Strengths vs. Weaknesses:
Where to Spend Your Time

Written By Charity Butler

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Strengths Vs Weaknesses Where To Spend Your Time

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The 2013 NFCA Convention was absolutely incredible! The best and brightest in the fastpitch world come together annually for this action-packed event.

This  convention featured a talk by University of Florida Head Coach, Tim Walton, entitled “The Working Relationship Between Coaches and Hitters”. His words of wisdom were not focused on the fundamentals of hitting but on communication: communication between hitters and coaches and hitters’ internal conversations with themselves.

Many of his statements were simple, yet quite profound! I will share his thoughts and expand with some of my own.

“Work on strengths, not only on weaknesses.” –Tim Walton

ESPN the Magazine has analyzed high profile athletes, seeking to determine if top level competitors are, as most would claim, over-paid. Through pages and pages of statistical analysis and explanation, the experts concluded that top athletes are actually under, not over-paid.

Rationalizing that someone can be underpaid by $ millions per year to hit a baseball or catch a football sounds absurd. The answer, however, lies in the basic principles of economics: supply and demand.

You see, ESPN Magazine determined, “the more unusual the skill and the harder it is to replace, the higher its price will be.”

No one can consistently execute at the level which top-paid athletes perform. Their skills generate billions of dollars throughout the US and around the world, and no one can consistently do what they do.

The demand for professional sports is ever-increasing and the supply of top athletes is comparatively small. Therefore, top athletes earn top salaries.

Granted, the dollars paid and generated in female athletics are many times laughable compared to equally skilled male competitors, but do not miss the point chasing political rabbits!

Top performing athletes are usually very good at one skill or a set of related skills. A center in the NBA may hang its hat on rebounds and blocks, while a point guard earns his money handling the ball and a 3 guard finds his value in stellar 3-point shooting.

Sure, all of these players can perform all skills required in the game: dribbling, shooting, passing, rebounding, defense etc. NBA players can perform these skills at a comparatively high level. It is definitely valuable to be a well-rounded player and all around athlete. This concept applies to fastpitch softball, as well.

However, the best players have found their niche, their wheelhouse. They have fully developed their strengths.

The best quarterbacks in the world are not simultaneously the best kickers. Each player has his role and has developed his ability in one particular area to its fullest.

As hitters, we sometimes become too perfectionistic. We want every pitch to be our best pitch. We want to be the power hitter, the hitter for high average, a short game player and the base on balls leader… all at the same time! It is as if we want to be the quarterback and kicker all in one.

Yes, fundamentals are important, and yes there is a time and place to develop our weaknesses and improve skills in multiple areas. Ultimately, however, hitters must understand their strengths and develop them relentlessly.

In areas of natural advantage, cultivate those strengths to the point that no one can duplicate them. Even in the world of college recruiting for fastpitch players, “the more unusual the skill and the harder it is to replace, the higher its price will be.” –ESPN Magazine

Focusing on strengths more than weaknesses is counterintuitive but will allow players to increase their price. Hitters who can hit the ball 300 feet may strike out more than those who lead the team in on base percentage, and that is ok!

When hitters can do one thing better than anyone else, they create their niche. They make themselves irreplaceable. Riches are in niches (metaphorically speaking)! Most hitters cannot be the best at everything, but they can work to be better than anyone else at something. That area of strength could be a player’s ticket to great success.

Coach Walton pointed out that when using video analysis, most hitters are looking for mistakes in the video. Hitters can be so focused on their weaknesses that they forget to hone the strengths! When using video, be sure to look for the good in the swing, in addition to the bad.

Visualize and feel the good. File away the good aspects of the swing for recall and mental practice.

“It is not necessary to always work on something [negative],” Tim says. “Sometimes hitters can just get their reps and feel the timing.” This can allow players to fine-tune their strengths and really feel their swings.

Feeling the swing is absolutely necessary! I almost jumped out of my seat when Tim declared, “If they can’t feel it, they can’t fix it”! My Fi Hitting™ System was designed to help players feel it so they can fix it.

Hitting is not about looking like someone else or trying to fit some stereotypical mold. Hitting is about finding each individual player’s best swing. She must know herself, including her strengths and weaknesses. She must find her best swing and feel the thrill of truly turning it loose at the plate.

