Baseball Hitting Timing: The Front Foot Doesn’t Need To Get Down Early

In case you missed it, Robinson Cano hammered a 1-1 slider off Wade Davis in the 10th inning to put the AL team ahead 2-1.

Here's what you can take away from Cano's Homer.

1.  The Front Foot Doesn't NEED To Be On The Ground at Release Point

Getting the front foot down when the pitcher is at release point is an extremely popular strategy when it comes to timing.  The truth is getting the front foot down at release point is very early and does not work for some hitters.  However, not every hitter (see Cano pictured below) works best when the front foot is down early. 

Cano was on time for a fastball on this swing.  At release point he has just started to get into his stride movement.  

While getting the front foot down early can be a queue that works for some hitters keep in mind that this queue will not work for every hitter.  And no, Cano doesn't "get away" with this because he's a MLB player.  I see players in little league games use the same timing method as Cano is using in this picture.  

Cano finally gets his front foot down much later than most hitters are taught. 

I dive deep into timing specific hitting drills inside my elite timing program. 

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2.  Maintaining Bat Lag Goes A Long Way In Generating Power

See what I did there?  I'm laughing as I'm typing this. HA!

Back to the point.

Cano was on time for a fastball, but had to manipulate his timing to make the proper adjustment.  In the clip below but you can see that he's doing somewhat of an "backside out" swing, but still hits a line drive dinger.

This is an example of Cano's hips when he is on time with a fastball and actually gets a fastball.  

Typically players will lose their bat lag when their backside bails out and moves away from the baseball as they start the swing.  The clip of Cano bailing out shows how important it is to maintain proper bat lag in the swing especially when the hitter is fooled.  

When the hitter is fooled, but they still maintain proper bat lag then they still have a chance to hit the ball hard.  

I teach hitters how to properly maintain bat lag even when they are fooled in
my fundamental mechanics & timing programs

3a.  Robinson Cano's Pitch Recognition Skills

Cano did a tremendous job at recognizing slider early enough to make the adjustment and keep his hands back to maintain bat lag.  If Cano hadn't recognized the pitch early enough then he wouldn't have been able to make the proper adjustment.  

The key to dominating breaking balls and other off-speed pitches is to recognize it early enough to make the correct adjustment.

3b.  Robinson Cano Is Very Good At Hitting Baseballs 

Yep, it's confirmed.  He is really, really good at hitting baseballs.  

And based on his celebration with teammate Taylor Motter, he has great hair flip mechanics as well. 

About the Author Connor Powers

Connor Powers is a former Professional Baseball Player (Padres Organization 2010-2013) who has a passion for teaching others how reach their goals in the game of baseball. Since 2012 Coach Powers he has had his YouTube videos viewed over 3.3 Million times and has over 24,000 subscribers to his YouTube channel. His specialties are maximizing bat speed, improving batting average, and taking hitters from average to elite.

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