Originally Posted August 24, 2012
Mike Trout and Bryce Harper are two of the most exciting young players I have seen in years. They both are very young with very special skills. Excellent fielders, have great speed and have strong arms. They both made the all star game. They both are such great athletes.
They are very different when it comes to their hitting statistics.
Mike Trout Bryce Harper
Height 6' 1 " 6' 3"
Weight 200 205
Games 102 101
At Bats 414 392
Average .345 .247
Home runs 24 12
RBI 72 37
Why such a big difference? Harper is hitting almost 100 points lower and has half the home runs and RBIs. Is Trout that much better? No, Trout uses his bat and body much better than Harper, and it really shows in their averages and production.
Trout uses his lower and upper body well together, in the right sequence, which allows him to generate the maximum amount of power that he then releases it into the ball. With using his body this way his bat comes into the hitting zone faster and and it allows the bat to stay in the zone and on the plane of the pitch for three to four feet. This means he doesn't need perfect timing to hit the ball consistently hard, this makes hitting so much easier. His bat is actually accelerating out through the ball which allows him to hit the ball harder and hit line drives much more often. He looks so relaxed and effortless because the way he uses his body. Like every great athlete he has true effortless power.
Harper uses his lower body the same way as Trout which is very athletic and generates so much power. The problem is the upper half of his body is doing the opposite of what Trout is doing. It isn't working well with the lower body at all. He is swinging hard, mainly with his arms, which means his bat is longer and slower to the hitting zone. His right arm extends as it pulls the bat, causing it to go out and then forcing him to pull it back in to the right. With his upper and lower body out of sequence he is losing much of his power. He can feel this and then tries to swing even harder to make up for the lost power but this makes it even worse causing him to pull out of the hitting zone even faster. His bat is in the hitting zone and on the plane of the pitch for only about one foot as opposed to Trout's three to four feet. He now needs perfect timing to hit the ball hard which makes hitting much tougher.
Harper's swing makes him very susceptible to pitches on the outside of the plate because he pulls the bat out of the hitting zone so fast. He is also susceptible to off speed pitches because with being slower to the hitting zone he has to start his swing earlier causing many more problems. This has really come to light the last two months. His last 45 games he is hitting only .214 with 4 home runs and 15 RBIs. He looks so tight at the plate because he is swinging so hard with his arms, he is giving so much effort to not hit the ball hard very often.
Harper is such a great athlete, he could become such a better hitter if someone knew how to help him get his lower and upper body to work together in the right sequence. This would allow his bat to come into the hitting zone faster and stay in there for at least three to four feet which would allow him to hit the pitches on the outside part of the plate much easier. He wouldn't have to start his swing earlier which would give him more time to recognize off speed pitches and hit them more consistently. He would then have the power he should have at his size by using his body to hit the ball rather than his arms. He could raise his average above .300 where it should be for a player of his ability because the bat would go forward through the ball rather than being pulled to the right around it way too fast.
I know what could help Bryce Harper become the hitter he knows he should be. With his ability it would be easy to show him how his upper and lower body can work so much better together. He would then feel how much more power it would provide in a much larger hitting zone. I t would give him a three to four foot error rate to hit the ball hard in rather than his current one foot area. I would be happy to work with him anytime.
If you would like to learn to use your body like Mike Trout is doing now call Mike Sedberry at 304-722-6393. When your body is working in the correct sequence it is amazing how hitting seems so much easier and you can consistently hit hard line drives. Call now and learn how you can have effortless power.