One of my common statements I try to get across to ballplayers when it comes to hitting a baseball is, “Every inch counts.”

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It takes continual adherence to the little things, both physical and mental, to prevent big problems and help hitters reach their potential. Of course, it takes an astute coach (you) to notice these things. It also helps to experiment some with hitters to see what works best because there is no one way fits all for every batter, if the swing fundamentals exist.

Following are some essential baseball hitting tips to stay on top of while remembering one inch can make a difference of connecting on the sweet spot of the bat or not.

Fundamental Baseball Hitting Tips

  • Correct set-up to home plate with athletic balance. Inches too close or far cause incorrect swing path or stepping out or in too much.
  • Even stance with head and eyes remaining as still as possible throughout the swing. Head moving too many inches in any direction is not conducive to good contact.
  • Hands back, shoulder height and ready as when ready to punch something. Not getting the hands back enough can cost with a lack of power, while hands too far back can cause a long swing and quickness to the ball.
  • Weight shifts back as pitcher begins delivery home, with the knob of bat pointing down and back towards catcher’s feet or knees.
  • Front foot leads forward movement with controlled, direct stride, as weight begins to shift towards ball. Too much movement back or no movement is trouble.
  • Eyes intensely tracking ball from pitcher’s hand to contact area. Having the eyes focused an inch or two from the correct release point is not good for timing.
  • Back elbow stays close to body as it moves forward and as hands form a palm-up palm-down position to and through contact; wrists roll after complete arm extension. Casting the bat out (reaching) is a main hitting issue.
  • Head is down and over back hip as hips fully rotate open and as bat finishes around shoulder level. Allowing the head to move forward over the front leg inhibits power.
  • Ultimate balance on finish to make sure one can get out of the box and have not over swung. Falling just a few inches after swinging can lead to an out instead of a hit.

With all the physical and mental challenges, there is no wonder that hitting a baseball is one of the most difficult things to do in sports and often referred to as a game of inches.

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