5 Ways to Improve Your Approach at The Plate


Everybody remembers the first time they stepped up to the plate, but do you remember what was going through your mind? Teaching plate approach to young hitters I one of the most important aspects of the game when it comes to hitting. And, contrary to popular belief, you shouldn’t be up there with the only thought of “I have to get a hit” or “I’m just going to swing really hard and see what happens”.


At the most fundamental level, having a good plate approach is no more complex than staying within yourself and swinging at good pitches in the strike zone. At a more complex level, the approach changes with each situation. Are there runners in scoring position? Do I need to put the ball on the ground to move someone over? Do I need to really drive something deep to get this go ahead run across the plate? Regardless of what the situation calls for, here are 5 tips that you can take with you to help with your success at the plate.


  1. Stay LOOSE!

Any hitter that goes up to the plate needs to be in an athletic stance and relaxed. Any tension at the plate makes for a bad at-bat. Be sure to take a deep breath and lose all tension when you step into the box.

  1. NEVER Swing for the Fences.

The most common mistake that young players make is going up to the plate and trying to do too much. The best thing you can do is have a level head, square up the ball and get on base. Don’t worry, the homers will come!

  1. Time the pitcher and his release points.

Think of the on-deck circle as your study session and the batter’s box as the test. Watching the pitcher and timing his release points on his fastball, off-speed, etc. This will better prepare you when it’s your time to shine at the plate.

  1. Know the situation.

When it’s your turn to bat, be sure you are aware of the situation you’re in. That means knowing how many outs, the score of the game, where your runners are, and what the count is. Make sure to take your sign and do your best to have a productive at bat!


We’ve all heard the quote before: ‘Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” That quote still holds true. Going up to the plate with the fear of failure is digging you in a hole to begin with. Go up there with the mentality that you can hit anything the pitcher throws. Expect success and adjust to the rest!