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Welcome to the official blog of the Baseball Parent Guide. Our free baseball articles and daily post provide baseball parents with valuable drills and tips to help improve your home, team and backyard baseball practice. Our archive has hundreds of informative and useful articles and posts related to all aspects of baseball training, practice and skill development. Make sure to save this site to your favorites for future visits. Happy Hitting and Good Luck to Your Team!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Baseball Hitting - The Basics to Success

By Chris Moheno
Baseball hitting is a lot more then just swinging a bat around and hoping to get lucky. When it comes to learning how to hit a baseball, you have to remember that there is a lot more skill, technique, and focus needed then meets the eye.

There has to be a lot of practice hours put in or you will never be able to swing the bat like some of the great names in baseball history. By practicing hard and keeping a few simple tips and hints in mind you will be able to swing like a pro in no time at all.

Remember though, besides hard-core technique, there is also a lot of room for the practice of visualization and positive thinking in your baseball training, which has proven to help many people.

If you have been swinging for a while but just want to learn to hit better the first thing you need to do is to avoid any major changes in your stance. Even though this seems a little bit backwards considering you are trying to hit better, it is an important move. Many players, even the not so great ones, naturally develop certain stances in order to make up for something such as a dominant right eye. Before you make any drastic changes make sure that you figure out why it is that you do what you do. If there is no reason for the stance, the grip, or the swing that you have other then laziness or lack of knowledge then it is time to get to work on that.

Time to get ready for the hit. If you do not have a lot of experience with this then make sure that you have a bat you are comfortable with and get up to bat. Get in a proper fitted stance. Keep your chin tucked in along with your front shoulder. Make sure that your head is completely turned so that you are able to clearly see the pitcher. Stay off of the heals of your feet by remaining on the balls of your feet. And most importantly, keep your head still. Even though you may find that over time your stance will change, it is extremely important to keep those simple things in line. Always stay on the balls of your feet and never take one eye off of the pitcher. These are the rules no matter what stance you adopt.

Time to select the right ball to hit. Even though you may be willing to swing at anything that comes at you it is important that you do not. Not every pitch is a good pitch. Be selective and be patient about it. There is no reason to go in overly aggressive. Just make sure that you are concentrating on putting the ball in play and use the entire field to do it. As you are waiting for the ball to come your direction you will want to carefully think through what it is that you are trying to do at the plate.

Imagine and envision yourself striking the bat against the ball. Picture complete batting success before you even have the chance to hit the ball in real life.

The last step would be to take all of the skills you have learned and hit the ball. Make sure that you swing with force and that you follow through with it. Imagine where in the field you are sending the ball and see what happens.

If you feel you need more help with your baseball hitting then you need to seek out some one on one help. Having someone right next to you through your baseball training is always a great thing to have. There are also many DVD's that are being sold in order to perfect your skill. Watching the exact technique played out is a great way to make sure that you are doing everything you should be doing.

Keep practicing and then one day everything will suddenly click and you will be hitting every ball that comes your way.

Chris Moheno has a long time passion for sports in general and for baseball coaching more specifically. His goal is to spread the word about effective non-fluff baseball training techniques for both more experienced and young baseball players, to help them perform better during the game.

Discover more about baseball training secrets on

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Shop for your baseball coaching needs including baseball training aids, training videos, and other coaching supplies. Check out the Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting machine by SKLZ at

See the “Original” Rotational Hitting Machine at Are you looking for the perfect trainer to teach proper timing and swing mechanics? You can stop looking and go to

Players develop incredible bat speed and confidence when they regularly use the Quick Swing Trainer. See it at See the world’s most advanced batting tee at

Are you looking for a great batting cage at discount prices? Are you considering building your own backyard batting cage and training center? If so, you should visit now!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Field of Dreams - Reviving Back Yard Baseball

By Michael Sakowski

When my son David started playing in a youth baseball league, we wanted to get in some extra practice. We live in a rural area far from a park, so we practiced in our large back yard. As batted balls kept rolling into the high grass surrounding our yard, I took action and began mowing the high grass down to minimize the number of balls lost. Mowing led to cutting brush, which led to cutting small trees, which led to installing netting extending 15 feet up to stop hard hit balls. Before we knew it, we had our very own Field of Dreams!

We now had a place where 4 of my kids and myself could play a game of "first base" after supper on just about any summer evening. In the game of "first base", each batter hits the ball, but they only run to first base. They return to home and keep batting until they get 3 outs. Then, the next batter is up. The non-batting kids play first base and outfield. As dad, I am all-time pitcher except for when I am up to bat. Also as dad, I bunt the ball to the pitcher or infield and try to get to first base before being tagged out.

In another game appropriately called 2 bases, suitable for 6 to 8 players, a regular baseball game is played except 2 bases are used instead of 3 due to the small number of players. Sometimes, I will be all-time pitcher for the kids and also serve as umpire to make a final unbiased ruling on disputed plays. My kids love this game and it even beats out their flashy video games, something tough to do in this day and age!

My father-in-law, visiting friends and family, and neighbors have joined in for these backyard baseball games. These games have been a blast! Our new backyard ball field truly has proven to be a "Field of Dreams".

Michael Sakowski works full time and volunteers as an assistant coach for his son's youth league baseball team. He also has researched effective youth baseball methods and has published a website, Youth Baseball Basics that provides helpful information to first time baseball players and first time baseball parents.

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Monday, September 28, 2009

Who Makes the Best Youth Baseball Bat? Find Out Here

By Brandon Bland

Many parents want to know what the best youth baseball bat is for their child. Although there are many different brands of bats I would recommend, there is one that has particularly stood out to me consistently as I hear parents talk. There was a kid in our local Little League that hit over 20 home runs with this bat this summer. The company is fairly new, and but they are starting to really make a name for themselves, especially in the youth bat market. You don't see or hear as many adult or college ballplayers using these bats, but they are the talk of the town in the youth leagues.

