Keys to becoming a Succesful Hitter
There are some fundamental keys to becoming a successful hitter in baseball. Firstly, visualize that you have the ability to hit any pitcher. If you walk up to the plate and do not feel confident that you can hit a good pitcher you will be easily intimidated and will not be able to hit worth a darn.
The other part of the mental side of hitting is patience. Many pitchers do not have great control so there is no point in helping them out by swinging at balls. Develop your own mental strike zone. Swing at pitches within it and stay away from pitches outside of it. Some pitches, like good breaking balls, are tough to gauge though.
That brings me to the other aspect of hitting, which is taking time away from a live game where you can practice and develop your swing. If you want to be a good hitter you will have to cut out many extra curricular activities and head for the batting cages. In my projection, an hour and a half three or four times a week is an ample amount of time to spend honing your swing. If you have access to someone like myself who can pitch hard fastballs, and sharp breaking balls, practicing three or four times a week is even better than the batting cages. The premise behind this theory is that if the pitcher you practice against is better than the level of pitching you will be seeing in games you will be ahead of most other hitters and will be licking your chops at most pitchers.
Keep your swing short. Avoid a long home run type cut when hitting as it will not serve you well in most hitting situations. If you want to hit for averages you need a short, compact, and level swing. You should also focus on hitting the ball to the opposite field as it is great practice for the development of young hitters. If you want it bad enough you can achieve it.
Study the great hitters in baseball and watch them as much as you can. Ichiro Suzuki is a great example. It is said that he could probably hit 40 homers a year if he wanted to, but he chooses to win the batting title and have the best batting average year in and year out. His swing is short, but very effective. He can spray the ball to all fields. He routinely passes 200 hits year after year with ease.
Get in shape. You will need to keep your body in good shape but not necessarily with weights, though they are only helpful in moderation. Running is the best workout tool because it equally works all of the muscles you will need to gain bat speed and be a good hitter. As I mentioned earlier, never be intimidated at the plate, and visualize preferred outcomes.
Waiting for a good strike to hit is also very important. It is unnecessary to make things easy for the pitcher by swinging at balls. It will just put you down in counts. Focus on your hitting zone and do not help out the pitcher. You will be the one laughing in the end and the scouts will be at your doorstep.
Finally, buy bats of your very own and swing in front of a mirror, if you have one. You will gain incredible knowledge of your swing and can tinker with it as necessary. Swinging at home, even when you are not at hitting practice, will help you further your bat speed and your knowledge of your own swing. Visualize your preferred outcomes and put your practice in motion and you have a great chance of being a successful hitter.