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Back to Work having your best season ever - Issue #65
March 22, 2010

Back to Work

I'm finally getting back to work at getting you good hitting information.

But now's really the time for you all to get back to FUN! The season is upon us in many areas and right around the corner in many others, so I want to help you be better.

I will divide this into 3 sections (actually a 4th if any of you are interested) which will cover baseball, fastpitch softball and slow pitch. So read the ones you want and ignore the rest, but in some cases hitting is hitting, so you can learn from the others.

I've often wondered if this newsletter wouldn't meet your needs more if I broke it up into 4 - 6 newsletters focusing on each of the sports I mentioned above and others, one on coaching, another on fundraising, et al. If you'd like to tell me your thoughts about this, just hit reply to this e-mail.

As far as that mysterious 4th section, here's a hint: Who do you think the "best hitting coach" (or "best batting coach") is? Type either term (all 3 words) into Google and see who stands out in their search for the best is and if you're interested in learning more about that, read the mysterious 4th section.

Also read it if you'd like your team or league have me coach them on the either the weekend of April 17 & 18th or the weekend of the 24th & 25th. Hint here is you'd need to be near Alephi University in New York.

Slow Pitch

Most of my coaching students come from the youth ranks. Occasionally I'll get high school and college players, but many of the players are 8 - 14, but every once in a while I'll get an adult (either baseball or slow pitch softball).

These last 3 weeks I've been working with a gentleman that's been playing for 20 years or more in the local leagues one - two nights a week.

His wife bought him 4 lessons for his birthday (Good wife!), not to say he was bad, but she saw his frustration when he knew he could hit better.

The 3 things we isolated might be of help to you who play slow pitch softball.

Again, these are things probably learned long ago, but you don't recognize you've drifted into bad habits.

1) Not using his hips enough. I call it "knee to the pitcher". If you have someone watch your swing (or video tape you) do they see a hard turning of the hips into the swing, normally this is caught by seeing if their knee has ended up in the direction of pointing to the pitcher (rather than at the camera or viewer).

You can also observe your teammates and/or other players and generally as a rule the good hitters will have done that and the poor ones won't (have).

2) Really looking at the ball (all the way in to the bat). Since most people at his level rarely strike out they normally are seeing it well enough to hit it, but did you realize you can hit it using your peripheral vision? That means you can and maybe are hitting the ball without really concentrating on the ball and where you're contacting the ball on the bat.

3) Know where you'd like to hit the ball before you ever stand in the batter's box and where the pitch would be for you to hit it there. That means that if it's the meatiest pitch in the world, but it's not the pitch you need to hit it where you want to hit it, then you don't swing at it.

You may say, but we play in a league that starts with the count 1-1. So? The worst is it will be 1 - 2 rather than not hitting the ball well, normally producing an out. Now with 2 strikes I will know what to do if they give me the pitch I want, but I also have a secondary idea of what I want to do with the ball if they go to the opposite area in the strike zone.


I hope everyone knows who Joe Mauer is, because my story for how to get to work for practicing baseball involves following the example of the American League's leading hitter from the Minnesota Twins.

It came to me over the winter and sort of crept up on me and I didn't even realize it.

I sell all kinds of gadgets and videos on my website on how to get better hitting a baseball and I sell a few here and there pretty equally based on peoples' comfort level on what to spend, but this winter the Quickswing that I have on started selling 7 times all the other devices.

Then I realized this was the device that Joe Mauer used as a boy because his dad invented it for him and his brothers to practice on and how one of those brothers runs the company that makes these and sells them.

I asked his brother if Joe still uses it and he was quite honest with me that due to the fact that he's a major leaguer he can normally find someone who will throw him live batting practice, but that he does still occasionally use it, especially on those cold Minnesota nights and days as this is a device he can use with just himself.

Whether you feel like that device is any better than a tee or any others, the takeaway is that practicing your swing over and over is how you'll get good, not just working out when everyone else is.

This was pointed out to me when 2 of the students I had in the past are having their younger brothers come to me and both of the older kids got really good by believing early on what I told them of doing a minimum of 100 swings a day (they both actually did more like 200 each and every day).

Do the same and you'll be on your way to being a great hitter in baseball too.