The company's name is called Combat. That's right, Combat. If you've been around the game of baseball for any length of time, you still may not have heard of this brand of bat. I remember back in my Little League days, it seemed that everyone had either had an Easton or a Louisville Slugger TPX bat. Occasionally you might see an old, rusty Worth. But there are so many new bats coming out on the market today, and I have to admit, some of them are giving Easton and Louisville a run for their money. Not that they don't continue to make quality bats today, because they certainly do. But many companies are producing bats that compete with the two legacy bat companies, and Combat is one of them.

Combat uses composite material technology. In fact they are known for being somewhat of the pioneers of the composite bat industry. Composite material consists of a fiberglass material mixed with a resin to bind it together. Composite bats are rivaling the standard aluminum alloy bats that you may have known up to this point in time. Most companies are offering a mixture of aluminum, composite, and some are even making hybrid models consisting of composite handles, and aluminum barrels. Combat is strictly 100% composite material.

I keep hearing stories of kids popping balls up and still hitting them off the outfield walls with these bats. I do get concerned that the performance of modern day's bats are getting a little bit too ridiculous. I'm a firm believer that the game should be decided between the pitcher and hitter, not a piece of equipment. But I cannot deny what I hear about the Combat bats. Kids that use them are getting results. So there you have it. If you want to know what seems to be a consensus about what the best youth baseball bat is, I would have to say it's Combat. Read more about Combat bats here.

Brandon Bland is the webmaster of Baseball Equipment Review, a site devoted to informing ballplayers of the quality of today's baseball equipment so they can make informed decisions about their purchases.

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Baseball Dealz Ebay Store & - Online coaching super store.

Saturday, September 26, 2009 We specialize in complete cage and frame packages that provide you with a complete setup at a low price.

Friday, September 25, 2009

10 Tips to Make the High School Baseball Team - Fielding Neglect

By Jack Perconte

Baseball players usually love to hit and getting kids to practice their hitting is usually not difficult. Getting ballplayers of any age to want to work on their fielding skills is often a different story. Subsequently, many kids reach the high school team and get cut from the team. They are perplexed when they do not make the high school team because they have always been good hitters, with many of them being top notch travel team ballplayers. The reason for their failure to make the cut is that they are one dimensional ballplayer who can only hit. At some point in their young careers they failed to recognize the importance of fielding, neglected that aspect of the game and fell behind to the point where their importance to a team was limited.

As baseball followers know, there can only be one designated hitter in a lineup and coaches need to have nine defensive position players. Because of this fact, coaches look for kids in a tryout who are multi-dimensional, meaning they can hit, run, throw and field. With this in mind, parents and coaches should stress the importance of being proficient in every aspect of the game so they are not left out in the cold come tryout time. Following are some tips for parents and coaches to help players work on their fielding skills with the understanding that the earlier (age) they teach these the better:

1. Use a softer ball - this allows the coach to challenge players with more speed and game like balls.

2. Repeat, use a softer ball - this gives players the assurance that they will not get hurt when hit by the ball and will promote good fielding mechanics of getting in front of ground balls and under fly balls for the above mentioned reason.

3. Like everything in sports, development of skills is dependent on correct fundamentals. With fielding this involves good footwork. Practicing the correct footwork from approaching the ball all the way through the throw is necessary, with consistency of action the key to success.

4. Begin fielding practice with hitting or throwing slow ground balls so fielders. This will promote aggressive fielders by having to charge the ball.

5. Teach kids to catch balls correctly - glove hand only (one handed) for balls they reach for and two hands for balls within their body.

6. Avoid practicing ground balls on a smooth surface (indoors) whenever possible. Players can get away with incorrect fundamentals on a smooth surface because hops are always true and predictable. If a smooth surface is only option, roll many balls very low to ground to promote keeping glove and body low for good fielding mechanics.

7. During team batting practice, position non-hitting players and have them play balls off bat as if in a game. This is especially helpful for outfield practice to get the real feel for judging fly balls.

8. Teach players to get into the correct "ready" position according to the position they are playing.

9. Try to devote at least half of practice time on fielding drills and game like situation practice. Knowing what to do in a game (i.e. where to throw ball, what base to cover) on defense is very important.

10. Remind kids of the importance of throwing, both arm strength and accuracy, to fielding success. A play is usually only half over with a catch, completing a play with a good throw is necessary.

Former major league baseball player, Jack Perconte gives baseball hitting tips and batting practice advice for ballplayers of all ages. His baseball hitting lessons advice can be found at Jack is the author of two books, The Making of a Hitter and Raising an Athlete - his parenting blog can be found at

Article Source:

Shop for your baseball coaching needs including baseball training aids, training videos, and other coaching supplies. Check out the Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting machine by SKLZ at

See the “Original” Rotational Hitting Machine at Are you looking for the perfect trainer to teach proper timing and swing mechanics? You can stop looking and go to

Players develop incredible bat speed and confidence when they regularly use the Quick Swing Trainer. See it at See the world’s most advanced batting tee at

Are you looking for a great batting cage at discount prices? Are you considering building your own backyard batting cage and training center? If so, you should visit now!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

A Message to Baseball Parents from Nick Dixon, President of Nedco Sports


Thanks for visiting our website. Your concern for your child's sports success is evident. Your child is fortunate to have a parent that cares so much about their success! I sincerely want your child to experience success, just like you!

Our company is founded upon the principle that every player is a winner when they reach their maximum potential as a player.

If you feel that your child has the potential to be a better hitter, I know that we can help! If you want to give your child every advantage possible when competing with the opposition or with peers for a team position, we can help! Our training equipment and training "Know-how" can help you help your child!

Maybe your job or work restricts the amount of time you are allowed to spend helping your child. If this is true, I want you to know that we offer the best home training equipment available today!
The best and most efficient trainer we sell is the BatAction Hitting Machine. It produces incredible results faster than anything else. It carries our "Success and Satisfaction or Money-Back" offer. You can not go wrong when you buy this great machine! We have thousands of collegiate hitters playing today that grew up hitting this fine machine! It has been helping young hitters improve for 10 years!

If you have questions about the BatAction Machine, please call our customer support, toll free number, 1-877-431-4487.

