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  • Batting practice: waste of time?

    Batting Practice - Cherished Tradition or Colossal Waste of Time?
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/17/sp...pagewanted=all

    Batting practice lasts 50 minutes for each team, and it involves infielders taking ground balls and outfielders chasing down fly balls. But despite its almost sacred place in the game, there is one little secret about batting practice: many players think it is a colossal waste of time, a mind-numbing, flaw-producing, strategically empty exercise.
    I think it serves a purpose. I would like to see fans on the field shagging fly balls like Zack Hample.
    The Mets have the best, smartest fans in baseball.

  • #2
    I guess some of the players think sitting on their butts another 50 minutes before the game would be more productive.
    sigpic

    "If I hear Bowie Kuhn say just once more he's doing something for the betterment of baseball, I'm going to throw-up.">Sparky Anderson
    MLB/Rockies/Yankees, Backer

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Blue387 View Post
      Batting Practice - Cherished Tradition or Colossal Waste of Time?
      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/17/sp...pagewanted=all



      I think it serves a purpose. I would like to see fans on the field shagging fly balls like Zack Hample.
      I would love to be on the feild with players and shag fly balls would be a great experience.
      All it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing. -Unknown

      A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination. -Nelson Mandela

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      • #4
        From my experience I can say that I hate hitting in a game without BP.

        It should be done the right way though. first of all the coach should try to throw really hard (of course he won't throw 90 but 70 from 45 feet will do the job too). also swings should have a purpose and not just hack away.
        I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by dominik View Post
          From my experience I can say that I hate hitting in a game without BP.

          It should be done the right way though. first of all the coach should try to throw really hard (of course he won't throw 90 but 70 from 45 feet will do the job too). also swings should have a purpose and not just hack away.
          I agree...you hear about guys and their batting practice power...that is always code to me for "he strikes out a lot in games"

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          • #6
            Who cares what any players think. It's their F-ING job. Get out there and take BP.


            Sent from my iPhone
            Eaton Swap + 4.10's = Wreeeeeeeeeedom!!
            sigpic
            I have had the pleasure of watching games at: Comiskey Park, Comiskey Park II, Wrigley Field, Jacobs Field, Municipal Stadium, Three Rivers Stadium, Miller Park, Yankee Stadium (The one and only), and Fenway Park.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by 1983whitesox View Post
              Who cares what any players think. It's their F-ING job. Get out there and take BP.
              But you might hurt their feelings!
              The Mets have the best, smartest fans in baseball.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Blue387 View Post
                But you might hurt their feelings!
                LMAO!!

                Your right. Give them another couple of mill$$$
                That will smooth things over.


                Sent from my iPhone
                Eaton Swap + 4.10's = Wreeeeeeeeeedom!!
                sigpic
                I have had the pleasure of watching games at: Comiskey Park, Comiskey Park II, Wrigley Field, Jacobs Field, Municipal Stadium, Three Rivers Stadium, Miller Park, Yankee Stadium (The one and only), and Fenway Park.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Cap78 View Post
                  I agree...you hear about guys and their batting practice power...that is always code to me for "he strikes out a lot in games"
                  Ahh...we call that the "Brad Eldred principle" here in Pittsburgh. I hear he's still in AAA hitting colossal homers, but still striking out a ton.
                  LETS GO BUCS!!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by BeatEmBucs View Post
                    Ahh...we call that the "Brad Eldred principle" here in Pittsburgh. I hear he's still in AAA hitting colossal homers, but still striking out a ton.
                    I have heard that you have a new BP phenomenon in Pittsburgh.

                    Unfortunately I'm one too this year. I have hit only one bomb this year depite hitting bombs in BP every time. that sucks, my average is OK (although I'm streaky) and I have increased my batspeed by about 15 mph this winter (probably 10 are left now) but it didn't really translate since I have some timing problems and often early.
                    I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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                    • #11
                      Note that the article is about pre-game batting practice.

                      There is definitely merit to the thoughts in the article. A game can last 2-4 hours. Factor in that pre-game bp lasts an hour and 40 min (both teams) and pre-game infield (a lot of teams have done away with it) lasts 20 minutes and you are looking at a long day. Not to mention that the number of cuts in pre-game is often excessive. It's tiring.

                      How long can a player stay sharp? I say the pre-game activities should be shortened. Have to sell it psychologically to the players because many will feel
                      they are not "ready". But a lot of the big leaguers are right-it's too much, too long, and counter-productive.
                      Major Figure

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by omg View Post
                        Note that the article is about pre-game batting practice.

