Part 6: Tee Routine

Tee Routine. Here is our full and recommended tee routine for you to take and do hopefully each day that you go to get your work in. We recommend you start every hitting session with this tee routine. Most professionals start with something similar to this every single day that they hit. As we go through this routine, it’s very important that you place the tee in the right spot. When preparing to drive the ball the other way, the placement of the tee is HUGE. When a professional talks to a younger hitter about their tee routine, the tee is almost never in the right place. This just causes really bad swing mechanics it’s not good! So make sure to execute tee placement as we go through the routine, it’s clearly defined in each section.

      1. Warmup: What you didn’t see Albert or Freddie do is get a proper warm-up in. It didn’t make the video, but it’s something us professionals do every single day before we hit. Spend a little time before you start swinging the bat to do a small dynamic warmup to get the body moving. A few short jogs, shuffles, karaoke, butt kicks, high knees, a-skip, b-skip, arm circles, and a few arm and forearm stretches and you should be ready to go.
      2. Dry Swings: Get ready to hit by taking 5 or 10 dry swings easing into it.
      3. Middle (2-4 Rounds of 5): Start the tee routine by two or three rounds of 5 nice and easy driving the ball to the back net on a line. Make sure that you are adjusting the tee height each round to give yourself variety. Almost everybody recommends starting with the top of the zone and then easing down. For this we want to put the tee at the front edge of the plate and right down the middle. It’s not a bad idea to use a skinny trainer bat for these like this one: Marucci Training Stick
      4. Bottom Hand (2-4 Rounds of 5): Now we are ready to start with our one-arm drills. We usually always start with the bottom and and we usually always work on the bottom hand more than the top hand. More on that in a bit. Let’s dive into bottom hand:
        1. Place the tee middle-in and up in the zone, you’ll need the ball closer to your body because you’re about to choke way up.
        2. Choke up to the top of the grip, or use a short bat like this one: Link to a short bat
        3. Even though the ball is middle-in, hit the ball to the right side of the back net, ideally in the middle of the right side of the back net.
        4. Feel like you are really staying inside the ball just like Freddy and Albert talked about in the videos.
        5. We’ve heard it taught before that you are taking your bottom hand and “backhanding the Little Person.” That wasn’t us that said it, so don’t cancel us for it.
      5. Top Hand (1-2 Round of 5): As noted above, we don’t want to overdo it with top hand work on the tee. If you throw right and hit right, or if you throw left and hit left, then your top hand is your throwing arm. Lots of top hand work can be harmful for your throwing elbow but in moderation it’s fine. It’s very important to choke up to the top of your grip of this, or to use a short bat.
        1. Place the tee middle-in and up in the zone.
        2. Hit the ball to the right side of the back net.
        3. You want to feel like you are punching the pitcher with your palm up. To emphasize this I sometimes like to have players punch my hand out in front of home plate with their palm up from their hitting position.
      6. Deep Oppo (2-4 Rounds of 5): Now you should be fully warmed up and creating the proper bat path. For these we recommend using a heavy bat if you have something 2-5 ounces heavier than your game bat. If you don’t have one just use your game bat or a practice bat. We start with deep oppo because it’s easier to stay inside the ball when it’s deep so we want to keep creating that proper bat path and hitting the ball with true backspin wherever we hit it.
        1. Put the tee even with your belly button. You can use the plate if you stand in the same spot every time and you know where on the plate this spot is.
        2. Drive the ball on a line over the first base bag. If you are in the cage use the backline of the plate that’s the same line as the first base line.
      7. Out Front Oppo (2-4 Rounds of 5): This is where you basically want to follow what Freddie Freeman was talking about. Really have to emphasize staying inside the ball now that it’s more out front. For this the ball is usually set up at the front edge on the outside corner. Sometimes it’s good to work on one or two balls off the plate because the umpires call that pitch anyway.
        1. A younger hitter is going to tend to get around this ball and hit it up the middle or pull it because it’s more out front, we have to lead with our knob to the pitcher and continue to stay inside the ball.
        2. When we get to further into our tee routine we have to remember to square our shoulders to the pitcher. A lot of time when we do a lot of tee work, hitters tend to turn their shoulders to where the tee it’s not how we hit in the game. Every single swing off the tee you should look up at the imaginary pitcher and then react to the ball as if it were just pitched wherever it is on the tee.
      8. Finish with 5 or 10 to the back net on a line. You may be able to get through this whole thing twice if you are older and in better shape. 

Now onto the moving ball stuff!