Tech in Baseball

 Follow Through Swing
(8/7/2019)
 
   

Follow Through Swing 


Tech in Baseball
Presented with Diamond Kinetics


Skill Set: Hitting
Difficulty Level: Easy
Number of Athletes and Coaches: 1-2 athletes and 1 coach, or 2 athletes as partners
Average Time to Complete: 5 minutes
Equipment Required: Bat, tee, baseballs, net or screen to hit into

Goal: Follow through keeping both hands on the bat finishing even with the shoulder

Description of the Drill: 
• Have hitter set up at the plate, or in an open area
• Hitter should swing, focusing on keeping both hands on the bat through the follow through and finishing with the bat even with their shoulders
• Partners switch after 5 swings

Add Difficulty:
• To add a degree of difficulty, hitters can hit a ball off the tee keeping the focus on the follow through

Using Diamond Kinetics SwingTracker Sensor and mobile App - the following metrics and tools can help you measure your swing and see improvement when doing this drill:

Hand Cast Distance
Overview: Hand Cast Distance measure starts when the hitter gets to the load position.  From that point when the bat starts forward acceleration, it measures how far the knob of the bat travels away from that point…measured in inches.  This control metric is important because it shows a hitter’s ability to stay inside the ball instead of swinging around the ball.

Optimal Ranges by Age:
• U10-14 – expect double digit numbers in the teens.
• U15-18 – the batter should try to be a 10 or lower. A good swing

Coaching Insights:
• Hand Cast Distance allows coaches to quantify if a player is staying inside the ball, swinging with his ‘hands back’ and keeping the bat in the best possible position – over the back shoulder – before uncoiling the hands and bat toward the pitched ball.
• Having a large Hand Cast Distance makes it difficult for a batter to hit the fastball, and/or adjust to hitting balls that occupy the middle or inside part of the plate.
• In an ideal swing that results in a minimal amount of hand cast, the hands stay close to the shoulder, with the hands and barrel staying inside the baseball before the barrel gets on plane with the path of the pitch.

Approach Angle  
Overview: Using the Approach Angle metric, hitters clearly know the direction of their swing plane at the moment of impact.  While the optimal Approach Angle is dependent on the type of pitch, it typically needs to be between +5° degrees and +15° degrees in order to hit a line drive and between +20° and +35° degrees in order to hit a home run.

Optimal Ranges by Type of Batter:
• For U10-14 players learning to hit line-drives: +6 to +10
• For U15-18 player who want to hit line-drives: +11 to +19
• For U15-18 power hitters who have strength & ability to hit deep: +20 to +35

Coaching Insights:
• Consider that a pitch is coming “downhill” from the mound at a -6° degree to -8° degree angle. To counter that, a batter should be making contact at an upward angle to “match the plane of the pitch” at a minimum. 
• If you have a kid who is hitting a lot of ground balls – look at the approach angle and work drills to get the point of contact happening at a positive angle. 
• When you marry Approach Angle with Distance in the Zone, you might see why a kid is popping up too much or fouling off. 
• When hitting off a tee or even soft toss, you’d hope to see fairly consistent Approach Angles swing-by-swing, but when doing BP or facing live pitching, you will see a bigger range because the hitter has to “go get” the pitch (and that’s OK). 


Distance in the Zone
Overview: Using the Distance in the Zone metric, hitters can determine when their barrel is entering and leaving the hitting zone.  The longer the barrel stays in the hitting zone, the better chance the player has to make consistent, solid contact.  This is clearly depicted in the 3D viewer as the blue portion of the swing path.

Optimal Ranges by Age:
• U10-14: Good is 29-32 inches
• U15-18: Good is 31-34 inches
• College-Pro: Good is 33-37 inches

Coaching Insights:
• Having a swing that maintains a good Distance in The Zone gives the batter a better chance of making contact with the pitch. It also means the swing is “more forgiving” 
• Having a good Distance In The Zone can account for small errors in timing because there is more “space” for the batter to make contact and still put the ball in play.
• This metric can help coaches identify loopy swings based on how early the barrel enters the zone and if there is a ‘hard-turn’ coming out of the zone.
• Additionally, based on where contact is most often made, it can help identify if a hitter is having issues with timing up the pitch.

