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Dealing with a plate discipline issue

Mar 10, 2016
533
18
Pennsylvania
I'm not sure if this is the right board for this post. If it's not, I'll direct this to one of the hitting boards.

I'm dealing with a plate discipline issue. We've had injuries all across our team...especially our infield and pitchers. My sister's broken leg in March being the most serious injury so far. But all of the others have been relatively minor. But, we had our third and five-hole hitters go down (I bat fourth). So, I don't see many hittable pitches. But, in my want to put the ball in play, I have started swinging at anything that looks remotely hittable. My walks have dramatically decreased and my strikeouts, groundouts and double plays hit into have dramatically increased. I know I'm not being productive just swinging at anything and everything isn't helping my team but I feel I need to keep swinging.

How can I increase my plate discipline and not swing at bad pitches when I have no protection in the lineup?
How do I get out of this thought process?

Thanks again.
 
Last edited:
May 9, 2019
48
8
I'm not an expert but I'd say just focus and try to not overthink things. By the way, kudos for you, as a young player to come on a forum to ask advice on how to improve your game. I really hope my daughter does the same some day. Good luck to you! Love the quote as well.
 
Nov 18, 2015
514
18
Adjust your position in the batters box. If they're pitching you away, crowd the plate.

If they're giving you all low change-ups or drop balls, move way up in the box (just be aware where your stride lands).

If no ones on base - take the walk, and turn it into a double or triple on the next few pitches if you have the speed.

If all else fails - try to enjoy the fact that you've completely gotten into their heads - and you're ability with the bat has been noticed by multiple coaches around your league.
 
Sep 28, 2015
123
18
I would think the idea is to focus less on balls/strikes as a reason to swing or not swing. The flaw with that approach is that the value of a BB vs a hit is not equal and can be more or less important depending on the hitting ability of the batter or situation. So a walk for the 1 or 9 hitter is just as good as a hit.

In your case being a 4 hole hitter you should focus on smacking anything that is YOUR pitch and ball/strike is irrelevant. If you don’t get a pitch that you can drive then you will get a BB because the other team basically intentionally walked you. You could not have done anything about it that would have been better!!!!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
Mar 22, 2016
122
18
Southern California
I would think the idea is to focus less on balls/strikes as a reason to swing or not swing. The flaw with that approach is that the value of a BB vs a hit is not equal and can be more or less important depending on the hitting ability of the batter or situation. So a walk for the 1 or 9 hitter is just as good as a hit.

In your case being a 4 hole hitter you should focus on smacking anything that is YOUR pitch and ball/strike is irrelevant. If you don’t get a pitch that you can drive then you will get a BB because the other team basically intentionally walked you. You could not have done anything about it that would have been better!!!!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I agree with this post. I think you need to hunt YOUR pitches if you don't have two strikes on you. Stay aggressive for the pitches you know you can damage. While a hit outweighs a walk, a walk is sure better than a strikeout, and even more valuable than a double play.
 
May 24, 2013
9,493
83
So Cal
An approach my DD has had since 12U, and continues to serve her well in 14U TB and HS, is adjusting what she's looking for based on the count.

0 strikes...You're looking for a pitch in your hot zone. First of all, you need to know where that location is, and what a pitch in that location looks like. If it comes, you'd better hit it hard! If it's not in that location, take it, even if it's called a strike.

1 strike...Expand your zone. Now, you're looking to do damage on anything in the strike zone, but don't chase out of the zone.

2 strikes...Get your bat on everything close to the zone. If you can foul off the ones around the edges, you give the pitcher another chance to hit put the ball where you can hit it hard. If it's in a good spot, solid contact is more important than all-out-power.
 
Dec 5, 2012
4,024
48
Mid West
Hey kiddo, Love your initiative...
The thing about balls and strikes is, they're subjective to the umpires perception. The edge pitches always change based on the Blue and their mood today.
My advise is to understand YOUR hitting zone! What can YOU drive with consistency? Continue to be aggressive, and work on timing. Hits will come. Do lots of tee work, placing the tee all over the zone... too high, too low, too in or out etc... Just remember to place the tee closer to the pitcher for inside pitches and closer to the catcher for outside. Get comfortable in you ability to hit anything! Good luck
 
Dec 10, 2015
481
18
Chautauqua County
"you're not helping your team, you're helping the opposing pitcher. is she your friend? does she need your help?" this is my short conversation with with my hitters who swing at stupid pitches. "can you hit that pitch? no, you can't. so why are you swinging at it?" all great advice above but the fact is you are choosing to swing at bad pitches. choose not to. you're a #4 hitter for a reason, eh. good luck.
 
Mar 10, 2016
533
18
Pennsylvania
Adjust your position in the batters box. If they're pitching you away, crowd the plate.

If they're giving you all low change-ups or drop balls, move way up in the box (just be aware where your stride lands).

If no ones on base - take the walk, and turn it into a double or triple on the next few pitches if you have the speed.

If all else fails - try to enjoy the fact that you've completely gotten into their heads - and you're ability with the bat has been noticed by multiple coaches around your league.
I've tried adjusting where I am in the batter's box and I really don't notice a whole lot of difference when I'm batting. I like to be in the middle of the box and I don't like to be crammed against the plate.

I do see more than my fair share of drop balls and change-ups. I like anything middle or lower in the strike zone. I can deposit a ball down and in to right field (I'm a lefty catcher) and I'll deposit pitches down and away to left. Plus I still crush mistakes as I have 8 homeruns in the 14 games I played of our 24 game season (we just finished my final season yesterday). My mistake is I'll swing at stuff I shouldn't swing at or anything up. I've tried hitting pitches up and pop up. Or I'll try hitting something too low and either strikeout, ground out or get into a double play.

If this was last school year, I'd believe you that I'm in some coach's heads. I don't think I am this season.
 
Mar 10, 2016
533
18
Pennsylvania
An approach my DD has had since 12U, and continues to serve her well in 14U TB and HS, is adjusting what she's looking for based on the count.

0 strikes...You're looking for a pitch in your hot zone. First of all, you need to know where that location is, and what a pitch in that location looks like. If it comes, you'd better hit it hard! If it's not in that location, take it, even if it's called a strike.

1 strike...Expand your zone. Now, you're looking to do damage on anything in the strike zone, but don't chase out of the zone.

2 strikes...Get your bat on everything close to the zone. If you can foul off the ones around the edges, you give the pitcher another chance to hit put the ball where you can hit it hard. If it's in a good spot, solid contact is more important than all-out-power.
This is totally the approach I'm going to take and hopefully, this mental block will be done by the time summer ball hits.
 

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