Happy Hitting,

Coach Nick
Nedco Sports

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Pitching Mechanics - Become a Robot on the Mound

By KC Andrus

Alright, so you want to become a robot on the mound. Pitcher's have control over everything that happens on the field, in a lot of regards they are the most important people on the field. Now, everyone enjoys watching a finesse pitcher think his way through a lineup and get people out, but the best way to become a consistent pitcher that consistently gets outs is to throw hard. It is true that certain people have naturally gifted, golden arms but it is also true that everyone can improve their velocity by tweaking some things within their throwing motion.

Pitching mechanics are a living, breathing thing and the most important thing to accomplish within your windup is to establish consistency. The first thing you want to is to find the most comfortable spot on the rubber. Once that is out of the way you are going to want to keep things as simple as possible and try to keep everything going towards home plate. That means take a short, straight step back and then go straight to your balance point. When you reach your balance point you should be able to maintain pretty good balance, don't worry about whether your toe is pointing down or anything like that just make sure you are balanced.

When you land you should be a little more than shoulder width apart. Then it is vital that you fully extend your arm forward and release the ball out in front with a quick flicking motion in your wrist. All of the top power pitchers implement these things into their motions and it not only builds power but also improves command.

Be sure to use all these basic tips to help improve your throwing motion. If you really want to improve your velocity on the mound and add 10 mph to your fastball be sure to follow the link below for all the best professional tips you can get:

Pitching Mechanics.

Article Source:

Shop for your baseball coaching needs including baseball training aids, training videos, and other coaching supplies. Check out the Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting machine by SKLZ at

See the “Original” Rotational Hitting Machine at Are you looking for the perfect trainer to teach proper timing and swing mechanics? You can stop looking and go to

Players develop incredible abt speed and confidence when they regularly use the Quick Swing Trainer. See it at See the world’s most advanced batting tee at

Are you looking for a great batting cage at discount prices? Are you considering building your own backyard batting cage and training center? If so, you should visit now!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The BatAction Batting Machine - The perfect off-season swing trainer

The BatAction Hitting Machine is the Original Rotational Hitting Machine. The BatAction Machine is a great baseball training device for baseball players of all ages and ability levels. The BatAction Machine has an innovative patented design that has a ball suspended horizontally. This simple design makes learning to hit easy, simple and safe. When a player hits the BatAction Ball, the ball is driven forward and around the machine. The machine then stops the ball and returns it to the player. The horizontal patented design of the machine suspends the ball in mid-air allowing the ball to react to bat contact like a real baseball or softball. The player can hit the ball moving or wait until the ball stops. The batter has ample time between swings to reset and prepare for the next swing. The Bat Action Machine allows the batter work at a comfortable speed and pace. There is no need for another person. The batter has to do nothing but swing the bat. The Bat Action Machine does everything else. These are no balls to gather, no balls to chase and no balls to pick up. There are no levers to press, balls to toss, or pedals to step on. The Bat Action is absolutely 100% energy efficient and it is so much fun to hit! It's no wonder; the Bat Action Machine is one of the most popular and best selling baseball training machines ever!

The BatAction Baseball Training Machine offers 5 great benefits:

1. The BatAction Machine has a large circle of ball movement - This large path of ball movement allows the batter to see, hit and track the ball before and after each swing. The BatAction ball movement closely simulates live pitching!

2. The BatAction Machine allows the batter to read swing contact. The ball is suspended in mid-air without cables, string, or ropes. This unique patented design allows the ball to react to bat contact much like a real ball. The batter receives instant feedback as to the quality and power of every swing. The batter can immediately read the ball after contact to see if the ball hit was a line drive, ground ball or fly ball. This instant feedback is extremely useful and beneficial to rapid skill improvement and bat speed development.

3. Every swing is a challenge - The BatAction Machine features a moving ball with adjustable speeds. Players really love the challenge and fun of seeing and hitting a moving ball. The harder a player hits the ball, the faster it will return. This ball movement keeps the batter challenged and motivated to practice more and more.

4. The BatAction Machine fast moving ball makes every swing a challenge - The BatAction Machine features a moving ball with adjustable speeds. Players really love the challenge and fun of seeing and hitting a moving ball. The harder a player hits the ball, the faster it will return. This ball movement keeps the batter challenged and motivated to practice more and more.

5. The BatAction Machine is a great trainer for planned or impulse training - The BatAction is often used as a hitting station for team training. It is great for these planned activities. But, one of the benefits that makes it one of the most popular home trainers ever, is the fact that it can be set up as a hitting station in the backyard. This makes the BatAction Machine always available to a hitter for fun and recreational use. These impulse workouts can be done alone, even when Dad or Mom is not at home. This is why the Bat Action Machine is often called the Backyard Basketball Goal for baseball and softball players. It is so much fun to hit that kids spend hours and hours of their free time hitting the fast moving ball. These fun workouts are the reason that BatAction Machine owners are some of the most dominate hitters in the game today.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Baseball Training - An Off-Season Plan For Hitters

By John Peter Pero

1st Things First!

Commit to having a plan. With a plan, you have direction.

With direction, you get more done in less time and are more apt to get results.which makes you want stick with your plan.and repeat it even more.which gets you better quicker.get it?

But.what do I plan?

My summary is to always work on your weak points.but let's mix the fun stuff in as well. It's off season, you know it's important, but this is supposed to be fun. right!

Here's a great idea for this time of year:

Try to hit at a home training station with a batting tee or (for more fun) with a soft toss machine and get into a batting cage as often as you can during the cold and off-season months.

Better yet.use your plan to decide what to practice & how to accomplish your goals ( of your goals is to accomplish more with less time).

It is a game that we are's the game you chose, so why not make up your own practice rules!

Here's some examples & ideas:

Divide everything you do into 10 swings with a purpose.

Round 1 - Begin with hitting to the opposite field.count your successes.out of 10 (this might simulate driving in runners on base)
Round 2 - Take 10 swings up the middle - just for focusing on a target.count your successes.out of 10
Rounds 3, 4 etc. examples Make it up. play games best out of 10. Some examples: * Hitting a long fly ball to score a runner from 3B (how many runs can you drive in. out of 10) * # of hard hit balls. out of 10 * # of ground balls. out of 10 * # of sac bunts. out of 10 * # of clean base hits. all out of 10 swings

Lather, Rinse & Repeat

And, of course, you can have a 2nd round on any of these ideas to see how you improve. Keep your own "scorecard" on a clipboard complete with dates and your results. Add a buddy and compete against each other.make it 9 innings (9 specific "tests" or a World Series best of 7) where the winner of each test chooses the next test.

I'm just making up these examples as I am writing, you do the same.

Just note that the most important points are:

Get a plan (one that is you will want to do it regularly).
Use these games as practice tools.
Compete with yourself or other players.or even Dad.
Make up your own games.and compete, whether it's against yourself, your Dad or a teammate. Just do it right or not at all.

Remember to plan your work and work your plan.In other words, stay focused! It's true in school, business, baseball and life in general.

Baseball tips & youth baseball equipment, training aids & instruction! It's all here for baseball coaching of pitchers & hitters, little league to high school.

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Sunday, September 20, 2009

Easing the Anxiety of Tryouts in Youth Sports

By Marty Schupak

Imagine you are being called upon for the first time in your life to perform a sport to the best of your ability. In addition, you have to do this in front of 6-12 men holding clipboards.

Not the most relaxing atmosphere. For better or for worse this is what coaches do for the day that is known as tryouts. The anxiety of these tryouts can affect the performance of some young players. Many times it is not only the players that are anxious, but the parents too. Often, they can be worse than their kids.

I'm involved in youth baseball so I see it from this one sport. I am also in touch with numerous sports league commissioners around the country and hear how most of them approach these tryout days.

In our baseball league, on tryout days, parents accompany their kids and register them for the tryouts. The league board member running the tryouts will usually take four kids at a time on the field. He will then hit grounders to each one, showing the player's infield skills, before moving on to the next skill. This system continues in the outfield and then hitting, running and pitching. While this is happening, the coaches and their assistants are usually on the third-base line rating each skill on a number system.

Remember that the fear of failure is an athlete's worst enemy. One of the things the players trying out should be told is that they will be judged only on their successes and not from anything they do wrong. Isn't this true? If a player gets five swings and hits two over the fence but misses the other three, the coaches will usually judge or rate the player on the balls hit over the fence.

We also speak to the parents and explain the same thing. A lot of times the anxiety the kids bring to tryouts can be traced back to the parent. Even at the earliest age, parents are anticipating such things as their kid being the starting point guard or, even further down the road, a scholarship athlete.

Short warm-ups for each group also help. When one group is on the field another coach can lead the "on deck" group with some running and stretching that help the players to relax.

And remember that laughter is one of the best medicines for tense, performance-type situations. Many coaches will argue that in sports tryouts, they are actually looking to see how they handle stress. I'm not sure if this is the best theory, especially in youth sports when we are trying to keep kids involved and not drive them away. I like the idea of trying to get the young players as relaxed as possible.

A good friend of mine who oversees a very competitive basketball program also likes to have players trying out to be in a relaxed atmosphere, giving them the best chance to be successful. He will get the players together and will tell them that hustle and rebounding are how the coaches rate players in their tryouts, and not to be concerned too much about missing outside shots or a lay up. Right away, this takes the pressure off the player about making all their shots.

No matter the sport, there are going to be players who get anxious on the thought of tryouts. Coaches and leagues need to accommodate--but not baby--young athletes so they can show their skills. As they get older, they'll learn that there is positive and negative anxiety and how to cope with tryouts as well as games. But with young age groups, let's make the tryouts a good experience for the player so they continue to play sports.

Marty Schupak, President of the Youth Sports Club, has coached youth sports for 21 years and has run more than 1,500 youth sports practices. He is the creator of 22 sports instructional videos including the best selling "Championship Soccer Drills" and "The 59 Minute Baseball Practice." He is also author of the popular book, "Youth Baseball Drills." For samples of his videos, go to Contact him at

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Friday, September 18, 2009

Building a batting cage is the ultimate investment

Building a batting cage is the ultimate investment in a player's hitting success. There is absolutely nothing else that has a more positive effect and than offers greater benefits than building a batting cage for your player or team.

If you have decided to purchase a batting cage, you have made a wise decision. The money you spend on a batting cage net and frame will provide great benefits and give your team or player a difinite advantage for years and years to come.

Whatever, you do, if you have the money to invest, do not change your mind. Go through with this project. Batting cage construction is not rocket science. It will be easier than you think if you follow our batting cage guide's step-by-step plans and instructions for batting cage construction. You can do this....we can help!
The choices you make concerning your backyard batting cage or home batting cage should be determined by three things.
1) The amount of money you have to spend on your new batting cage. 2) The amount of time and energy you can devote to the project.
3) The amount of space that you have to work with when you install your batting cage nets and frames.

Message to Baseball and Softball Parents
Recommended Blogs & Knols

Thursday, September 17, 2009

How To Develop A Balanced Hitting Base For Youth Baseball Players!

By Chip Lemin

When I see a youth baseball player shooting line drives all over the field, there are certain things I look for in their swing. The first thing I usually notice will be that the player is balanced during the entire swing. Balance in a baseball swing is something that will deliver consistent results for the hitter. The balance in a baseball swing begins with the stance. The player's weight should be evenly distributed on both feet to start. When the player begins the trigger, or start of the swing, some of the weight will then shift to the back leg. These subtle movements were not always clear to me. I learned most of this from watching our team take hitting instruction from a professional instructor.

Some people will groan about paying someone to help a youth baseball player learn to hit properly. I must say years ago I was not a believer in hitting lessons. I thought I already knew all about hitting. My child has always been able to hit well, mostly due to natural talent luckily. My child was asked to play in a tournament with a travel team. This team used hitting instruction. As I watched how much it helped my child improve, I wanted to know more.