Go to my webpage if you want to see what I had to say about the Joe Mauer Quickswing. In reviewing this e-mail and checking to see if the links work I just noticed I hadn't updated the page on my thoughts about the quickswing and so it has the old pricing before they added the motorized version, but I decided to leave it the same for my readers until after the e-mail reading time is up, so if you decide to get it from me you'll get the newer battery operated motorized version for the price of the gravity fed one that I show on the website. So check out now if you're at all curious about how Joe Mauer got so good at hitting.

Fastpitch Softball

For the girls I'm going to tell you the answers to 2 questions I received.

1) Very often, my daughter hits the pitched ball and the contact of the ball to the bat causes a painful stinging to her hands? What causes this problem?

Here's my answer: Traditionally this is caused by not hitting the ball on the "sweet spot". The cheaper the bat the more pronounced this is.

The "sweet spot" is defined as that area about 2-3" down from the top extending 1-4" (normally the more expensive the bat the longer the sweet spot) where the bat makes the optimal connection with the ball, where there is no vibration given to the bat. It's being off that spot that creates vibration (the stinging of the hands), either too high or too low, and normally creates weak hits, too.

Remedies can be as simple as wearing batting gloves or getting rubber items that either attach to the thumb or go over the knob of the bat. But the best way is to have her work hard at practicing a perfect swing so that she is hitting the ball in the sweet spot every time.

I have multiple pages on the website on how to swing the best and how to practice.

2) Are baseball swings and fastpitch swings different? How would you coach a fastpitch hitter differently than a baseball hitter?

Here's my answer: It really depends on who you talk to on the answer to that question. That's why I produced a video on that very subject, the two swings coaches teach the advantages and disadvantages

In other words some coaches teach they're the same and others that they're different. I've taught it both ways due to the different goals the kid had.

See the page listed above or start here to start learning about the 2 swings and make the choice that's right for you.

Look at a Fastpitch Website I built for Phil Bruder, a softball hitting coach out of Long Beach Calif.

The reason I'm telling you about this website is for the fastpitch players in that area to possibly take advantage of Phil's teachings. He's not for everyone, but for a few he's the best.

But it also ties into my next section:

the Mysterious 4th Section

One of the things I alluded to earlier is that I could help you with your hitting in either baseball or fast or slow pitch softball if you're near Queens, New York because one of my sons will be finishing his master's thesis and presenting it on April 21st, so if you would like me to help your team or league, e-mail me or call me (see below for number) to see if we can arrange a time either before or after that date.

The reason I've not written in so long is I've been busy helping other people putting up websites for their businesses.

So if you're a business man, or have thought of doing a website (or just plain curious what I'm going to say) read on, if not this will be targeted to them and to the rest of you you can ignore the rest and I'll see you next time when I should have some really good stuff.

So if you're still reading you may have noticed from my google search exercise above, I'm really good in getting top rankings in Google which helps business owners finish high in their local areas. For Phil (see Fastpitch section above), I made that at the end of the year and he already ranks #7 for "hitting coaches Long Beach" (in other words, he's on the front page) in that short amount of time. I designed the graphics, I wrote the web copy (and I did all of my own in the 160 pages plus of my website), posted it up, plus applied all of the SEO techniques to get him ranked (as I did with mine and other websites as well).

So if you'd like to see if I can help you with your website, feel free to e-mail me or call me.

If you're interested in doing your own website work, I can tell you what I recommend in building my own website and the program I use to make the headers like I made for Phil and other clients of mine. Just follow the links below for those recommendations.

This is the website program I use to help write this newsletter, write my pages and host the site.

My Header Software is really cool and it's free!

Thanks for reading this hitting newsletter.

Again, if you have any questions or comments you can call me at 805-642-5827 or write to me via e-mail.

To see other hitting tips in past newsletters, go to the past issues of my hitting newsletter page.

Welcome to you who are new to my hitting e-zine.

Thanks for reading and talk to you next time.

Coach Andy

6801 Dove St. Ventura, CA 93003


Coach Andy Collins has been helping players achieve their goals in softball and baseball for over 35 years. He's an advisor to national teams and can help you be a better hitter. He offers free information on his website and through free e-mail hitting lessons and has just introduced 4 new videos on teaching fielding, throwing, and running hitting practices along with another hitting video discussing and demonstrating how to hit great with either the rotational or linear hitting methods.

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