THE HOME RUN CONUNDRUM
It is wrong that a young hitter should be trying or expecting to hit home runs, and any hitting coach that is teaching kids to hit home runs should have a serious think about what he is doing to the long-term development of his players.
Hitting home runs is great, however home run hitters also have a tendency to strike out a lot due to the very nature of the home run swing. Ultimately, increased strikeouts are detrimental to a young hitter’s mental development in the game of baseball.
Strikeouts are mentally draining, even for the most experienced hitters.
Teaching hitting methods that reinforce power and home runs will more than likely correlate to increased strikeouts and a lower batting average. Alternatively, teaching the value of line drives at a young age will help nurture a hitter through the development stage of his baseball swing.
Generally, line drives develop into home runs over time. In fact, it is more than likely a hitter will never develop into a home run hitter. When you look at your average baseball lineup, how many hitters would you consider true home run hitters? Maybe 2 or 3 tops. So, why are 80% of hitters trying to be something that they will never be (a home run hitter)?
THE LINE DRIVE IS MAKING A COMEBACK
If you have watched the past few World Series, it wasn’t the home run hitting teams that win, it has been the “line-drive/good 2 strike hitting teams” who come out on top. In fact, during the majority of the playoffs home run hitting teams are shut down (New York Yankees Syndrome). Meanwhile, the teams with the solid line drive approach have the most success. Especially against tough pitching.