Winter is my least favorite season of the year. Besides not being able to enjoy baseball, because I live in Pennsylvania, I have to brave snow and cold temperatures for at least three months of the year. However, this winter has been much milder than I can remember. We’ve had some light snowfalls, but nothing that’s caused any transportation problems. In fact, many districts in the area haven’t even had a two hour delay yet this year.
The last time I hit was in early to mid December and I hadn’t picked up a bat in weeks. I wanted to practice a little bit so when the summer comes I won’t be awful.
For my birthday last year Amy bought me a pitching machine. It pitches golf ball sized wiffle balls at speeds of up to 60 MPH.
The machine can also do soft toss, or throw curves, sliders, and cutters. I used it to train for the Pirates in door batting practice session by putting it about 30 feet away, setting it at 60mph, and just trying to make contact. As a result, in the cage later that day, I didn’t miss a pitch.
I tried to pick up where I left off, setting up the machine maybe 30-40 feet away.
I used the corner of the tennis court as my home plate.
The first round didn’t go so well. I took mighty swings, trying to hit the ball over the fence that would be equivalent to left field.
But I was too rusty and the machine was too fast. In fact, my swing felt like a mess. I’d spent the winter lifting weights, so my swing didn’t feel fluid anymore.
I turned the pitching machine down to a lower speed, and began to finally began to make some solid contact.
Ater about 2.5 rounds and 250 swings later, I packed up the stuff and Olivia, Amy and I went for a walk through the park to enjoy the nice weather.
Including Olivia’s first ever experience of seeing a stream.
I hope the rest of you are enjoying the warm weather, since most of the country has had a really mild winter.
There’s only 64 more days until Opening Day, 17 days until pitchers and catchers report to spring training, and 4 more days to win this Matt Wieters shirt.