Holding the Bat: GRIP & Hand Position
Bat should be held in the fingers (not palms). To do this, put end of
bat on ground and lean handle on legs. Reach down and hold bat with
fingers- bring bat out and up in front.
Hands should then be brought toward back shoulder (over back foot). Hands should be a comfortable distance away from shoulder, at the top of the strike zone (high hands are important and is why many people are told to put the back elbow up- this moves hands up, but a high back elbow can create a hitch in higher level ball). All the angles of the arms should be near 90 degrees- elbows and between both forearms. Bat should be off shoulder, and not too upright (max 45 degree angle).
To test grip, players can be asked to put bat on shoulder, look down handle of bat and point with their pointer or pinky fingers- if the fingers are parallel and pointing up, grip is likely good; if fingers cross, the bat is being held in the palms (like a club). This grip may feel odd if player is not use to it. To experience the benefits, have player hold grip like a club and swing it down toward the ground (like an axe)- they will feel the wrists lock up and restrict range of motion… then have them grip bat in their fingers and try again- they will feel the increased flexibility of the wrist and range of motion with this grip. This additional wrist snap will improve power.