The best baseball swings are usually short and compact with a smooth follow through. Most parents teach their kids to take a long stride. I was guilty of this this. I also let their arms drop down too low, developing a long slow swing. Most of my mistakes were at the tee ball and coach pitch level with my first child. My eyes were opened at these hitting instructions that I had a lot to learn. Taking a wider balanced stance is the beginning of a solid base to hit from. The first thing the instructor did was widen up my kid's stance. This improved the balance right way. It also makes it harder to take a long stride to the ball. I am in favor of hitting instruction as early as the player will accept it. Don't ever force them to go. My child was a little hesitant until watching other kids having fun doing it.

My early ideas about keeping the elbow up, and the long stride, did not lead to a balanced powerful swing. I quickly learned to accept a new way of thinking. The earlier a youth baseball player learns to develop a balanced swing the better. A balanced swing makes it easier to hit to all fields. A balanced swing is much easier to repeat over and over from a good balanced base. The first move to the baseball from the trigger position will be with the hands. This is difficult for young players to learn at first. The are many drills to help instill this important part of the swing. I will share some of them with you soon in an upcoming article.

We have covered the very basics of the balanced hitting base of the swing. Most players will have to widen their stance to at least shoulder with. Some players even a little more may be needed. My child has a wide stance. This helps keep the toes on the ground during the beginning of the swing. If a player is lifting up the toes during the swing, they are shifting their weight improperly. The hands should be held as high as the player feels comfortable with. They should not be buried up against the body either, We are trying to eliminate movement that is not needed in the swing. When there is less movement, it is easier to stay balanced. So go find a quality hitting instructor that both you and your child feel good about. Get some references from others if needed. Go to lessons with an open mind. You will both learn a lot about balance in the baseball swing.

Thanks Coach Chip

Chip Lemin has been a promoter of youth baseball since they started using aluminum bats. That's a long time. I have witnessed many good people get into coaching without solid coaching skills and it is not fun for them or the kids.Today's newer coaches are also being shortchanged on sportsmanship, like there is none. Visit my site to sign up for a insightful, informational, free coaching e-course at

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Message to Baseball and Softball Parents
Recommended Blogs & Knols

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Hitting Did You Knows

By Todd Thomas

Did you know...

...a baseball and/or softball bat is one of the few retail products of significant value that comes with no directions on how to use it?

...hitting is at the very least 50% from the neck up and very few hitters are taught the mental side of the hitting equation?

...most hitters and coaches will say on average that a player's mental game of confidence, focus, and composure make up 80% of how they perform in game situations over and above their mechanics. Yet, those same people will readily admit that they spend 2% or less of their time practicing their mental game while practicing 98% on the other 20% of the game. Hmmm???

...there are only TWO hitting techniques? A hitter either comes forward or stays back. If he weight-shifts forward (continuously moves his vertical plane forward out over the top of the front foot)as he swings, the hitter is linear. Rotational hitters also weight-shift, but once they reach the balance point in their stride, they rotate around a stationary axis as they swing. Simply put, hitters that "stay back" are rotational. A hitter CANNOT stay back and be considered linear.

...good hitting mechanics incorporate BOTH linear and rotational movements? A "hybrid" swing is nothing new. Good swings have always been "hybrid".

...that despite all the talk of what "linear" hitting is and what linear hitting isn't, it barely resembles what it was 25 years ago?

...there is no such thing as the one "perfect swing?" The perfect swing is the adjustments a hitter makes to the pitch each different pitch they see. As a result, the "perfect swing" constantly changes!

...that parents and too often even coaches are confusing young hitters by telling them when they are in the batter's box to get their elbow up or down? Having the elbow "up" or "down" is a "style" issue—NOT a mechanics issue?

...the major league average bat speed is 78 mph?

...that bat "speed" and bat "quickness are two distinctly different things?" Bat speed measures bat velocity or the actual speed of the bat; bat quickness measures the time lapse from launch-to-contact. If a hitter has good bat quickness (major league average is .16 seconds), they will have high bat velocity. However, a hitter can have high bat velocity and NOT have good bat quickness. Good bat quickness is a product of good torque in the swing. get the "same" performance/production from a wood bat that hitters get from aluminum, the wood bat should be two inches longer and two ounces heavier?

...there is no "proper" batting stance? It's different for each hitter and is a product of the hitter's "style"—not his technique.

..."no stride" hitting can make it easier for a hitter to focus on the pitch better because of less body/head movement?

...that Rogers Hornsby when asked what he did during the winter when there wasn't baseball said..."I stare out the window and wait for spring." Don't we all!

Now you know...if you didn't already.

Todd Thomas is a Baseball Coach and Professional Hitting Instructor for Mike Epstein Hitting. Coach Todd's personal hitting website is . Coach Todd also enthusiastically endorses as a place where baseball and softball hitters can master the Confidence, Composure, Focus and Consistency of their game so they can reach their full potential.

Article Source:

Shop for your baseball coaching needs including baseball training aids, training videos, and other coaching supplies. Check out the Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting machine by SKLZ at

See the “Original” Rotational Hitting Machine at Are you looking for the perfect trainer to teach proper timing and swing mechanics? You can stop looking and go to

Players develop incredible abt speed and confidence when they regularly use the Quick Swing Trainer. See it at See the world’s most advanced batting tee at

Are you looking for a great batting cage at discount prices? Are you considering building your own backyard batting cage and training center? If so, you should visit now!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Five Batting Trainers Every Baseball and Softball Parent Should Know About

Video features five popular and productive batting trainers. The trainers are the BatAction Machine, Hurricane Machine, HandsBack Hitter, StayBack Tee, and SKLZ Target Trainer. Each batting trainer is shown being hit by a player. Each trainer's specific use and purpose is also given.

Shop for your baseball coaching needs including baseball training aids, training videos, and other coaching supplies. Check out the Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting machine by SKLZ at

See the “Original” Rotational Hitting Machine at Are you looking for the perfect trainer to teach proper timing and swing mechanics? You can stop looking and go to

Players develop incredible abt speed and confidence when they regularly use the Quick Swing Trainer. See it at See the world’s most advanced batting tee at

Are you looking for a great batting cage at discount prices? Are you considering building your own backyard batting cage and training center? If so, you should visit now!