“If I tell a hitter what to do, they may not be as good. They know themselves better!” –Tim Walton

Absolutely, there is a time and place for coaches to guide, direct and coach, but all too often hitters become caught up doing what they are told. They try desperately to improve their areas of weakness, while ignoring their God-given advantages.

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Pop Flies: Dropping Hands Are NOT The Problem

Written By Charity Butler

Pop Flies Dropping Hands Is Not The Problem

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When interviewing a new hitting student, I ask a series of quick-fire questions to understand as much about each player as possible before working on new hitting ideas or techniques. Most hitters can articulate at least three weaknesses or struggles they possess, and have difficulty recalling any of their strengths.

Players are so constantly told what not-to-do or what to avoid that they become fixated on the negative. Many of my new students describe themselves pessimistically by saying, “I drop my hands a lot.”

Hitting a fastpitch softball is one of the most difficult skills to perform in any sport. The reaction time allotted a hitter from the pitcher’s release to contact with the ball is almost instantaneous. Trying to decipher the hands’ path during this rapid succession of movements is seemingly impossible.

As hitters, thinking too much about our hands is a source of frustration and stress. This causes tension in the mind and body and creates additional problems. To be successful, hitters cannot guide or aim the bat barrel with rigid movements. They must be free to trust the hands and let them fly through the hitting zone.

Further, when the focus in a hitter’s mind becomes, “Don’t drop my hands,” she is mentally practicing what she wants to avoid. Our minds work visually, disregarding the “don’t”. When a hitter hears or internally repeats, “Don’t drop.” What is she seeing in her mind? Dropping her hands!

Dropping and hitting pop flies as a result is a common problem at most every level of play. The solution, however, is quite simple. Dropping the hands is usually a symptom of a different problem: poor posture. Changing a hitter’s posture quite often eliminates or dropping.

Watch this 47 second video for a quick explanation of Punching Posture at Contact:

http://www.ubersense.com/video/view/VAVX6ywt

When hitters feel for themselves the power and consistency generated through a tall, strong and balanced punching posture, they can visualize proper form and work toward achieving it.

Rarely will a hitter drop her hands while maintaining a strong punching posture. Most often, the hands drop as a result of the entire upper body leaning (or dropping) back toward the catcher.

Correcting a posture problem is much less tedious than changing hand movements. Hitters tend to feel the difference in strong and weak posture immediately and can make the adjustment with ease. Once posture is corrected, the hands begin to work more effectively without additional thought or worry.

Another beneficial visual for hitters is what I call, “the pole”. While in her hitting stance, I encourage a hitter to picture in her mind a pole running vertically through her body, from the crown of her head to the dirt or turf beneath. I then challenge the hitter to keep her body in line with the pole throughout her entire swing.

Staying in line with the pole only applies to leaning forward toward the pitcher or backward toward the catcher. A nature body tilt down and in toward the hitting zone is natural and necessary. This tilt, though, will happen naturally.

Much like the idea of punching posture if a hitter can picture, and more importantly feel, staying in line with the pole she is much less likely to drop her hands and hit pop flies.

A focus on punching posture or staying within the pole equips a hitter to picture proper form. As she adopts the new concepts, “Swing like I’m punching,” or “Keep my pole,” she is visualizing a more fundamentally sound swing. She is training her mind to lead the way, so her body executes more effectively.

The top athletes in the world make intentional visualization a part of their regular training routines. We use the same part of the brain to practice mentally that we use when physically performing. Visualization does affect performance, both positively and negatively. The words we repeat and the resulting mental images they create are powerful.

In addition, a punching posture mind-set emphasizes aggression. Although improving as hitters does sometimes require scrutinizing minute details, players often shut down when overloaded with too many particulars to process. Over-thinking creates unwelcome caution. Training cautiously does not equip hitters to maximize their potential.

The best hitters build solid fundamental muscle memory and then execute with reckless abandon. Caution is not welcome! The punching posture mindset allows hitters freedom to read the pitch and react without hesitation.

Concisely, punching posture produces competent and confident hitters!

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Hot Hitting Topic: Linear vs. Rotational Hitting

Written By Charity Butler

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Hot Hitting Topic- Linear vs. Rotational Hitting

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As a hitting instructor, I am regularly asked, “What is your hitting philosophy?” Most of the time, players, parents and coaches who ask this question want to know, “Do you teach linear or rotational hitting?”