For more Tech in Baseball videos, click here.


Diamond Kinetics is the market leader in mobile motion technology and information that enables player development, superior equipment fitting, objective scouting and recruiting, and engagement-driven entertainment.


 Knee to Knee Tee
(8/1/2019)
 
   

Knee to Knee Tee


Tech in Baseball
Presented with Diamond Kinetics


Skill Set: Hitting
Difficulty Level: Easy
Number of Athletes and Coaches: 1-2 athletes and 1 coach, or 2 athletes as partners
Average Time to Complete: 5 minutes
Equipment Required: Bat, tee, baseballs, net or screen to hit into

Goal: Focus on keeping the front leg firm throughout the finish of the swing

Description of the Drill: 
• Tee set up in front of the middle of the plate
• Hitter sets up even with the plate, while partner places a ball on the tee
• Hitter starts with 75% swings
• After hitter makes contact, the back kneecap should move toward the inside of the front knee, touching it, and lifting the back foot off of the ground
• The focus should be on keeping the front leg firm throughout the finish of the swing
• Once the hitter feels comfortable with this movement, they can perform 100% swings with the knee to knee movement
• Partners switch after 10 swings

Add Difficulty:
• To add a degree of difficulty, the hitter can also move the tee to different contact point heights (low, middle, high)

Using Diamond Kinetics SwingTracker Sensor and mobile App - the following metrics and tools can help you measure your swing and see improvement when doing this drill:

Approach Angle
Overview: Using the Approach Angle metric, hitters clearly know the direction of their swing plane at the moment of impact.  While the optimal Approach Angle is dependent on the type of pitch, it typically needs to be between +5° degrees and +15° degrees in order to hit a line drive and between +20° and +35° degrees in order to hit a home run.

Optimal Ranges by type of batter:
• For U10-14 players learning to hit line-drives: +6 to +10
• For U15-18 player who want to hit line-drives: +11 to +19
• For U15-18 power hitters who have strength & ability to hit deep: +20 to +35


Coaching Insights:
• Consider that a pitch is coming “downhill” from the mound at a -6° degree to -8° degree angle. To counter that, a batter should be making contact at an upward angle to “match the plane of the pitch” at a minimum. 
• If you have a kid who is hitting a lot of ground balls – look at the approach angle and work drills to get the point of contact happening at a positive angle. 
• When you marry Approach Angle with Distance in the Zone, you might see why a kid is popping up too much or fouling off. 
• When hitting off a tee or even soft toss, you’d hope to see fairly consistent Approach Angles swing-by-swing, but when doing BP or facing live pitching, you will see a bigger range because the hitter has to “go get” the pitch (and that’s OK). 

Distance in the Zone
Overview: Using the Distance in the Zone metric, hitters can determine when their barrel is entering and leaving the hitting zone.  The longer the barrel stays in the hitting zone, the better chance the player has to make consistent, solid contact.  This is clearly depicted in the 3D viewer as the blue portion of the swing path.

Optimal Ranges by Age:
• U10-14: Good is 29-32 inches
• U15-18: Good is 31-34 inches
• College-Pro: Good is 33-37 inches

Coaching Insights:
• Having a swing that maintains a good Distance in The Zone gives the batter a better chance of making contact with the pitch. It also means the swing is “more forgiving” 
• Having a good Distance In The Zone can account for small errors in timing because there is more “space” for the batter to make contact and still put the ball in play.
• This metric can help coaches identify loopy swings based on how early the barrel enters the zone and if there is a ‘hard-turn’ coming out of the zone.
• Additionally, based on where contact is most often made, it can help identify if a hitter is having issues with timing up the pitch.