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Effects of Ibuprofen on Youth Pitching Arms

By Dan Gazaway

We are hearing more and more cases of Tendinitis developing in our youth pitchers. The normal recommendations or treatments for recovery are Ice, rest and a lot of Ibuprofen. How does all of this relate to the recovery process on the pitching arm? Well, we all know that there is definitely an overuse of young pitching arms. Some pitchers now days are playing for three different leagues or teams. They might play for a Super League team, City league and a fall league team. Regardless of each league counting pitches, Many pitchers are starting two or three games a week on the mound. That is ridiculous! There is no recovery time for the arm and less preparation time for your next outing.

How do we take care of Tendinitis or prevent it? The Diet plays a major role in the inflammatory process; the foods that you eat can stimulate inflammation and feed it like gas on a fire. Inflammation is the breakdown of old cells and the replacement of new cells. The diet that you're on can stimulate more of a chronic type of inflammatory response. As a pitcher, you want to make sure that you are eating an anti-inflammatory diet rich in essential fats.

There is value to Ice and rest, but there are many parents out there that give their kids too much Ibuprofen. Much of our diet is deficient in essential fatty acids EFA's. A lot of authors right now are writing about how the body is dealing with the inflammatory diet and say it is causing a prolonged effect on inflammation. In fact, there are necessary fats that we need in our diet. For the last 30 years the typical diet for Americans is anti fat, limited fat or no fat diets. The essential fats are Omega 3's that prevent inflammation. DHA is good for your liver and your brain. EPA's good for your joints. They slow down the inflammatory response.

When you throw a baseball you are constantly wearing on the ligaments, tendons and joints themselves. Choose Omega 3's that are rich in these essential fatty acids and not really rely on all of the ibuprofen. There is a lot of late research being done about the effects of Ibuprofen that suggest that it can actually slow down the healing process of tendinitis. The other danger of Ibuprofen is that you can play with pain and continue to damage the surrounding tendons and ligaments in your throwing arm.

Dan Gazaway is the owner and founder of The Pitching Academy in Utah. Coach Gazaway specializes in pitching mechanics and often writes and speaks about effective pitching workouts You can visit his website to learn more about baseball pitching grips, drills and tips.

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Friday, September 11, 2009

3 Hitting Drills Guaranteed to Produce Hits

By Jack Perconte

When a player doesn't hit, frustration sets in for players and parents alike. Hitting can be a very difficult skill for parents and untrained coaches to figure out. The good news is that you don't have to know what is wrong as long as you know how to "fix it." Hitting in its most basic form comes down to doing three things - watching the ball, throwing the hands (bat) at the ball, and opening the hips. The following three drills will make these things happen and can prove a quick exit from the player's hitting slump.

1. Seeing the Ball Drill - In batting practice put an object like a ball glove or empty soda can at the front of the opposite side batter's box. After taking their swing, the hitter should keep their eyes on the placed object for a second or two before looking out to see where they hit the ball. This will prevent hitters from pulling their head out early on the pitch and help prevent them from over swinging.

2. Pad Drill - Place a pad like a sponge, towel or the player's glove under their lead armpit when taking batting practice. The hitter's goal is to keep the glove under the arm until contact and then allow the pad to fall out after making contact. This drill ensures that the hitter is using their hands and forearms to swing the bat in a compact, direct manner.

3. Back Knee Pick-up Drill - Have the hitter pick up their back leg with their back knee turning to point at the pitcher as they swing. This drill will force the hitter to use their front side to pull the bat initially as well as forcing the hitter to open their hips. Both of these forced moves with this drill promote contact, weight shift and power.

There are many hitting drills that can benefit a hitter and it is a good idea to continue with some of them throughout the season. Drills are the best way to develop good fundamentals whereas batting practice is good for the hitter's timing.

Finally, it is always best to challenge hitters during batting practice with game like speeds and speed changes. There is no speed that is too slow or too fast, within reason of course based on the age of the player. Remember, you don't need to know what is fundamentally wrong with a hitter's swing as long as you know how to fix it.

Former major league baseball player, Jack Perconte gives baseball hitting tips and batting practice advice for ballplayers of all ages. His baseball hitting lessons advice can be found at

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Thursday, September 10, 2009

You Can Play College-Level Baseball After High School

You Can Play College-Level Baseball After High School
But Will You?

A freshman in high school starts out with the idea of going to college and playing college-level baseball. Throughout high school, this idea remains the same but you seem to lose track of time, something that we all take for granted, until it’s gone. Could you have done something differently that may have resulted in the opportunities you had in mind? Is the process as difficult as it seems that we tend to procrastinate?


You have the skills, the drive, the motivation, and most importantly, you have the family support. What could possibly be missing that prevents this from happening? All of the resources are out there, what’s the problem? There are so many opportunities available, so why are so many seniors up in arms by the time they graduate? Where did all of that time and planning go?

Who is responsible for this dilemma? No matter how you slice it, you and your parents play the most important role in your success. The outcome is the result of the actions you take and decisions you make. There are no rules determining correct or incorrect decisions, only that you make them. Success will not come on its own.

When it’s all said and done, one of two things is going to happen. You will be actively recruited, or not. Unfortunately, the later is most common, but it does it have to be? No matter what the outcome, the world has not come to an end. Situations change but the vision remains the same.


Here are some important issues you should consider. An early start to the process will give you a huge advantage. There are so many things that can be accomplished as a freshman or sophomore, staying one step ahead of the game. Juniors and seniors will be faced with a more aggressive approach. Bottom line, there is no time like the present to take action. In fact, for many parents, starting is the most difficult. Not because they don’t want to, they just don’t know how to.

One thing is for sure, there is no greater reward than the experience as you take this journey. An American pastime and your son is in it. You will welcome the road ahead and take the necessary steps to ensure that your son is on track, and take full advantage of the opportunities available to him. They are out there, you just need to go and get them.


Where does the high school coach fit in? Well, every high school and coach is different. One thing is for sure, if they could ensure that every one of their student-athletes could get into college and play baseball, they would. Most coach’s head straight to field, right after they leave their full-time job, spending more time with the team than they do with their families. For the most part, they do what they can with the resources they have. You may or may not get help from your high school coach, but you shouldn’t rely on it.