As hitters and hitting coaches, we cling tightly to our hitting philosophies. Most people are protective of their approach and their swing. As a player, I certainly did not want anyone to mess up my swing! To me, “mess up” meant changing my philosophy. Although I definitely desired to work hard and improve, I did not want anyone to drastically change my swing or my approach. Most hitters share this same protective impulse.

Before debating hitting philosophies, players must implement certain key fundamentals and practice to the extent that proper mechanics become habit. No two hitters must look the same in the box, but all highly successful hitters share mastery of some common fundamental skills.

Understand that the principles below only apply after a hitter has established a fundamentally sound swing. To answer the initial question, I do not cling to one specific hitting philosophy. As an instructor, my job is to help each hitter find her best swing.

Before discussing the two approaches in detail, we must first understand some basic terms.

Rotational Hitting focuses on Torque. Torque is a turning or twisting force. It is also classified as any force or system of forces that causes rotation.

Linear Hitting prioritizes the need for straight lines when swinging. A line is a set of points that have one dimension-length-but not the dimensions of width or height. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line.

To maximize we need both torque (rotational approach) and proper direction (linear approach). Keeping the bat head level and long through the hitting zone on the same plane as the softball constitutes proper direction. To utilize all the power generated by torque, hitters must properly direct that energy through the ball.

The ball travels from the pitcher toward the catcher on a line. When hitters swing and miss or miss-hit a ball, they have pulled off the line of the ball. Connecting squarely with a pitch is basically finding the line of the ball's core and staying through it. Missing wide, high or low introduces dimensions inconsistent with a line. Lines consist of length only; width and height do not exist in a line.

I have worked with hitters who take a more rotational approach and those who are comfortable with a more linear philosophy. Since hitters from both backgrounds have experienced equally successful results, why must we choose between linear and rotational hitting?

We will individually examine the two seemingly contradictory styles.

Rotational Hitting

The rotational approach generates incredible power. In my experience, however, many rotational hitters also experience decreased consistency. Hitters using this philosophy may log more home runs than the average hitter but usually collect more strike outs, as well.

When swinging with a sole focus on rotation, the bat tends to slice through the hitting zone and cut the extension short. In addition, when the focus becomes too rotational the hitter will tend to spin instead of driving through. This spinning action does generate a great deal of power, but often this power is wasted because it spins the hitter away from the ball. In many cases the head follows and tends to fly out more frequently. The upper body may also open away from the ball. If timing is not perfect, the power created is not actually used.

Linear Hitting

The linear philosophy tends to prize consistency over increased power. Linear approach hitters may tend to post higher batting averages and lower slugging percentages than many rotational hitters.

On the other hand, linear hitting allows a hitter to more efficiently and effectively use the power she generates because her movements are directed through the ball. When executed correctly, a linear swing will keep the hitters barrel in the zone much longer. The head and front shoulder can also stay locked-in on the ball. The compact swing path to contact and the increased extension in the proper direction after contact drastically increase a hitter's consistency.

Conclusion

Hitting gurus can endlessly debate hitting approaches and philosophies. Ultimately, however, it is important that a hitter understands her own swing and feels the necessary adjustments for her as an individual. Using highly technical verbiage can confuse and stifle players. Great hitters possess buy-in. They are not trying to look like another hitter but are working to implement fundamental concepts in a fashion that develops their best swing.

Instead of thinking linear or rotational, think linear and rotational! Tap into the power of rotational hitting and the consistency of the linear approach to maximize the swing. It is possible to increase both power and consistency at the same time. And is better than or!

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Should I Learn To Slap?

Written By Charity Butler

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Should I Learn To Slap

It seems everyone in the fastpitch softball world has questions about slapping: “I am pretty fast. Should I learn to slap?” “I hit left handed, so I need to slap, right?” “Am I too old to start slapping?”

Today we will help determine whether you or your athlete should learn to slap.

First of all, what is slapping? A running slap is performed from the left batter's box. The hitter moves her feet up the box (toward the pitcher) while the pitch is being delivered. She then strategically places the ball on or through the infield and takes off running to first base.

Slapping is part of the “short game” of fastpitch. The smaller diamond and shorter base distances compared to baseball make the short game, which includes both slapping and bunting, a very effective offensive weapon.

