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Tee Drills - My Son and I Disagree

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  • Tee Drills - My Son and I Disagree

    My son has been doing a lot of tee work lately, in order to tweak his swing and correct some minor flaws as he continues rehabbing from elbow surgery. We are having some disagreements as far as tee placement, feet placement, etc. and I was hoping to get some input.

    If you are doing tee work for a basic swing (i.e. not working on inside/outside pitches, etc.), I was always taught that you should place the tee immediately in FRONT of where home plate would be. You would then take a normal stance in the batter's box in relation to home plate and not the tee. And maybe you take your stance a bit more back off the plate since you are hitting a ball down the middle of plate and you aren't actually taking a stance to allow coverage of the outside corner. Then as you hit with this set-up, your swing cues and goal is to hit the ball "up the middle".

    My son contends that when he sets up this way, he has to reach and can only pull the ball. When he does tee work, he inevitably keeps inching forward after each swing until he has his front foot (after stride/plant) is almost even with the vertical tee support at contact. He says it doesn't "feel right" to hit the ball in front of the plate.

    I'm wondering if I'm right, he's right, or the truth is somewhere in the middle? He seems to hit with more power if he makes contact more in front and if immediately prior to arm extension (See Pujols pic), but what are good swing cues or things to work on so that it doesn't feel to him like he's reaching or pulling across the ball.

    Thanks

    Twitch5
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Originally posted by Twitch5 View Post
    If you are doing tee work for a basic swing (i.e. not working on inside/outside pitches, etc.), I was always taught that you should place the tee immediately in FRONT of where home plate would be. You would then take a normal stance in the batter's box in relation to home plate and not the tee. And maybe you take your stance a bit more back off the plate since you are hitting a ball down the middle of plate and you aren't actually taking a stance to allow coverage of the outside corner. Then as you hit with this set-up, your swing cues and goal is to hit the ball "up the middle".
    Because you move forward or back in the box depending on the speed of the pitcher, I don't use home plate as a reference point.

    I think your son is telling you that he has to disconnect/extend prematurely when he hits the ball the way you want him to.

    When working on hitting a ball over the middle of the plate, I set the tee at the front heel. I move it up to the front toe for a ball inside and behind the front heel for a ball outside.

    However, again you have to use anatomical reference points since your position relative to the plate is going to vary according to the pitcher's velocity.

    Hitting Coordinator for Harris-Stowe State University in St. Louis.

    I also work with the pitchers who are dealing with injury problems.

    Comment


    • #3
      When setting the tee up where you are saying you have to consider that the batter is setting up in the standard spot to where they is probably the contact point for an up the middle type swing. If he is further back in the box, his arms are shorter, stance isn't as wide, etc. (all the variables) then he may be right. Probably the only way to see for sure is to video him and see if he is in the proper position when the tee is in those positions. I'm guessing that he might be right on this one.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Chris O'Leary View Post
        I think your son is telling you that he has to disconnect/extend prematurely when he hits the ball the way you want him to.

        When working on hitting a ball over the middle of the plate, I set the tee at the front heel. I move it up to the front toe for a ball inside and behind the front heel for a ball outside.
        I basically agree with this.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by CoachHenry View Post
          I basically agree with this.
          I agree as well. For middle hitting, set the tee where stride foot is located, or where the stride foot will land.
          The Magicman Principle

          "Always look until you find video that can be used to prove your point, and when all else fails, bash someone"

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          • #6
            Because you move forward or back in the box depending on the speed of the pitcher, I don't use home plate as a reference point.
            Chris - can you expand on your above statement?
            "Tip it and rip it" - In Memory of Dmac
            "Hit the inside seam" - In Memory of Swingbuster

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Stealth View Post
              Chris - can you expand on your above statement?
              At the youth, rec level (e.g. 13U) you see a wide range of pitching velocities, ranging from 50 MPH to 70 MPH. I move my guys up in the box, toward the pitcher, for slower pitchers and back in the box, toward the catcher, for faster pitchers. That helps to reduce the timing difference between slower pitchers and faster pitchers.

              As a result, because for faster pitchers your front heel may be in the middle of the plate, and for slower pitchers your front heel may be out in front of the plate, it doesn't make sense to use home plate as an absolute point of reference. Instead, I use the front heel as a consistent reference point.

              Of course, at the ML level there is much less variation in velocity (Moyer and Wakefield being exceptions), so hitters generally always set up back in the box so you could use the plate as a consistent reference point. However, even at the ML level some guys set up toward the front of the box and some guys set up back in the box.
              Hitting Coordinator for Harris-Stowe State University in St. Louis.

              I also work with the pitchers who are dealing with injury problems.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Twitch5 View Post
                My son has been doing a lot of tee work lately, in order to tweak his swing and correct some minor flaws as he continues rehabbing from elbow surgery. We are having some disagreements as far as tee placement, feet placement, etc. and I was hoping to get some input.

                If you are doing tee work for a basic swing (i.e. not working on inside/outside pitches, etc.), I was always taught that you should place the tee immediately in FRONT of where home plate would be. You would then take a normal stance in the batter's box in relation to home plate and not the tee. And maybe you take your stance a bit more back off the plate since you are hitting a ball down the middle of plate and you aren't actually taking a stance to allow coverage of the outside corner. Then as you hit with this set-up, your swing cues and goal is to hit the ball "up the middle".

                My son contends that when he sets up this way, he has to reach and can only pull the ball. When he does tee work, he inevitably keeps inching forward after each swing until he has his front foot (after stride/plant) is almost even with the vertical tee support at contact. He says it doesn't "feel right" to hit the ball in front of the plate.

                I'm wondering if I'm right, he's right, or the truth is somewhere in the middle? He seems to hit with more power if he makes contact more in front and if immediately prior to arm extension (See Pujols pic), but what are good swing cues or things to work on so that it doesn't feel to him like he's reaching or pulling across the ball.

                Thanks

                Twitch5
                The generic, or "standard" position for the tee is somewhere close to where your front foot is after you stride, and setup as if it was a pitch right down the middle.

                Comment


                • #9
                  THe clip of Pujols you posted...he is not making contact with the ball in front of his front foot. THe ball is actually exiting his bat there...he has already made contact. In my opinion, one of the worst cues you can give a kid is to purposely try to hit the ball in front of the plate.

                  Comment

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