We all know that a hitter has one job and only one job,
Hit the ball!
Most players spend countless hours working on their hitting because they want to excel at this very difficult skill. Many experts talk about hitting being the most difficult skill in sports and I’m not going to argue that statement.
So if hitting the ball is the goal then striking out is the worst thing a hitter can do, right?
Well, as always there are some things to consider. First and foremost, a strike out is just an out so striking out shouldn’t mean any more than a pop up or ground out. But we do know that a strikeout is a scarlet letter that no hitter wants to wear.
What can we do to avoid the dreaded strikeout?
- Stay aggressive. If a hitter goes to the plate with an aggressive mindset, expecting to hit the first strike they see, they greatly reduce the number of times they will strike out. If you swing three times in every at bat you are a lot more likely to put the ball in play than if you take strikes.
- Know your zone. Too many hitters look for their “perfect” pitch early in the count which means they often take strikes that are really good hitter’s pitches, they just aren’t their “perfect” pitch. A pitch that is 6 inches away from your favorite pitch is almost always a pitch that you can crush. Crush it and you don’t have to worry about striking out.
- Stay focused and confident when you get behind in the count. All it means when you have two strikes on you is that the pitcher still has to throw another strike to get you out. You are still in charge and if you take a great swing at the next strike that the pitcher has to throw you, you’re probably putting that ball in play.
Everyone who plays this game is going to strike out. It is just an out. Never let the last at bat impact the next one. Go up there hacking and something good will happen!