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“The best hitters keep their bat in the hitting zone longer than everyone else.”
If you’ve been around the game long enough, you’ve heard this or something along the same lines before. In a related note, one of the hitting problems I hear about and see the most in aspiring ballplayers is the inability to drive the ball to the opposite field or even hit the ball to the opposite field period. Very few things drive me as crazy as when I watch a player take batting practice and pull EVERY single pitch… especially when most of those are ground balls in the 5.5 or 3.5 holes (between SS and 3B for righties and between 1B and 2B for lefties).
Keeping the bat in the hitting zone longer is not only going to allow you to hit the ball all over the park, but it allows you to hit the ball hard even if you are a bit fooled on a pitch. The question then becomes “How do I work on keeping my bat in the zone longer?”
Today we are invited into the living room of Tampa Bay Rays’ Drew Sutton to learn about his favorite hitting drill that answers this question.
Drew hit over .300 in limited time with the Boston Red Sox in 2011 and after starting 2012 in AAA with the Braves, he was traded to the Pirates for a few minutes before being traded again to the Tampa Bay Rays. A few days later Rays’ manager Joe Madden penciled Sutton into the clean-up spot for the Rays. He responded by going 2-4 with 2 RBIs in their 5-4 victory.
Many thanks to Drew Sutton for this quick video about his favorite hitting drill that helps him keep his bat in the hitting zone as long as possible.