                        There is definitely merit to the thoughts in the article. A game can last 2-4 hours. Factor in that pre-game bp lasts an hour and 40 min (both teams) and pre-game infield (a lot of teams have done away with it) lasts 20 minutes and you are looking at a long day. Not to mention that the number of cuts in pre-game is often excessive. It's tiring.

                        How long can a player stay sharp? I say the pre-game activities should be shortened. Have to sell it psychologically to the players because many will feel
                        they are not "ready". But a lot of the big leaguers are right-it's too much, too long, and counter-productive.
                        We also have to consider how much batting practice these guys take in a day. Do we really think they don;t hit in the cage all the time?

                        Baseball is not short on guys that like to hit. When it comes to things to work on, it seems to be the one thing everyone likes to do.

                        A couple of years ago I got the honor of driving a pro baseball player to a game. The game started at 7:05, he had to be at the stadium (KC) at 1:30 (rookie). These guys put in plenty of time, and plenty of work.

                        If they are saying that PRE-GAME BP is a waste of time, shouldn't we listen? Do we really need to perceive that it means they don;t want to work or they aren't interesting in practicing their hitting?

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                        • #13
                          There's no way for anyone to know how much BP a player takes away from pregame. When there's a flaw in their swing they don't wait for pregame to work on it. We often didn't get BP for away games in high school and Legion. By college and college summer ball the first few swings were for the game. The rest were how many could I jack. I spent one BP trying to hit a coach I didn't care got who was leaning on the fence down the line. The best warmp up from BP was the loose attitude of shagging balls in the outfield.

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                          • #14
                            Wow, I can't believe how the American work ethic erodes away day by day.

                            This is all about baseball, for criminy's sake, and if ballplayers think BP is work they should get real jobs. :hissyfit:

                            Tony Gwynn was known for taking BP in dedicated fashion 364 days a year. I think it was in an SI article where this point was made, and that he took Christmas Day off and then resumed on 12/26.

                            As a nonplaying fan, I can only speak of how well the driving range helps my golf game. Whenever I go, I hit the ball much more consistently should I be able to play soon after the range session. Driving ranges are very boring, and to have it work well as intended, you can't rush through the bucket of balls. You have to have a purpose for the session. It is not about entertainment.
                            Last edited by abolishthedh; 08-21-2012, 06:32 AM. Reason: smiley
                            Catfish Hunter, RIP. Mark Fidrych, RIP. Skip Caray, RIP. Tony Gwynn, #19, RIP

                            A fanatic is someone who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. -- Winston Churchill. (Please take note that I've recently become aware of how this quote applies to a certain US president. This is a coincidence, and the quote was first added to this signature too far back to remember when).

                            Experience is the hardest teacher. She gives the test first and the lesson later. -- Dan Quisenberry.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by abolishthedh View Post
                              Wow, I can't believe how the American work ethic erodes away day by day.

                              This is all about baseball, for criminy's sake, and if ballplayers think BP is work they should get real jobs. :hissyfit:

                              What you're describing is NOT what the players are describing.

                              YOU are talking about BP in general, and/or working at your craft. The players are talking ONLY about pre-game BP on the field.

                              Again, how many players do we know that don;t love to practice hitting?

                              Tony Gwynn was known for taking BP in dedicated fashion 364 days a year. I think it was in an SI article where this point was made, and that he took Christmas Day off and then resumed on 12/26.

                              As a nonplaying fan, I can only speak of how well the driving range helps my golf game. Whenever I go, I hit the ball much more consistently should I be able to play soon after the range session. Driving ranges are very boring, and to have it work well as intended, you can't rush through the bucket of balls. You have to have a purpose for the session. It is not about entertainment.
                              Again, YOU'RE talking about practice in general, the players are talking ONLY of the pre-game BP on the field (y'know that fans watch).

                              If the players were saying that they don;t want to be required to practice their hitting, then your comments would be spot on. They're not, so they're not.

                              MY guess is the players would much rather take BP in private with their instructor. I'm guessing that pre-game BP the players feel like they need to "put a show on for the fans" rather than working on their swing mechanics. In other words, it's more akin to HR Derby that actual batting practice. Even my 11yo son knows Ichiro's BP swing doesn't look like his game swing. So, how valuable can it be?

                              I once saw a batter hit 12 consecutive home runs in pre-game BP. The player was Mark Salas. That's how important pre-game BP is.

                              Again, players aren't saying they don;t want to practice. They're saying they don't value pre-game practice. It's gets tiring when non-playing fans use that to mean something it doesn't.

                              I live in a developed nation. That doesn't mean that I should work 12 hour days without complaint because I owe it to people in undeveloped nations that do not have the opportunity to work such a job. In other words, non-playing fans should either [1] get more talent or [2] STFU.

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