Foul balls are not a bad thing - hitting coaches must convince players of that.
Some of my common statements, when pitching batting practice are:
"Keep fouling them off, until he (game pitcher) makes a mistake."
"˜Good foul ball, pitcher's pitch - you didn't want to put that in play anyway"
"Way to get a piece, that keeps you alive for the next pitch."
"If you keep getting a piece of it, you can bat forever."
The point is that foul balls are not a bad thing. Most ball players get upset when they foul balls off, at least in batting practice. When throwing batting practice I do not let them get down over foul balls. I try to explain that foul balls are hitters' friends and that just getting a piece of the ball is a sign of a good swing. Additionally I tell hitters that any contact is better than the alternative, of no contact. Finally, along the same lines, I inform batters that fouling off pitches makes them a tough out, which is a good thing.
Finally, the goal is convincing players of that , as it still takes skill to even hit foul balls.
After playing major league baseball, Jack Perconte has taught baseball and softball since 1988 and offered valuable coaching training too. He has helped numerous youth players reach their potential, as well as having helped parents and coaches navigate their way through the challenging world of youth sports. Jack is one of the leading authorities in the areas of youth baseball training and coaching training advice.All Jack Perconte articles are used with copyright permission.
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