Max Barrel Speed
Overview: Using Barrel speed, hitters can know the maximum speed of the bat’s barrel during their swing.  It’s measured in miles per hour, so it’s easy to understand and measure improvement over time.  Higher barrel speed is the main factor in producing high exit velocity after contact so the ball goes further… faster.

Top 10% of Age Groups:
• U10 Players: 49mph +
• U12 Players: 54mph +
• U14 Players: 58mph +
• U16 Players: 63mph +
• U18 Players: 69mph +
• D1 College:   72mph +

Coaching Insights:
• This is the maximum speed of the bat’s barrel during a swing, at a point 20% from the tip of the bat (i.e. the sweet spot). It is the main factor in producing high exit velocity when the ball is hit. It greatly affects both the distance and speed at which the ball travels after impact. 
• Keep in mind that hitters need to “square the ball up” to maximize ball exit velocity.
• Increasing barrel speed is an important goal. Improvement should be measured over time to see if there is real physical and/or swing-mechanic growth. 
• Mechanics are important, but so is size & strength. So when thinking about a kid’s projectability, keep in mind if a player is not done growing yet.

For more Tech in Baseball videos, click here.


Diamond Kinetics is the market leader in mobile motion technology and information that enables player development, superior equipment fitting, objective scouting and recruiting, and engagement-driven entertainment.


 Decline Swings
(7/12/2019)
 
   

Decline Swings


Tech in Baseball
Presented with Diamond Kinetics


Skill Set: Hitting
Difficulty Level: Easy
Number of Athletes and Coaches: 1-2 athletes and 1 coach, or 2 athletes as partners
Average Time to Complete: 5 minutes
Equipment Required: Bat, pitcher's mound or decline hill or similar slope  

Goal: Focus on hitting against the front leg and keeping upper body and head behind it

Description of the Drill: 
• Hitter sets up in hitting stance on a decline hill or similar slope (like a pitcher’s mound) with back foot at top of the hill and front foot down the hill
• Hitter takes dry swings (without hitting a ball)
• Focus should be on hitting against the front leg and keeping the head and body behind it
• If hitter feels their head and upper body getting out over their front leg, they should move their front leg forward a half inch and repeat until they find a spot where their body and head stays behind their leg (this is the stance they should then use as their hitting stance)
• Partners switch after 10 swings

Add Difficulty:
• To add a degree of difficulty, hitters can hit off of a tee from the decline position
• To add a degree of difficulty, hitters can hit front toss from the decline position

Using Diamond Kinetics SwingTracker Sensor and mobile App - the following metrics and tools can help you measure your swing and see improvement when doing this drill:


Impact Momentum
Overview: Impact Momentum is a combination of barrel speed and the size of the bat the hitter is swinging.  The higher the impact momentum, the better chance a hitter has to do damage with greater exit velocities.  Impact Momentum is a great measure of the power potential of a given hitter.

Top 10% of Age Groups: 
• U10 Players: 13 KG/M +
• U12 Players: 15 KG/M +
• U14 Players: 19 KG/M +
• U16 Players: 24 KG/M +
• U18 Players: 27 KG/M +
• D1 College:   28 KG/M +

Coaching Insights:
• Impact Momentum is a “smarter version” of barrel speed because it takes into account the size of the bat. If a kid swings a bigger bat at the same speed, when contact happens, the ball goes further.
• If you want to understand how improving Impact Momentum translates to the game – for every +1 a hitter adds to their Impact Momentum, it equates to roughly a 1.5 MPH increase in exit velocity. And every 1.5 MPH of exit velo translates to roughly 6-10 more feet of carry, depending on launch angle.  
• If you have a high-school kid playing on a full-size field, the magic Impact Momentum number to hit dingers is 27 + (with the right launch angle, of course). A well hit ball with an “IM” of 24 is caught well inside the warning track. Hit it with an IM of 27+ and it is out of the park.

Max Acceleration
Overview: This is the maximum acceleration the bat experiences during a swing. To be clear, acceleration is not how fast the bat is moving; that’s barrel speed. Acceleration determines how quickly a hitter can reach that top speed. Great bat acceleration is in the DNA of elite hitters.