Secondly, why do players slap? Slapping is an offensive skill of finesse, rather than power. Based on individual speed capabilities, slappers attempt to place the ball in areas of the field that make it literally impossible for the defense to secure an out. Great slappers boast impressive batting averages and on base percentages.

If a slapper is quick and skilled enough, she only makes outs when she does not execute her plan. The closer left-side position, the running start, a little speed and proper placement of the ball can render a defense helpless.

Now we can address the real question: Who should learn to slap? To provide an appropriate answer, we must consider several criteria.

Speed – Is the player gifted with some natural speed? Is her speed likely to increase or decrease with age?

Young players experience variations in speed and overall coordination as they encounter growth spurts. If the player has had more speed in the past but seems to have slowed due to a growth spurt, the speed may return once her coordination catches up with her body's growth.

If a player is fast or has the promise of being fast in the future, slapping may be a valuable weapon to include in her offensive arsenal. Hitters with no speed advantage will not benefit from slapping.

Regardless of any other factors discussed, hitters with blazing speed can definitely gain an edge by learning to slap. Hitters with average to above average speed may want to consider the other ideal-slapper components below.

Right vs. Left Handed – Does the player naturally hit from the right or left side of the plate?

Natural lefties have an advantage when learning to slap. The learning curve is less steep, so the skill is usually mastered more quickly.

In addition, when a left-handed hitter/slapper steps to the plate, the defense does not know which outcome to expect. The player can utilize the short-game when the defense plays deep and swing away when they shift to cover the slap. This versatility is a powerful advantage.

On the other hand, if a player hits from the right side and only slaps/bunts from the left, the element of surprise is non-existent. The defense will know she is slapping or bunting from the left side, so the extra step gained when the defense must guess her approach does not exist. Players who hit from the right and slap from the left should possess impressive speed.

Let it also be clear that not all left-handed hitters should attempt to slap. Power hitters who have no speed will take time away from hitting practice to develop the skill of slapping. Without decent speed, slapping is ineffective.

Age – How old is the player?

It is never too young for exposure to the skill of slapping. When players are very young it is difficult to know how they will develop. Exposing them to new skills early in their softball experience can be beneficial, but they must be comfortable and possess some solid hitting and bunting fundamentals before devoting focused practice time to slapping. Do not overwhelm them with too much information too soon!

One of the greatest pieces of advice I offer players who are starting their playing careers is to hit from the left side of the plate. In the game of fastpitch, being a left-handed hitter provides many benefits. Unlike the game of baseball, hitting from the right side on the softball diamond does not provide any strategic advantages.

On the other end of the spectrum, players who choose to pursue slapping later in their careers should either be established left-handed hitters or have very impressive speed. Right handed hitters with average speed will not be super-effective slappers. Wasting time learning a marginal skill late in a playing career is not the most effective use of time or focus.

Goals – How long does the player want to stay in the game? What level of play does she desire to achieve?

If a player simply enjoys playing fastpitch softball with no prospects of playing high level travel ball or collegiate softball, she may find slapping a beneficial skill. Younger ages and lower levels of play typically struggle to effectively defend skilled slappers.

Players who desire to compete at a high level must be more focused and efficient with their training time. They should possess outstanding speed or in addition to slapping have the willingness to attempt hitting from the left side.

Is slapping the right fit for you?

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Developing Exceptional Bat Speed

Written By Charity Butler

Developing Exceptional Bat Speed

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Most hitters have the potential to drastically increase their bat speed, but the solution to quick hands is counter-intuitive. Hitters typically attempt to swing harder instead of smarter. Well trained hitters swing smarter and more efficiently by staying “short to the ball”. What does it mean to stay short? To clarify, we must re-visit math class. Do not panic; this one is easy!

Mentally draw the shortest route from point “A” to point “B” below.

A•

B•

If you drew a straight line, congratulations. You just aced my little geometry test! Geometry has proven that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Curvy lines are long and slow. Straight lines are short, quick and most effective for hitters.

As hitters, we want to create a short path for our hands from the starting position in our stance (point “A”) to contact (point “B”). This adjustment will dramatically increase bat speed.

The change is simple but not easy. To understand the concept fully, picture a sparkler attached to the end of the bat. Imagine drawing smoke lines in the air with the sparkler, and consider drawing a straight line from stance to contact.

