10 year old hitting batters


#1

My son is LH pitcher who is 10 years old. Going into yesterday’s game he had pitched 8 innings walking only 1 batters and striking out 20. His problem is that he has hit 7 kids. 5 of the kids he hit he was 0-2 on.

Yesterday he walked a kid to lead off the inning and then hit the next 2 kids and started to fall apart. He is not real wild but he just has these few pitches that go straight at the batters feet.

After yesterday I can tell his confidence is really shaky because he does not want to hurt anyone.

Any thoughts on how to handle this? I would love to find a cure to what he does wrong on these few pitches.


#2

He’s losing focus and looking at the batter and not the glove.

He may be trying to NOT hit the batter by looking at the batter (e.g. trying to throw away from the batter), but the ball will tend to go where the eyes go.

He needs to ignore the batter and absolutely focus on the glove.


#3

That’s tough with the young ones. In time, he needs to learn that hitting batters comes with the territory and that it’s the batter’s job to get out of the way. In the mean time, if there is something mechanically that’s causing control issues, that can probably be improved fairly quickly. But it’s tought to do without seeing him. Got any video you can post?

Otherwise, the only thing I can think to say is that when the glove arm flies open and the shoulders rotate early, that usually results in the throwing arm lagging behind and the ball sailing in on a same-handed batter.

EDIT: Chris’s comment is a good possibility too.


#4

Thanks for the response guys.

It is frustrating to have just a few pitches destroy his confidence. I will try to get some video of him tonight and post it for you.

Thanks again.


#5

Another problem is that with little guys in the batter’s box, they tend to turn their back to the pitch if it’s anywhere close to them, and step towards the catcher, i.e., they don’t know how to get out of the way, and actually step into the pitch. Some of them are probably getting hit by a strike over the inside corner!
With my guys I have the catcher set up over the outside corner in this situation. We try to get the pitchers all tuned to focus on the catcher’s glove from day one. This has helped minimize hbp’s because they’re trained to focus correctly. It’s also nice that in our league the umpire is supposed to give the pitchers one ball’s width on each side of the plate. When done correctly, it’s fine. Sometimes, though, the ump gives the pitcher too much on the outside, and the batters can’t reach the pitch, but that’s another story…
10 yo’s are tough, though. Their psyche is so fragile. I know you’re staying positive with him, and from a Dad, that’s really the best medicine!

Cheers;

O