What Is Bat Lag And What Is The Easiest Way To Teach It?

The simplest definition of Bat Lag is that the hitter’s hands go through the zone first, thus causing the barrel to lag or follow the hands throughout the zone. The complex part is teaching your young hitter how to establish Bat Lag and incorporate it into a consistent short, professional-type swing.

Usually, when I begin teaching Bat Lag to young hitters, I get the look. You know the look. The one where their head is nodding yes, but their eyes are saying no. Or to be more exact, the look that says, you might as well be teaching me Chinese Arithmetic in Latin, because I don’t have a clue what you are talking about. This is where you, as a coach, cut to the chase and ask a question most young hitters have never considered. What part of the ball are you trying to hit?

Most young hitters will say (albeit incorrectly), the back of the ball. A few will even tell you, the top of the ball. The answer you want to hear in order to establish bat lag and as a result, a short, professional-type swing is the Inside Half of the baseball.

Quick Side note: Many Big Leaguers actually focus even more specifically on the Top-Inside Quarter of the ball, rather than the Inside Half, but remember, these are Big Leaguers!!!)

If you take a young hitter and do a simple side flip toss drill with him or her, with emphasis on where the point of contact is established on the baseball, you will see the fallacy of a young hitter making contact with the back of the ball (and the subsequent lean-back, lazy fly ball or ground ball with top spin) and/or the top of the ball (and the resulting lunging chopper/hard ground ball into the turf, or lazy line drive settling harmlessly into the netting of the cage), and the benefits of establishing contact on the inside half of the ball (and the consistently hard line drives which will ride through the back of the cage one swing after another!)

At the conclusion of this drill, sit down for a moment with your young hitter and ask him or her, Now, if you could take all your ground balls and your fly balls from last year, and instead create line drives this year simply by hitting the inside half of the baseball, how much higher do you think your batting average would be?

Trust me. The look of confusion will disappear and instead, it will be replaced by a new look; the look of a youngster who is dreaming about having a great season at the plate!

Former Professional Baseball Player, Chance Reynolds, is widely recognized as one of the best private instructors in amateur baseball today. Become a better hitter today by swinging his brand new hitting aid,, The Pitcher’s Nightmare Swing Trainer. http://www.pitchersnightmare.com

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