Now, toss the sparkler image and visualize the bat in a pipe. The pipe is facing the same direction and is at the same angle as the bat while the hitter is in her stance and load positions. From this position, the hitter must pull her barrel out of the pipe without breaking the pipe.

To accomplish this, the barrel must stay loaded (meaning in line with the pipe), and the hands must continue forward with the wrists cocked backward.

If a hitter releases the wrists early by casting her hands or bat away from the body, she will break the pipe. If she drops the hands or barrel, again, she will break the pipe.

If she starts pulling the bat out of the pipe but stops her hands at or before contact, the barrel will end up in front of the hands, and she will break the pipe. The goal is to keep the hands in front of the barrel for as long as possible throughout the swing.

Take a timeout for a quick experiment:

Have the hitter begin her swing in slow motion. Pause the swing at any point while the hands are still in front of the barrel. In other words, the hands are between the barrel and the pitcher. Have her “get strong,” and keep the bat from moving. Then, grab the barrel and gently try shaking the bat.

Note: we do not typically want our hands tight during a swing. This exercise is an experiment designed to make a point, not to teach incorrect mechanics promoting tight hands.

The hitter should then take another slow motion swing but should not stop until extension, so the barrel is between the hitter’s hands and the pitcher. The hitter should “get strong” with her hands. The other player or coach should then wiggle the barrel again.

Does the hitter feel stronger with her hands in front or her barrel in front? If the experiment is conducted properly, she should feel strongest with her hands in front.

Leading with the hands for as long as possible throughout the swing will promote a short bat path which results in quicker hands and a faster bat.

Developing quick hands and maximizing efficiency from stance to contact is challenging! We cannot adequately cover all necessary elements in one article, but the off-season is the perfect time to focus on these more complex skill adjustments.

Now is the time! Start working on your hands and bat path this week. Below are some simple, yet effective drills to help:

Knob Punch—Set up a tall tee so the ball sits just below the level of the hitter’s hands in her stance position. Set the tee on the white chalk line of the batter’s box so the ball sits just inside the hitter’s front foot. The hitter will then pop the back side of the ball with the knob of her bat. The proper motion will result in weak ground balls rolling straight toward the middle of the field. The barrel should stay “in the pipe,” and her hands should move not only to the ball but through the ball. The bat should move more like a pool stick than a softball bat in this drill. This drill helps the hitter feel the proper mechanics during the initial forward movement with the hands and bat.

Ball Catch—Use baseballs or tennis balls for this drill. The hitter should stand in the box without a bat. She should emulate her regular hitting stance and set her hands in a comfortable position. Then, she will tuck her bottom hand (arm closest to the pitcher) into her chest, and her top hand stays in its typical stance position. A tosser, standing 10-15 feet in front of home plate, tosses one ball at the time over the inside corner of home plate. The hitter must catch the ball in line with or in front of her front foot. After 10-12 repetitions, she should switch hands and repeat the steps above. This drill allows hitters to isolate each hand and practice straight-line movements with the hands.

Tall Tee—Increase the tee height, so the ball sits at the very top of the hitter’s strike zone. Set the tee over the middle of the plate and a bit in front of the hitter’s front foot. The goal is to hit line drives up the middle. The simulated high pitch will encourage the hitter’s hands to move straight from stance to contact and will help reduce the muscle memory associated with dropping. If she can hit line drives up the middle from this position, she is doing a pretty good job of throwing her hands forward instead of casting away from the body.

Want quick hands? Work smart!

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Find A Way

Written By Charity Butler

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Find A Way

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The 2013 Women's College World Series Champion, Coach Patty Gasso, was speechless after Game 1 of the Championship Series in Oklahoma City. In a marathon game, both Tennessee and Oklahoma remained scoreless through 10 complete innings.

The game was an epic pitchers' duel until the top of the 11th, Tennessee generated 3 runs to almost certainly ensure the win. Yet, #1 ranked Oklahoma had the final say after mounting an unlikely comeback for a 5-3 victory over Tennessee.

Lauren Chamberlain hit the 2-run, walk-off bomb to end the game in the bottom of the 12th inning. In the post-game press conference Chamberlain was asked about her approach going into the at-bat. She briefly answered the question followed immediately by the words, “I'm so proud of my team. I can't even talk about myself right now. I ‘ m so proud of my team.”

This is a girl who gets it! Apparently the entire OU program truly understands the team mentality. This group of young women played as a unit, and their team approach was absolutely unstoppable.

