Barrel Lag Seen in Bonds' Swing
I agree that Gwynn is off base about the lead arm pull supplying the power. But I feel like a big aspect of Bonds success is that he does what you point out to be a "long swing". To me he is getting into the hitting area early which gives huge consistency. You save getting on plane until you are out over the stride foot. That will be powerful but inconsistent. As long as the swing is truly powered by the hips then the bat on plane as early as possible is a big must. Granted, most don't truly swing with their hips/core and therefore getting on plane early will be weak, but it is the ideal.
Swing Smarter Response:
I couldn't have said it better myself. I don't know why this is so hard for "Down and Through" coaches to get since we can see it happening in elite swing slow motion video analysis.
Ahem, well, I was stiff necked too on the subject not too long ago. Thanks to Chas Pippitt and Jaime Cevallos, I was missing what constitutes a "long" swing versus a long powerful swing, or barrel lag versus barrel drag...the latter being the no-no.
What we see with barrel drag (the evil twin) is a player's back elbow races past the back hand, while the front arm straightens reflecting a stiff arm affect.
This acts like a parachute to bat speed, and should be avoided like the plague.
Bat lag is when we see "0" change in position of the arms from setup-to-slot-to-impact, and the barrel enters the Impact Zone early (and unlike barrel drag, the back elbow stays behind the the back hand).
It isn't until we get through the ball that the top hand gently pushes the barrel away from the body.
The bottom line is, the hips and core move the hands and arms into position, NOT the other way around.
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