FanPost

Should baseball teams have more than one hitting coach?

In particular, the question I'm getting at is "Does Kevin Seitzer know enough about hitting for power to train Billy Butler to be the best hitter he can be?" 

I'm sure that someone, somewhere in the baseball universe has pondered this topic before, but I haven't come across it.

You wouldn't expect a single NBA coach to train both centers AND guards, so why would we expect one hitting coach to train both a power hitter such as Billy Butler AND speedy, low-power hitters such as Dyson/Maier/Blanco?  While I think Kevin Seitzer is perfectly fine as a hitting coach in general, his career .404 SLG and average of about 7 HR per season make me second guess whether he can really put himself in Billy Butler's shoes when trying to analyze and coach him.  Seitzer's season high was .470 SLG and 15 HR at age 25; Butler can already do that in his sleep - how is Seitzer going to help him get to the next level?

Maybe there are more coaches focused on hitting that I realize, but it seems like a hitting coach can only know so much from his personal experience as a coach and/or hitter.  Should the main hitting coach's role be more like an offensive coordinator in football - setting the general philosophy while monitoring the specific "position" coaches and player development?

Another step further would be to have a left- and right-handed hitting specialist.  Yes, both righties and lefties deal with same- and opposite-handed pitchers, but hitting from the left side is just different from hitting from the right.  For one, you're a step closer to first base.  Pulled hits go toward first/left field, which might not matter for a slow guy like Billy Butler but might for a fast player like Maier.  Whether these matter isn't really clear, but I would think that someone who went through the majors as a left-handed batter could at least speak from experience to developing left-handed hitters.

Maybe we think the majors is too late for any real coaching to take, but I'm not sold on that.  Some players come up in their young 20's, a time that coaching is certainly still important.  Also, hitting ML pitchers is definitely different than hitting A, AA, and AAA pitchers, no matter what age a player finally makes the majors.

At least this year we didn't have a repeat of the batting practice net.  But why not have another coach to work with a young, developing, power hitter like Billy Butler, someone who knows what it's like to weigh 240 and how to use that power?  I guess if Butler gets past 30 HR this year then I'll take that back.

(Of course if these specific coaches already exists then I'll take my noob-looking post back to my mom's basement.)

This FanPost was written by a member of the Royals Review community. It does not necessarily reflect the views of the editors and writers of this site.

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