There are recruiting companies who will jump at the chance to help, although, they come at a price. You need to weight the benefits. Many families are on a limited budget and you will need to set aside some funds for attending events that range from $50 for a ½ day to large showcase events that could set you back up to $1000 for a weekend event. There are many issues to consider when deciding on which events to attend (i.e., skill level, grade level, budget, college interests, etc). These decisions should come fairly easy to you.

Most families will simply educate themselves on the process considering the alternatives. This is an excellent choice although it comes with great responsibility. Can you sacrifice the time and energy for the sake of your son’s future? Of course you can, and most parents do. The question is, will you get started or will you follow that popular pattern of letting time get the best of you. If you can get over that hump, you will find success and dreams will come true.

The Basics

As a freshman, you should start a large list of colleges you would be interested in attending. As you grow and mature, your interests may change. Continue to work hard academically – good grades will play a major role in the options you will have available by the time you graduate. As a sophomore, find a little time to visit a college campus or two, and familiarize yourself with the atmosphere. This will help you with your college list. Your junior year becomes a little more exciting. Register with the NCAA Eligibility Center (Clearinghouse), in the event that you have NCAA I or II in your sights. Continue to maintain good grades and stay focused. A player profile and a highlight video should be provided to college coaches. If they can’t see you in person, a skills video is an excellent tool. One way or another, a coach will not recruit you if they can’t see you.

There are many other ways to get yourself noticed. Check to see if there are any colleges on your list that are hosting any camps or clinics. Go! Of course, play as much summer travel baseball as you can. Consider a showcase event. Many colleges look to these organizations for recruits.

Always check with your guidance counselor to make sure you are on track academically. You don’t want to wait your senior year to find that you don’t meet eligibility requirements. Most NCAA colleges have higher academic standards and if you have the tools that NCAA is looking for, you don’t want academics to stand in your way.

Most importantly, set your goals high and keep your mind and options open. If you want to go to college and play college-level baseball, you can. The opportunity is there for everyone and you don’t have to be a top prospect or a valedictorian to do so. Many high school graduates attend junior college and go on to four-year institutions, some even enter the MLB draft. All is good!!! After all, obtaining a college education and playing baseball is the goal.

What Next?

Start now! That’s all it takes. One thing is for sure, four years of high school will come and go in a glance. There is no putting off for next year what you must be doing this year. This will be key to your success, and you can do it.

To find out how you can have all of the resources you need, visit Imagine having absolutely everything you need in one place, right now, at your fingertips. From academic requirements and recruiting guidelines, to college camp, clinic and showcase events happening all over the country. When you didn’t know where to start before, you do now. Visit us today at

About the Author
Thrandur is a well known author and a successful webmaster. He is the owner of You Can Play College-Level Baseball After High School.
Find more information a
bout Thrandur and his other websites at his blog where he shares digital technology, dream business & design success You Can Play College-Level Baseball After High School here.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Baseball Tryouts - Intangibles to Help You Stand Out

By Chuck R Stewart

Our baseball team held its tryout yesterday afternoon. Most of the kids who wanted to play again next year and who played on the team this last season did to have to go through an official tryout but a couple of them were put on notice that they would need to make the team again this year if we received some interest from talented players. Everyone took the news well because the understanding is that we are playing competitive baseball. Here are a few of the highlights and some thoughts on the intangibles that you should consider and use to your advantage at your next tryout.

Greeting. When you are greeting a coach for the first time be sure to look him or her in the eye and have a firm handshake while thanking them for the opportunity to tryout for the team. I was amazed at what a simple gesture this is that can influence a coaching staff as much as it did yesterday. There were three players who had the confidence to walk straight up to me, introduce themselves in an assertive manner and then begin to prepare for the tryout. Two of those three were offered spots on the team.

Playing Biography. Be prepared to offer a short playing bio when asked where you played and what positions you are interested in trying out for on the team. Players who give a short answer to that question are missing a great opportunity to tell the coaches quite a bit about themselves. Go so far as to have rehearsed a couple of sentences to share with the new coaches who have no idea who you are other than a name and number. One player yesterday afternoon had a few sentences together that even went so far as to tell me why he was interested in making our team. It went like this - Coach, my name is Jack Wilson (made up name for publishing). I played with the Tri County Cubs last year. I was the third pitcher in the starting rotation and pitched in 14 games last season. My ERA was 4.40. I also played third base, hit in the 6 spot in the lineup and hit .315 for the season. I am looking for a new team to play on next year because I want to be able to also participate in my high school football program summer workout sessions and the Cubs did not like us to play another sport while baseball is in season. Needless to say, I was very impressed and quickly escorted him to meet the other coaches - he was offered a spot on the roster last evening and will be a great addition to the team.

Get There Early. I was very unimpressed with how many of the 15 players trying out for the 4 spots available on our team showed up within 5-10 minutes of the tryout. All the coaches noticed. We started promptly at 2:00 and some of the boys were still putting their cleats on while were discussing the format for the tryout and providing some background for the team.

Use these tips to make a good first impression on the coaching staff, be prepared by continually taking batting practice and fielding, pitching prior to the tryout and you will be sure to put your best foot forward in making the team you would like to play on for next year.

Coach Chuck Stewart operates a baseball web site called offering pitching machines
batting cages training aids and coaching/instructional videos along with lots of free coaching content. Coach Chuck offers a pitching machine for every skill level and budget. He has coached baseball teams for 8 years and enjoys sharing the love of the game of baseball with his players.

