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From Five O'Clock to Prime Time


Every team has that guy... That guy who rolls in during pre-game batting practice and puts on an absolute power display; lasers all over the field, effortlessly lifting the ball deep over the wall. Then, we don't see him again. He's not on the lineup card. What happens to that guy when the BP tarps are lifted and the portable cage is rolled away?

The simple answer is that he is still there, but all the work he put into developing that ridiculous power has been mitigated by his lack of preparation in other areas. Let's go ahead assume this hulk of a human has all the bat speed he needs to catch up to any fastball he is going to see. With great bat speed, an awesome bath and positing attack angles... what other factors are there? Well, there are lots, but let's focus on a couple we can control... pitch recognition and selection.

There is a monumental difference between seeing BP fastballs and exploding sliders. When we are seeing firm, flat fastball after firm, flat fastball, we get into a great rhythm and let our body go to work. What happens when the lights come on, though, is those firm, flat fastballs disappear, and we start seeing pitchers working the zone, changing speeds, and doing everything they can to keep you off balance. Don't let off-speed be your Kryptonite.

When it comes to being ready for the ensuing battle with the pitcher, the ability of a hitter to recognize pitches and determine ball-strike is paramount in getting into good counts and gaining the advantage. How do we work on it, though? We can only see so many live pitches in our preparation, because pitchers aren't throwing live sets every time we are looking to get some work in. Enter GameSense and their pitch recognition platform.

Based on science found in fundamental learning concepts, the GameSense Sports pitch recognition platform allows hitters to get hundreds, even thousands, of pitches worth of practice in their spare time. By recording both amateur and professional pitchers during live situations, they have cataloged numerous pitchers, their arm slots, deliveries, and arsenal to give you a variety of looks. This allows you to get both pitch and pitch location recognition practice, before you ever step into batter's box.

If you are looking for the upper-hand in the batter's box, put the work in to flip the count in your favor. As you can see in the graphic provided, the chances of you getting on base, and helping your team produce runs are better as you get into positive counts. Odds are, though, you didn't need a graphic to tell you that. You know that you are going to get better pitches, when a pitcher is behind in the count.

We firmly believe that putting in the time to be a great hitter is important, but we also believe that we need to consider the factors beyond bat speed and launch angle; every five o'clock hitter has those. For that five o'clock hitter to become a prime time hitter, he needs to have the right tools, which includes the ability to recognize pitches and determine balls from strikes.

If you have questions regarding the GameSense pitch recognition platform, feel free to reach out to us. We have an agreement with them to offer it to our customers, so let us help you elevate your game.


If you are interested in more information, please feel free to email us at Below is an image of how the platform looks. As you use it, you'll find it is almost like a video game for hitters.

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