Head Baseball Coach at Griffin High School)
- Approach – Going to plate with a plan. Timing pitcher while on deck. Studying the pitcher, during the game and his patterns against others.
- Complete hitter – Work gap to gap. Hit pitch where it’s thrown. Being a complete hitter makes you a tough out for a pitcher.
- Don’t miss your pitch – Be aggressive on hitters counts, early in counts look for your pitch and don’t miss.
Carlton Hardy, Head Baseball Coach, Savannah State University
- Learn that there is no off season – 300 swings a day, five days a week
- Learn the ability to swing with authority on every swing
- Learn to stay ready so they don’t have to get ready
Chip Lawrence, National Cross Checker, San Diego Padres
- Pitch Recognition – The higher up you go, the better the quality of secondary pitches. Pitch recognition and feel for the strike zone awareness go hand-in-hand.
- Ability to hit velocity – Develop the ability to hit quality velocity. Elite hitters can hit quality fastballs. Long swings will not work versus quality fastballs. Pitching machines with velocity or batting practice from shorter distances can help you shorten your swing.
- Hand Eye – There are many different drills and eye training techniques available. You can’t hit what you can’t see. Continue to develop the eyes which will improve eye/hand.
Remember: Intelligence tops being smart.
C.J. Stewart has built a reputation as one of the leading professional hitting instructors in the country. He is a former professional baseball player in the Chicago Cubs organization and has also served as an area scout for the Cincinnati Reds. As founder and CEO of Diamond Directors Player Development, CJ has more than 12 years of player development experience and has built an impressive list of clients, including some of the top young prospects in baseball today. If your desire is to change your game for the better, C.J. Stewart has a proven system of development and track record of success that can work for you.