Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Red Sox To Go From 'Pitch-Selectivity' To 'Pitch-Hunting'

No matter which big bat (if any) shows up under the Red Sox tree next Monday (or sooner), get ready for a significant change in Boston's approach to hitting. As pointed out by ESPN.com's Scott Lauber, Boston's hiring of pitching coach Tim Hyers (who previously toiled three seasons in their minor league system and worked for the Dodgers the last two years) presages a new batting mind-set. No longer will Red Sox hitters take the patient, grinding pitch-selectivity approach. They will now be pitch-hunting—looking to create a launch angle that's 15-30 degrees into the air—with a launch velocity of 95-100 MPH. This combination usually results in lots of home runs—something the Red Sox were last in the majors in during the 2017 season. It worked for the Dodgers and Astros last year—you know, the two teams that appeared in the World Series. And now, Boston has two guys in management (Hyers and manager Alex Cora) who were key parts of that Fall Classic experience.