Top 10% of Age Groups:
• U10 Players: 25 G’s +
• U12 Players: 32 G’s +
• U14 Players: 35 G’s +
• U16 Players: 38 G’s +
• U18 Players: 42 G’s +
• D1 College: 49 G’s +

Coaching Insights:
• Max Acceleration tells coaches & scouts if a player can get the bat up to speed in a shorter time, allowing them to… 1) wait longer to recognize the pitch 2) decide what to do 3) And still have the ability to achieve their goal.
• This is a high-level metric that can sometimes stand apart from Max Barrel Speed and Impact Momentum. Max Acceleration requires all parts of the swing to sequence together, achieving that ‘snap’ of the bat that indicates great acceleration.
• You’ll often hear people say, ‘when that kid hits, it sounds different.” This metric is the science behind that old adage.

For more Tech in Baseball videos, click here.


Diamond Kinetics is the market leader in mobile motion technology and information that enables player development, superior equipment fitting, objective scouting and recruiting, and engagement-driven entertainment.


 Bat Behind Hips
(7/12/2019)
 
   

Bat Behind Hips


Tech in Baseball
Presented with Diamond Kinetics


Skill Set: Hitting
Difficulty Level: Easy
Number of Athletes and Coaches: 1-2 athletes and 1 coach, or 2 athletes as partners
Average Time to Complete: 5 minutes
Equipment Required: Bat, tee, baseballs, net or screen to hit into

Goal: Activate the hips into the swing by using only the lower half in the swing

Description of the Drill: 
• Tee set up in front of the middle of the plate at the height of the bat once placed behind hips
• Hitter sets up even with the plate, while partner places a ball on the tee
• Hitter puts the bat behind their back, resting right above their hips with the barrel of the bat off of their back hip and hooks their arms around the bat
• Hitter hits the ball off the tee by firing with the hips and having the hips control the bat to the ball
• If the hitter is pulling the ball to the pull side, they are casting their hands
• Partners switch after 10 swings


Add Difficulty:
• To add a degree of difficulty, the partner can toss the hitter baseballs, either from side toss or front toss.

Using Diamond Kinetics SwingTracker Sensor and mobile App - the following metrics and tools can help you measure your swing and see improvement when doing this drill:

Distance in the Zone
Overview: Using the Distance in the Zone metric, hitters can determine when their barrel is entering and leaving the hitting zone.  The longer the barrel stays in the hitting zone, the better chance the player has to make consistent, solid contact.  This is clearly depicted in the 3D viewer as the blue portion of the swing path.

Optimal Ranges by Age:
• U10-14: Good is 29-32 inches
• U15-18: Good is 31-34 inches
• College-Pro: Good is 33-37 inches

Coaching Insights:
• Having a swing that maintains a good Distance in The Zone gives the batter a better chance of making contact with the pitch. It also means the swing is “more forgiving” 
• Having a good Distance In The Zone can account for small errors in timing because there is more “space” for the batter to make contact and still put the ball in play.
• This metric can help coaches identify loopy swings based on how early the barrel enters the zone and if there is a ‘hard-turn’ coming out of the zone.
• Additionally, based on where contact is most often made, it can help identify if a hitter is having issues with timing up the pitch.

Hand Cast Distance 
Overview: Hand Cast Distance measure starts when the hitter gets to the load position.  From that point when the bat starts forward acceleration, it measures how far the knob of the bat travels away from that point…measured in inches.  This control metric is important because it shows a hitter’s ability to stay inside the ball instead of swinging around the ball.