Coach Gasso said the hitters were just following instructions to, “find your way on.” The OU offensive philosophy in a nutshell: selflessness. No one player was expected to be the hero or win the game by herself. The goal was clear. Get on base. Whatever it takes . . . find your way on!

Executing Oklahoma's offensive approach is not necessarily easy, but it is fairly simple. Hitters throughout the entire lineup should strive to produce good at-bats. They are not to swing for the fence every AB. Hitters should swing at good pitches, take strong confident hacks and find a way on base.

A solid understanding of hitting counts will allow a hitter to follow Coach Gasso's instructions to “find [her] way on”. The hitter is not expected to change her swing according to different counts, but producing good at-bats requires that she change her approach.

To begin, the count is the total number of balls and the total number of strikes thrown at any given time during an at -bat. If the first pitch thrown to a batter is a ball, the count is 1 -0. If the pitcher throws another ball, the count becomes 2-0. If the hitter swings and misses or watches the next pitch for a called strike, the count is then 2-1 .

Four balls in an at-bat, of course, earn a hitter the Walk. Three strikes will send the hitter back to dugout with a big, fat K. Striking out is not a fun experience, but we do survive!

Now, let's think in more advanced terms. To be most effective at producing good at-bats and finding a way on, it is imperative to understand the concepts of early versus late in an at-bat as well as ahead and behind in the count.

Early in the count means during an at-bat, few pitches have been thrown to the hitter. Typically counts with less than 3 balls and less than 2 strikes at the same time, would be situations tabbed early in the count. Example: 2 balls, 1 strike.

Late in the count, is clearly the opposite situation. More pitches have been thrown in the at-bat. Usually the count stands at more than 2 balls or more than 1 strike. Example: 3 balls, 2 strikes or 3 balls, 1 strike.

To be ahead in the count, as a hitter, means the hitter has earned more balls than strikes. Example: 3 balls, 0 strikes or 3 balls, 1 strike.

When hitters are behind in the count, they typically have been awarded more strikes than balls so far in the AB. Examples: 0 balls, 2 strikes or 1 ball, 2 strikes.

Without a proper understanding of counts, batters take the same approach through an entire AB. Some swing out of their shoes every pitch, while others are constantly timid and bent toward second-guessing themselves. Neither of these methods provides a clear game plan for success and neither will increase a hitter's chances of getting on base.

To make the transition from batter to hitter, understanding counts is vital. What is the right approach, and when is it to be used? Here are some quick tips:

Early in the count the hitter should look for her pitch. This does not mean she should only swing at perfect pitches. The hitter should, however, pick pitches she is confident she can hit well.

Hitters are given three strikes for a reason. Early in the count, be more selective. Great hitters do not give away at-bats by unnecessarily swinging early in the at-bat at pitches that do not typically produce good results.

Late in an at-bat, the hitter will find herself either ahead or behind in the count. When ahead, a hitter should keep the same focused and selective approach as when she began her at-bat.

If she finds herself with three balls, she must stay prepared to swing. When the hitter is ahead, she will usually see better pitches to hit, so she must stay ready to pull the trigger. At the same time, however, she must be willing to take ball 4. A walk is a way to get on, so take it!

If the hitter falls behind in the count, she will need to widen her strike zone and hit pitches that may not be her favorite. She will be less selective and more aggressive. Even when behind in the count, the hitter should avoid swinging at junk pitches. Junk pitches are only considered strikes if the hitter swings and misses. They would not be called strikes without a missed swing.

With two strikes, be sure to protect the plate. Never go down looking! If the pitch is close enough to be called a strike, the hitter should be taking a swing. In a two-strike situation, the hitter should stay under control, but she should never slow her swing to try and make contact. Slowing the swing changes timing and mechanics and does not increase the chances of solid contact.

If each hitter does her part, then the team can be successful. If she is only focused on herself … getting a hit . . . hitting a homerun … or making herself look good, then she does not understand the Oklahoma approach. Her team will not be its best, and she will not maximize her potential.

Learn from Lauren Chamberlain, two-time All-American, two-Time WCWS All-Tournament Team Selection, Member of Team USA and College World Series National Champion. Be focused on your team. With team success comes individual success.

Find a way. Find a way to produce great at-bats. Find a way to play for team over self. Understand counts, and find a way to get the job done!

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