Youth Player and Bat Question March 25 2015, 0 Comments

Hello Coach
My son is starting little league (after a few years of T-ball) and I am racking my brain during his first year struggles -- which have been hard on him. He's always held a hockey stick left-handed (as I played lefty too), so I had him in T-ball hold the bat/hit left-handed too and did pretty well hitting this way (a good, contact hitter). But unfortunately, he looks woefully over matched hitting lefty in little league. Admittedly, he's a smallish boy, but it seems he has very little bat control. Obviously he's not hitting the pitching machine at all. Since I played ice hockey as a lefty, but played baseball batting righty, I'm wondering if I have him hitting from his wrong side? I've toyed with him trying righty, but since he's never hit that way, he worse off. I just fell like I may have made a mistake and could be doing him a disservice but now I'm not sure what to do? Any thoughts you have on this I'd love to know and would appreciated it greatly. He's incredibly discouraged and I fear he may give up due to all his failures.  Thanks...

Dear Dad

I don't think you've done a disservice to your son, is just a matter of maturity and if he's used to playing hockey left-handed then leaving as a left-handed batter and he will learn. I would look first and foremost at equipment I'm not normally a big fan of blaming the equipment but as I've coached my own grandsons T-ball team and coach pitch I found that they have to have a bat that they can control so make sure you have the right length but more importantly the lightweight so that he can control it during the swing.  Then you will help him a great deal if you will work with him on soft toss drills, tee work, and easy underhand pitching so that he can swing and make contact and developed a good swing.  It's my advice for you to use plastic balls during this time that way you don't chase them and he will not get you hurt by hitting them back up the middle.

Coach Arnald Swift