- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Fast reaction time helps, but what really makes a good hitter is his ability to process the nuances of a pitcher's throwing motion
1 TUNNEL VISION
From the position of a pitcher's arm and hand, an experienced batter can predict the speed and trajectory of a pitch before it leaves the thrower's fingers.
2 SWING PLANE
The batter cannot alter the plane of his swing in the last 200 milliseconds before the ball arrives—which, for a major league heater, is about half the flight of the pitch.
3 A TURN AT THE PLATE
In order to swing on time, the batter must begin cocking his hips—rotating them toward the rear foot—as soon as the pitcher kicks his leg at the start of his delivery.
4 WEIGHT SHIFT
The batter synchronizes his step with the pitcher's motion and then pushes off his weight-bearing leg to provide much of the power in his swing.