Thursday, April 15, 2010


An article in ESPN magazine on new Chicago Cubs' hitting instructor, Rudy Jaramillo, was interesting because the San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals also have new hitting coaches. It appears that teams are trying to get as much bang for their buck as possible and to avoid any more finger pointing as to the acquisitions they made that may not be developing into the kind of production they had hoped to receive.

With Jaramillo, a key project will be Alfonso Soriano. He has joined the Cubs after spending the past 15 seasons with the Texas Rangers.

Jaramillo has a simple system that is so simple he says it took him 20 years to come up with the Five Simple Steps.

Every hitter has a different way of getting started, holding his hands, whatever. But everyone has to apply the same fundamentals. That's the basis of the five steps: establish a rhythm (stay loose before the pitcher releases the ball); see the ball out of the pitcher's hand; get separation (the hands go back and the front comes down); stay square (keep the front shoulder closed and let the hips lead the swing); and transfer weight back to front.

Says Jaramillo, "A hitter learns how to sync that together and it becomes an easy, systematic way of teaching the swing."

(Giants' Mark DeRosa was under Jaramillo's tutelage at Texas)

(thanks to ESPN mag article by Jeff Bradley)

Kevin Marquez