Article Source:

Shop for your baseball coaching needs including baseball training aids, training videos, and other coaching supplies. Check out the Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting machine by SKLZ at

See the “Original” Rotational Hitting Machine at Are you looking for the perfect trainer to teach proper timing and swing mechanics? You can stop looking and go to

Players develop incredible abt speed and confidence when they regularly use the Quick Swing Trainer. See it at See the world’s most advanced batting tee at

Are you looking for a great batting cage at discount prices? Are you considering building your own backyard batting cage and training center? If so, you should visit now!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Monday, September 7, 2009

"Little Leaguer's elbow" can be serious if it becomes aggravated

Happy Labor Day! Here is an articles related to arm injuries for Little League and other Youth Baseball Players. The articles clearly exppalins the causes, signs and prevention of the injury calle "Little League Elbow" by doctors. Have a great day, Nick

"Little Leaguer's elbow" can be serious if it becomes aggravated

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Elements of a Great Baseball Glove

By Peter V. John
So you're shopping for a new baseball glove. You want something that will not just catch a ball but will feel like an extension of your own hand. That doesn't come with just any glove, which is why you need to shop carefully and keep in mind the things that make a baseball glove great.

Material - Baseball gloves can be made of synthetic materials or of leather. Most players choose leather for its softness and durability, as well as its ability to conform individually to the player's hand. Top-grain cowhide is the standard for most gloves. Full-grain leather is stiffer, which may make the glove last longer but also takes longer to break in than top-grain leather.

Webbing - The type of webbing you choose can depend upon the position you are playing. Webbing that has space between each strip of leather is ideal for outfielders and third basemen, because it has more "give" and can trap a ball easily. Middle infielders use closed webbing, a solid pocket, to quickly grab a ball from the pocket. Pitchers also prefer closed webbing to hide their pitches before they're thrown. There is also a trap-style or "six-finger" web that allows flexibility and versatility. Other open styles are the H-web and I-web.

Lacing - Make sure the lacing on your glove is nice and tight. If you can wiggle the finger stalls a lot while wearing the glove for the first time, the lacing is probably too loose. Remember that the lacing will loosen as the glove is broken in, so you don't want too loose a fit from the start.

Size - Keep in mind the position you will be playing when determining the size of your baseball glove. You wouldn't want an open-web, five-finger glove if you're a catcher; neither would you want to use a catcher's mitt in the outfield. Middle infielders need a short glove, while outfielders use a longer glove. First basemen use a mitt that is similar but not identical to a catcher's mitt. Whatever glove you choose, make sure it is appropriate to the position you will play most often.

Fit - Lastly, if the glove isn't comfortable the first time you wear it, don't expect it to miraculously conform to your hand as it is broken in. A certain level of stiffness is expected, but if the glove just feels wrong on your hand, give it up and try another glove. The glove should fit snugly yet comfortably, and have an adjustable wrist strap to allow for a personalized fit.

Vinci has manufactured high-quality baseball gloves and equipment since 1997. Vinci baseball gloves are the highest in quality, durability, style and performance. They are made from only the best US steer hide and kip leathers. When you wear a Vinci, you are part of our family.

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Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Build a Batting Cage in Your Backyard

By Brandon Bland

To build a batting cage, there are many different options you have to consider. A batting cage in your backyard can be one of the greatest assets to you or your child's playing career. Therefore, it is a wise investment and one that should be highly considered by every ballplayer and their parents.

The first thing to consider is where you would like to set up your batting cage. There are many various ways in which you can set up a cage, and will all depend on space available, budget, etc. First off, all cages will require various amounts of assembly and construction. If you have an unlimited budget and space available, it will be no problem to purchase a nice high quality cage from a company like Jugs or Atec.

For those of us looking to save a little money (who isn't, right?), there are many other options available. You may buy kits from several companies online that will ship most or all of the parts to you for fairly reasonable prices. Something that you should also consider is that you may purchase many of the parts, including netting, and especially the frame from your local hardware store. This can result in some pretty substantial savings, because you will end up saving on shipping costs.

If you have limited space, you may have to get a little creative on how you rig up your cage. There are however, standard sizes for cages that most nets are made for. Here is a list of some of those sizes.

70' L x 14' W x 12' H
65' L x 11' W x 11' H
10' L x 12' W x 12' H
55' L x 12' W x 12' H
40' L x 12' W x 12' H

The size you choose will depend on how much space you have to play with, how old the ballplayer using it will be, how much you wish to spend, etc. Obviously the larger nets cost more than the smaller ones. Regardless of the age, a wider and higher cage will allow for a little more comfort and room to work with.

Hopefully this will give you some insight into the things you should consider before you build a batting cage. Remember, that it will be a wise investment in you or your child's playing career, so take your time and make sure you will get exactly what you need. You can find more information about equipment and netting here:

Brandon Bland is the webmaster of Baseball Equipment Review, a site devoted to informing ballplayers of the quality of today's baseball equipment so they can make informed decisions about their purchases.

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Are you looking for a great batting cage at discount prices? Are you considering building your own backyard batting cage and training center? If so, you should visit now!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Do You Need Baseball Equipment For Training?

Buy Nedco Sports Products at Ebay Prices.

Do You Need Baseball Equipment For Training?

By Ken Austin

Whether you just want to play the sports enough so you can hit a home run or are determined that your son gets the opportunity to enter the major league. You could do a lot better by investing in baseball equipment that trains you for this.

As a little leaguer coach or just looking to bond with your son by coaching him on specifics of baseball, you can use baseball equipment that trains you for this job.

Why not try this baseball training equipment? The baseball Instructional DVDs & VHS videos would train you to pitch by learning the 30 common pitching mistakes to avoid. Or you could try baseball hitting videos that will take you from basic skills through advanced hitting drills and techniques. There are video training baseball equipment that would give you baseball workouts to increase you power and performance on the playing field. These kinds of training baseball equipment are worth investing on, as you can replay these until you get the training basics right.

Another baseball equipment you could utilize to increase your swinging prowess to a better speed are such products as a training bat. This baseball equipment usually has a properly weighted bat and resistance weights in the form of rings to ensure you train at just the right weight. As you build up strength, you can swing through the strike zone at higher and higher rates of speed.

Some other baseball equipment may not exactly qualify as baseball equipment but these magazines, training manuals and even training sessions with a professional are constructive steps to getting your baseball skills up to swing. Whether you want to go professional or just get one or two home runs. The use of baseball equipment to train you into improving is always a wise investment.

Ken Austin
Baseball Gear and Equipment
Sports Resource Guide

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