For many youth baseball players, hitting a home run is a dream come true. But getting there takes time, practice, and dedication. It starts with hitting ground balls and gradually progresses to line drives and, eventually, towering fly balls that clear the outfield fence. Along the way, young hitters learn proper technique, develop their strength and timing, and build the confidence to swing for the fences. Let's take a closer look at the journey from hitting grounders to hitting home runs, and how one young player's development led him to become a home run hitter.
See the journey in the video below:
5th Grade February 2020
Meet Grayson, a 5th-grade baseball player who started training in February 2020. He had always enjoyed playing baseball with his friends, but he wanted to take his skills to the next level. On February 12, 2020, I met Grayson for his first assessment. He came in with the ability to hit the ball hard for his age (65 mph) but he was only hitting the ball an average distance of 54ft. In his assessment, he was hitting 60% of his batted balls on the ground. I expressed to the family that Grayson had great bat speed for his age and with dedicated practice and swing improvements he could become a power hitter.
COVID March 2020
Ironically, the best thing that happened for Grayson was the COVID pandemic. Youth sports and practically everything else shut down so Grayson consumed his free time with training. This is the key mistake most players make - they don't dedicate time to make the necessary changes and are consumed with playing in too many leagues/games. The shutdown of sports gave Grayson the opportunity to practice diligently, day after day, and he gradually began to see improvement. Grayson was training with me on average 2x per week from March 2020 - August 2020. Grayson did not enjoy it in the beginning. I can remember he told his dad it felt "uncomfortable" and he didn't want to do it anymore. After a conversation, they agreed to continue training. Becoming comfortable, with the uncomfortable is key to growth!
He started getting comfortable with his swing and hitting more line drives and fly balls. Eventually, he hit his first home run. The ball sailed over the fence and Grayson was ecstatic. From that day on, he continued to work hard and developed a reputation as a home run hitter. With an adequate assessment, a plan for improvement, and thanks to his own determination, Grayson transformed his hitting game from ground balls to home runs.
Grayson is currently an 8th grader participating on his high school JV baseball team. He has bat speed in the mid-60s with BBCOR -3 and has an exit velocity in the mid-80s. On April 6, Grayson hit his first JV home run, over 350ft!
Grayson's journey from hitting only ground balls to becoming a home run hitter is a testament to the power of hard work, determination, and quality coaching. Through dedicated practice and perseverance, Grayson was able to overcome his hitting limitations and unlock his full potential. Grayson's story is an inspiration to any young baseball player who dreams of hitting it big. With the right training and mindset, anything is possible. Who knows what Grayson's next feat on the baseball diamond will be? One thing is for sure: he'll continue to work hard and give it his all, just like he did on his journey to becoming a home run hitter.