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Great Hitting Chart To Help Scout During Pre-Game
By: Cindy Bristow
Wouldn’t it be great to know what the opposing hitters are likely to do against you before the game even starts? Scouting hitters is tough if you only see them hit soft-toss but check out a simple hitting chart to help you do just that!
Scouting would be easier if your opponents actually took an on-the-field batting practice before the game that included live pitching. But that’s not reality for most of you. Most teams aren’t allowed on the field before the game and have to take pregame hitting off of side toss. No problem, check out a way to still chart their hitters so you have some kind of defensive clue come game time.
Anytime you know your opponent ahead of time and can find out anything about their hitters it sure makes playing defense against them much easier. College coaches often have video on their opponents, or can watch them play on tv, or can call a coach and get a quick scouting report, but how many of you can do the same thing? Not many. Most of you are going into games blind and only have a few slim chances before a game to learn anything about your opponents.
It’s pretty common that most teams take their pregame hitting off the main field and over to the side someplace. It’s usually taken off of some kind of limited front toss (using whiffle balls) or from players hitting side toss. These are both very common forms of pre-game hitting and yet for some reason we don’t feel we can chart these opportunities.
Granted, these aren’t ideal scouting opportunities but I’d rather have some information on my opponents than none at all. So, I’ve come up with a simple hitting chart your players can use to scout your opponents during their Pre-Game Hitting.
The Pre-Game Hitting Chart is meant to be used by 1 or more players, coaches or parents who simply watch the opposition take whatever type of batting practice they take and then mark down what they see.
Once they fill out the top part of the chart listing the players Name (if they know it), Number, circle whether the hitter is Lefthanded, Righthanded or a Slapper, what uniform color the hitter is wearing (since lots of teams have lots of uniforms), what date it is and the location –the chart is then ready to be used to actually document how this player hits.
The completed Pre-Game Hitting Chart shows a bunch of dots now added to the chart and these dots have 2 different meanings:
I know there’s far more you could do to complicate this hitting chart, but the whole idea for this is to create something that’s easy to use and that allows you – or your players – to chart the opposing hitters as you watch them take their pre-game hitting practice using either front toss or side toss. Click this link to get your own blank version of the Pre-Game Hitting Chart.
I hope this helps you both expand your brain when it comes to trying to creatively solve a particular issue (like pre-game scouting), and also give you a way to gather information on your opponents to use for both pitch calling as well as defensive positioning.
For more help with charting, scouting and strategy issues check out the following:
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