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See Ball Better Examples, Keep Eye On Ball Drills, Head Position In, Or Still Baseball & Softball Hitting Tips For Kids


Discover how to see the ball better with batting examples from this Mike Trout swing analysis.  Learn keep eye on the ball drills and head position in and still baseball or softball hitting tips for kids.

Mike Trout Video: Why Consistency Won’t Improve



Mike Trout: 3 Reasons Why Consistency Won't Improve

Posted to Hitting Performance Lab’s Facebook page…

…This three-part video series will analyze how to optimize vision, tracking, and timing.  This Part-1 video, featuring Mike Trout, will be unwrapping how the best mechanics in the world mean nothing without proper vision.  In this game, we live and die by how consistent we are.

In this post, we’ll go over:

  • Physically impossible to keep eyes on the ball,
  • How much and when head movement is okay, and
  • Building consistency with vision.

CLICK HERE for an interesting academic study on six elite female shot putters.  Results found head movement during rotation can influence the movements of the limbs and trunk.

Physically Impossible to Keep Eyes on the Ball

In a study by A. Terry Bahill, titled “Baseball Players Cannot Keep Their Eyes on the Ball”, his findings say this:

“We have shown that no one could keep his eye continuously on the ball as it flies from the pitcher to the plate.  For our professional athlete, the ball was always more than 2-degrees off his fovea before it came within 5-ft of the plate.  However, when the ball is off your fovea, you can still see with peripheral vision.  However, with peripheral vision, the ball would only appear as a white blur, you would not see details.”

The finding that was most interesting in the study, using University students as a control for the study, was:

“Most of our student subjects tracked the ball with either head movements alone or eye movements alone, but not both…After the ball crossed the plate, the students usually made large eye or head movements, whereas the gaze of the professional athlete was quite steady…The stance of our professional athlete was very repeatable.  At the beginning of the pitch, his head position was the same (within 1-degree) for each of the three experimental pitches we recorded.  When he was looking at the ball in the beginning of the experiment, his eyes were rotated 22-degrees to the left; his head was rotated left 65-degrees (yaw), was bowed down 23-degrees (pitch), and was tilted right 12-degrees (roll).”

The professional hitter in the study was right handed.

What’s interesting with hitters like Mike Trout, is that they have to use a bit of head and eye movement when tracking the incoming pitch.  Not one or the other. However, nobody on earth, EVER, has been proven to keep both eyes on a pitched ball continuously to home plate.

In the study, A. Terry Bahill said, in order to do that, the ball would have to be traveling at around 25-mph, in which case, it would NEVER reach home plate in softball or baseball.


How Much and When Head Movement is Okay

Olympic throwers move their heads forward (including Javelin, Discus, and Hammer).  Lacrosse players do too.  And so do Pitchers!

For a hitter like Mike Trout, forward head movement, dropping the “eye-line”,  are okay…until landing.  I say, get head movement out of the way early.  Mike Trout does strikeout quite a bit, which may be attributed to the dropping eye line.

The hitter told to “Sit back”, keeps the head still early, but moves it after the landing position and during the Final Turn.  This is not good for improving consistency.


Building Vision Consistency like Mike Trout

How-to improve consistency with vision:

  • Understand the swing is a “snapping towel” (forward first, then back),
  • Keep head in-line with spine,
  • Use the study finding parameters above, to know how much head and eye movement keeps consistency, and
  • Maintain a moderate swing tempo and relax the jaw (not over-swinging).

CLICK HERE for the Josh Hamilton Part-2 Video: Coaches Don’t Tell You This (About Timing)…

Joey Myers
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10 replies
  1. Patrick
    Patrick says:

    Informative lesson. Wondering if you could comment on whether or not Trout has unweighted his bat in the video. It looks like his bat is flat throughout the swing. Thanks

    • Joey Myers
      Joey Myers says:

      Hey Patrick, good question. Un-weighting the bat just means the hitter is using forward movement to get the swing started. So yes, Trout is un-weighting about when the pitcher starts his forward arm movement. I don’t teach my hitters to do pre-pitch barrel movement because they often get themselves into trouble trying to get the barrel back to the optimal angle at the Fight (landing) Position. Hamilton does this, and so did Ruth. But pre-pitch barrel movement isn’t necessary to un-weight the bat.

  2. Patrick
    Patrick says:

    Thanks Joey, I was thinking along the lines of Ted Williams notion of unweighted the bat, but I agree that unweighting the bat can/does happen regardless of bat angle. I enjoy your analysis.

    • Joey Myers
      Joey Myers says:

      I’m glad you’re enjoying the videos Patrick. The swing is a transfer of energy from the body to the barrel to the ball. Un-weighting takes a body at rest (potential energy) and turns it into a body in motion (kinetic energy). This makes swinging the bat much easier and more explosive, yes, regardless of bat angle 😉

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] CLICK HERE for a post I did analyzing Mike Trout’s swing titled, “Why Consistency Won’t Improve”.  I cited a study that found it’s a physical impossibility to continuously follow the ball to the plate (for both baseball and softball), with both eyes, unless the ball is traveling 21mph, in which case, it wouldn’t make it to EITHER plate. […]

  2. […] Above-all, be safe.   The truth about Josh Hamilton timing?  It takes reps, reps, and more reps.  CLICK HERE for Part-3 Matt Holliday: The Death Of Plate Discipline.  In case you missed Part-1 Mike Trout: Why Your Consistency Won’t Improve, CLICK HERE. […]

  3. […] below.  In case you missed Part-1 and 2 to the Vision, Tracking, and Timing video series, then CLICK HERE for Part-1, and CLICK HERE for […]

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