Optimal Ranges by Age:
• U10-14 – expect double digit numbers in the teens.
• U15-18 – the batter should try to be a 10 or lower. A good swing


Coaching Insights:
• Impact Momentum is a “smarter version” of barrel speed because it takes into account the size of the bat. If a kid swings a bigger bat at the same speed, when contact happens, the ball goes further.
• If you want to understand how improving Impact Momentum translates to the game – for every +1 a hitter adds to their Impact Momentum, it equates to roughly a 1.5 MPH increase in exit velocity. And every 1.5 MPH of exit velo translates to roughly 6-10 more feet of carry, depending on launch angle.  
• If you have a high-school kid playing on a full-size field, the magic Impact Momentum number to hit dingers is 27 + (with the right launch angle, of course). A well hit ball with an “IM” of 24 is caught well inside the warning track. Hit it with an IM of 27+ and it is out of the park.



For more Tech in Baseball videos, click here.


Diamond Kinetics is the market leader in mobile motion technology and information that enables player development, superior equipment fitting, objective scouting and recruiting, and engagement-driven entertainment.


 Side Toss
(7/12/2019)
 
   

Side Toss


Tech in Baseball
Presented with Diamond Kinetics


Skill Set: Hitting
Difficulty Level: Medium
Number of Athletes and Coaches: 1-2 athletes and 1 coach, or 2 athletes as partners
Average Time to Complete: 5 minutes
Equipment Required: Bucket of baseballs, bats, helmets 

Goal: Focus on loading, staying behind the ball, and hitting the ball up the middle 

Description of the Drill: 
• Hitter sets up even with the plate, while partner kneels on the other side of the plate about 8 feet away
• Partner tosses a ball to the front part of the plate
• Hitter should load, stay behind the ball, and make contact with the ball just in front of the front hip.
• Partners switch after 10 swings

Using Diamond Kinetics SwingTracker Sensor and mobile App - the following metrics and tools can help you measure your swing and see improvement when doing this drill:

Max Acceleration 
Overview: This is the maximum acceleration the bat experiences during a swing. To be clear, acceleration is not how fast the bat is moving; that’s barrel speed. Acceleration determines how quickly a hitter can reach that top speed. Great bat acceleration is in the DNA of elite hitters

Top 10% of Age Groups: 
• U10 Players: 25 G’s +
• U12 Players: 32 G’s +
• U14 Players: 35 G’s +
• U16 Players: 38 G’s +
• U18 Players: 42 G’s +
• D1 College:   49 G’s +


Coaching Insights:
• Max Acceleration tells coaches & scouts if a player can get the bat up to speed in a shorter time, allowing them to… 1) wait longer to recognize the pitch 2) decide what to do 3) And still have the ability to achieve their goal.
• This is a high-level metric that can sometimes stand apart from Max Barrel Speed and Impact Momentum. Max Accel requires all parts of the swing to sequence together, achieving that ‘snap’ of the bat that indicates great acceleration.
• You’ll often hear people say, ‘when that kid hits, it sounds different.” This metric is the science behind that old adage.  

Max Barrel Speed 
Overview: Using Barrel speed, hitters can know the maximum speed of the bat’s barrel during their swing.  It’s measured in miles per hour, so it’s easy to understand and measure improvement over time.  Higher barrel speed is the main factor in producing high exit velocity after contact so the ball goes further… faster

Top 10% of Age Groups: 
• U10 Players: 49mph +
• U12 Players: 54mph +
• U14 Players: 58mph +
• U16 Players: 63mph +
• U18 Players: 69mph +
• D1 College:   72mph +

Coaching Insights:
• This is the maximum speed of the bat’s barrel during a swing, at a point 20% from the tip of the bat (i.e. the sweet spot). It is the main factor in producing high exit velocity when the ball is hit. It greatly affects both the distance and speed at which the ball travels after impact
• Keep in mind that hitters need to “square the ball up” to maximize ball exit velocity.
• Increasing barrel speed is an important goal. Improvement should be measured over time to see if there is real physical and/or swing-mechanic growth. 
• Mechanics are important, but so is size & strength. So when thinking about a kid’s projectability, keep in mind if a player is not done growing yet.

For more Tech in Baseball videos, click here.


Diamond Kinetics is the market leader in mobile motion technology and information that enables player development, superior equipment fitting, objective scouting and recruiting, and engagement-driven entertainment.