And another thing. Many here have suggested that perhaps he might have hit better by pulling the ball to his power field, and by cutting his stroke, he might have lessened his value as a hitter.
This might sound like a reasonable argument, and if I didn't know what I know, I might be open to it. But I know better. Ted was a student of hitting. And he was very tight with Ty Cobb, his good pal. Ty showed him how he could go to LF, WITHOUT CUTTING HIS STROKE IN ANY WAY.
Mr. Cobb was also a student of hitting. And his record proves he was the most valuable, effective, astute hitting coach who ever lived. Taught Heilmann, Simmons, Cochrane, Dykes, O'Doul, Manush, Flagstad, Fothergill
, Wingo, Haney, Fonseca, and tons of others. Ty was the only known hitter who could hit murderous line drives down the LF line, as a -handed hitter, on an inside pitch.
Here is how he did it, and what he showed to Ted. When he noticed that there was a hole in LF, or the LFers was shading him too far to CF, he'd crowd the plate. Of course, that would invite the pitcher to come hard inside, to drive him back off the inside corner. Simple, old-fashioned ball.
But here's the twist. Ty would crowd the plate, inviting the brush-back, and knowing he was going to get it on the very next pitch. When the pitcher came in with that hard inside pitch, Ty would, while the pitcher was winding up, subtly, unnoticeably, move his back foot towards the 1st base dugout. He'd swivel his body alignment to where he was almost facing the 3rd base dugout. He was then so re-aligned, his back was facing the pitcher, instead of his right shoulder.
And in that position, he could take his full cut, not cutting his stroke whatsoever, and whistle that inside pitch down the LF foul line.
One would have thought that sharp-eyed observers would have picked up on his trick. But they didn't. He pulled it over and over again, and they never caught on. Maybe they couldn't believe he could actually do it, and never noticed how he'd subtly shifted his feet and swiveled his body alignment. Ty only did that at the very last moment, and most people were watching the pitcher deliver the ball, and not studying Ty while he awaited the pitch.
And that is what Ty showed Ted. Ted, who was supposed to be such a smart hitter. Smart my greasy butt! He could have improved his performance many points if he had the humility to follow a few of Ty's simple, but brilliant hitting tips.
And that is why I posted so over the top on Ted. I had my reasons. Always do.Bill Burgess at Baseball Guru.comBRBRBRFever Members Photo Gallery: