Oct. 2, 2020

A Deeper Dive in Strategic Baseball Advantage Process Level 3 - Strategic Advantage Mindset

A Deeper Dive in Strategic Baseball Advantage Process Level 3 - Strategic Advantage Mindset

Transcirption of Podcast Episode: A Deeper Dive Into Strategic Advantage Baseball Process - Strategic Advantage Mindset

Geoff Rottmayer Speaking:

On today's show, we're going to take a deeper dive into level three of our Strategic Advantage Baseball Process - Strategic Advantage Mindset.

Hey guys, welcome back to Strategic Baseball Podcast. Today, Darrell and Geoff want to take a deeper dive into level three of the Strategic Advantage Baseball Process, which is Strategic Advantage Mindset. Now we're going from you, and what you know about yourself to your opponent, and what you know about them and how you prepare against them. 

Geoff and Darrell, here and we help baseball player to get to the next level with a strategic advantage so that they can play with supreme confidence and get the best players at any level. 

In every episode, we promise to deliver value on the strategic side of player development to help your players compete with play just as good if not better than them. 

Today, we're going to take a deeper dive into level three of our Strategic Advantage Baseball Process, which is Strategic Advantage Mindset. This is the level where we take our competitive advantage and our unique hitting pitching skill and develop a strategy against our opponent. 

Darrell is a pitching strategist. Geoff a hitting strategist. And this is a strategic baseball podcast. If you are interested in joining our circle, head over to strategic-baseball.com which you can find in our show notes and submit your email that way you always get a reminder each time we release a new episode. Also get weekly tip from us, and a PDF transcription and visual of the previous episode, and much more. 

If you are a player, parent or coach, who is interested in learning more about how the Strategic Advantage Baseball Process works for you and your unique situation, please email me at geoff@athletic-mission.com or Darrell at dc@starttpitching.com you can find that in the show note and we would love to arrange a time to speak with you and see how we can help. So Darrell I'm gonna go ahead and let you get started.

Darrell Coulter Speaking:

Yes, this is the cool part man This to me is is kind of the transition from what you know, we talked about the ups of it competitive advantage, developing your unique hitting or pitching skills kind of set you apart kind of you know, honestly, it's what you take to the game. And so now as we move into the third level, which is really what we call the strategic advantage mindset, and and that's what we train guys here at Athletic Mission Baseball Academy in Tulsa Oklahoma, to understand that no matter what it is whether it's a competitive advantage, practice and skill, whether it's a unique pitching skill or hitting skill, if it does not give you a strategic advantage, then we really got to sit down and think about why we're doing it and what we're doing. And so that's where we came up with this strategic advantage mindset process. So really, when we talk about how do we have clarity about what we're doing, why we're doing it, and about our opponents? Do we understand, you know what the coach's hidden philosophy is, or the overall pitching philosophy. And the way we break it down here at Athletic Mission, we start talking about strategy, we start talking about me, what what do they know about me as we start trading? Because I think too often we tried to look at strength versus strength. Instead of looking at what is that opponent know about me? What do they think about what my pitching skills are? How much how I command my pitches. And so once you understand that piece of what they probably understand about you, then we can focus on them. Okay, overall, as a team, does the coach have a philosophy? Do they have a first inning philosophy? Are they just trying to get me to pile up pitches on our starters and get to our bullpen kind of what is the overall team philosophy? And then we call it the him now we start breaking down individual hitters, kind of what we know about them and the cues and clues that they give us about, you know, what are they thinking what is their strategy versus me and and again, some of this can seem a little deep, but this is the chess match that the best players in the world love and and it's also the coolest part of it. Because once you get past the self confidence piece, 

I call it the up Sir, do you believe in your pitching skills? And have you mastered some skills that we could actually use to create a strategy with then when when it comes to crossing over that white line and happened to go play under extreme pressure in a real baseball game. Now all these practice fields and all this stuff stuff that I prepared for honestly becomes what I call high pressure skills, that what are you going to look like when you have to pitch under extreme pressure. And so all most of the calls I get a lot of them from my colleagues and profiles, today and in the past are not competitive advantage and mastery issues. Now they end up affecting mastery, because they don't really have a strategy. So they are consistently tinkering with their mechanics, and really screwing with the things that they're really good at. And it really has a usually a detrimental effect on them, Geoff. But once we can kind of read re steer them and kind of guide them back to Hey, man, let's talk about what is literally your decision making process. When you're standing on the rubber, you're looking in and getting the sign from the catcher, what is your decision making process? And that's the first question I ask everybody that I work with, because it will tell me volumes about who they are as a fissure. And if they start saying, Hey, I don't call any pitches to coach calls every pitch, then that tells me a lot about what their problem is. If they tell me that, hey, I just trust my catcher and and I let him call the game and I just kind of go with him. And then if there's just something I absolutely don't want to throw, then I'll kind of shake him off. That tells me something about their preparation and about their their self confidence and whether they have a strategy or not. And then there's the guys that are like man, I absolutely want to call my own game, I understand. I studied the opponent, I'm glad I sat down and collaborated with the pitching coach in the catcher's, I've been studying these guys for the last two weeks, or three weeks or a month, I got the game plan set, the coaches and the data that the coaches have given them are given us about each player. And I'm pretty confident that means the catcher can work together and and we can execute, you know, a game plan that will give our team a chance to win that day. And so that's kind of the three types of guys I usually get is that one, the coach calls every pitch, which you know how I feel about that, that drives me crazy, right? And then then, kind of I just trust my cashier, which, you know, there's a lot of good catchers out there that are really high IQ guys that pay a lot of attention. But at the end of the day, if you want true conviction, and you want to have true confidence and what I call absolute certainty, then that pitcher is got to be in control of the decision making process. And and feel like that that is the absolute best pitch that could throw in that situation account. And so that's really the Genesis and kind of the the end of the story for us when we walk through the decision making process. And and then what is it based on, it's based on mastered pitches, it's based on what you know about that hitter. And then ultimately, what I call situational counter awareness. And to me, that's that that cue include of understanding what is the decision making process. And how I make that decision is ultimately what I found is been the key to confidence or guys that are really struggling. 

So when I have elite level Guys, guys, this kind of elite level stuff that throws mid 90s, and got two or three really good pitches, when I find out that they're struggling most of the time, it's somewhere in that that realm of they, they really don't really don't trust that they've done the preparation piece of making that decision. And I know this is a little bit deeper than what we normally dive into. But I'm telling you that that piece right here is the conversation we need to have once you've done all the work and you've become and I don't care whether you're a freshman in high school, or you know, it's your first year in the big leagues, that decision making process is got to be trained and developed, right? And then what then we can take all the data that's out there in the baseball world now and try to help these players understand, well, you know how that gives them a strategic advantage. But if we don't start shaping these young players to see the game that way, and we just spend 100% of our time focus on I got to throw harder, I got to do this, I got to hit the ball harder, I got to hit page bombs, I got to do all this stuff. If we can't get them to move through the steps of really, you know, my advanced skill set into strategy into game planning, and really the way they watch the game, then then that's usually the disconnect that you and I have seen here and for 15 years of consulting I've done that's the disconnect that I've seen that's really separated the really talented players versus the really good baseball players.

Geoff Rottmayer Speaking:
 
Right man, this is good stuff, you know, and, and a lot of the stuff that they're talking about can be flipped over to the hitting side, which is cool, because, you know, Darrell and I get to talk every single day about that hitter and pitcher matchup. You know, we do it all day long, and we just learn a lot from each other. So it's just a lot of fun. But But like, but like Darrell said, you know, the, the competitive advantage piece is what you know, which we talked about a couple episodes ago, which was all about the athleticism, exit velocity, the practice habits and routine, the attitude and the mechanics. And which took us to the unique hitting skilled, which would, you know, on the hitting side, the swing matching in the command hitting Yeah, the stick process. And this was what shows up on game day. This is the the you part, like Darrell mentioned, now, this is how we take what we know about ourselves and develop a strategy and a game plan against the the opponents. You know, and, and we talk a lot about making sure that we are working on in practice, what, what it what we're working on giving us a strategic advantage. If it's not, then we need to start questioning about what we're doing and why we're doing it. So that we have to ensure that we have the clarity and understanding about what we're doing and why we're doing what we're trying to accomplish. And whether it gives us that strategic advantage, because this is what's going to get us to mastery so that we can develop strategy. Yeah. But you know, but before we can have strategy, you have to you have to understand what we know about ourselves, you know, am I the guy that always takes that first pitch? Or am I the guy that takes aggressive hacks on that first pitch? You know, do I usually, am I a guy that takes off speed? Where I'm heading accounts? Or am I swinging strike? I mean, stuff like that? No, these are the things that good pitchers are looking at. And they're looking at stuff like that, to try to get an advantage over you. So what do I do when I'm ahead and account? What do when I'm behind an account? What cute tips and clues? Am I giving off? The What do you know about you? This is important. It What do you know about you? Just add, you know what we know about that? You know, what is like Darrell said, What is the team philosophy? Are they like a like, you know, Hard and Soft the way? You know, what do we know about that individual picture? And what tip cute include? Is he giving us? Does he commanded pitches? Is he competent in his secondary pitches? Does he have a strategy against us? You know, for now, now we take what we do, what we know about ourselves, what we know about the team, and then what we know about that individual yet you're too develop a game plan now Don't we have enough information to come up with a solid game plan. And you know what, now we can develop an approach for each count in situations, we can't just have a generic approach, we need to have an approach for him as an individual and what he does, because his fastball is not just the fastball, it's his fastball and his fastball different than the next guy. So with the understanding now we can have a real conversation about having an approach for each county needs situations. But again, we have to trust and we have to be confident in our skills in our preparation, which is why we talk about mastery before strategy. Yes, and so you know a lot of time you know when guy when guide was struggling you know, very rarely I mean, basically the older guys very rarely the competitive or a master the issue more yes more slower a strategy issue. And most guys, you know, when they struggle tend to go focus on the mechanics, yeah, would really, you know, like like their own kind of detrimental, you know, that of kind of having a conversation about you know, their preparation and and their decision making process. You know, what is the process for deciding what pit you can execute in that count and situations. And again, what is it based off of, like Darrell said earlier, this is based off of our master skilled and what we know about us, and what we know about the pitcher and what we know about the team philosophy, and you know, this is trained and this is developed the hopefully you can kind of start See, you know where we're talking about, you know what, when we train and when we practice, it has to give this, it has to give us a strategic advantage.

Darrell Coulter Speaking:

Yeah, in this case, Geoff don't have to be overwhelming. It just needs to be a part of the process it needs to be. And again, I think that's the questions we get from a lot of coaches, like, how do I integrate that into practice? And, and, and for us, here we use, we use it as a conversation starter. It's like really the the list that I give them as kind of the 15 cues and clues of how do we read the mind of a hitter. And again, it's not about understanding every little psychological effect of that pitcher or hitter, or vice versa. It's really about we're all nothing but patterns, habits and tendencies, man, that's what we do. Baseball players, that's who we are. The difference is, is the guys that take those patterns, habits and tendencies and are able to make competent adjustments with them, are able to go in and compete with them. And it's not a true definition of who they are. It's just the foundation of their skill set. And I think that that's where we get lost in translation, is that, okay? This kind of defines this guy's skill set. And then some players really buy into that they get stuck in that comparing commence mindset. And they never do move into that compete, contribute mindset. And so strategic advantage mindset says, Hey, man, I trust my skill set, I trust my advanced skills, I know that if this guy shows this pitch, or if this, if this guy's looking for this pitch, I can blow him away, or I can get weak contact with this pitch. Now it's a matter of Okay, going out and handling the pressure, and doing it in a real baseball game, and then doing it by situation and count. And I think once we break the game down into nothing but situation accounts, and what is the decision making process that I do pre pitch, whether you're hitting or pitching, then now it's really a focus on stand present, and really being observant about what you're seeing in real time. And I think that's the conversations that we need to start having with players. And we've been doing here, and we're starting to see that growth happened where these kids are practicing strategic advantage skills. And now we're seeing it on the weekends and go out there and come back and give us feedback on the following week, that they actually implemented a strategy they sat down and watch the team that they're going to play later. And and they seen some of the tendencies of the coaches, they seen the tendencies of the hitters and and really look for those cues and clues that can give us just a little bit of an advantage in that pre pitch decision making process. And I think that's the cool part about it. You know, we think these kids can't grasp that. And we're seeing it from high school freshmen to college players that we've dealt with this summer. And and we're seeing them make those strides in that strategic Vantage piece. And that's the cool part about this conversation, man.

Geoff Rottmayer Speaking:
 
It is and the conversation with the kid get a lot better, too, because it's not a Hey, man, how did your weekend go? You know, and that typical answer for the guys who haven't been through our process? They just kind of answered good, you know, in the kind of shrug and, and you and I are always asking, Well, what what does that mean? And it could be kind of a frustrating thing. But when you have a guy who had going through this strategic advantage mindset, now they're talking, you know, in depth about certain situations in the game, or certain to bat or pit or certain count. And now we can have a real conversation about about their game and what their decision making process was. Or the confident of judgment that they made. You know, so instead of you know, walking in, say, Hey, I went over seven with four strikeouts. No it you know, how did we How did we get those seven? How do we get to four strikeouts? What would the decision making process? Did you see the ball? Were you on time? Did you swing up the right pitches? Did you? Did you miss your pitch? And when guys start breaking it down like that, now we have a real conversation instead of getting pissed, you know? And you know, three weeks go by and I'm still pissed about the oldest over seven days.

Darrell Coulter Speaking:
  
Yeah. And I think that's how training should be once we have our unique skill set. And we got a pretty good idea of who we are right then. And we're in the middle of the season or we're getting ready to start to season, that ability to do those self scouting the self assessments, and come back and communicate that with coaches. There's going to be huge fan because I think there's a lot of great coaches out there. I think what we have is a breakdown in communication. And then when we struggle we got a tendency to go Back to our competitive advantage skill set can change something, when really what we need to change is the focus of what we're seeing, or what our expectation is our preparation for that specific pitcher, right. And I think once we are able to break that down by hitter and pitcher, and really individualize it, a bat to a bat, then I think the conversations that these kids give us, and the feedback that we get back from players is, is priceless, because now, it's not just random guessing of how we can help them make the adjustment and try to coach them up the best way, we're really getting real feedback that just came out of the game that is based on all of it, it's based on how they believe how they trust in themselves, and then ultimately what they do about that opponent, and then what was the outcome. But if you don't understand how we got the numbers, or how we produce the week contact, then it was just luck. But if I can consistently produce we contact or I can consistently produce swing and misses on purpose. Now we know that this pitcher has an idea. And he's executing pitches by velocity and movement to a specific location on purpose. And see as a scout and as a college coach, or somebody that's on the recruiting trail. That's what I would want to see. Right? Can he consistently execute on purpose in different situations and count more than just raw ability? And I think, honestly, Geoff, that's what we're seeing right before our eyes, man, and it's cool to kind of be at the forefront of having these conversations.

Geoff Rottmayer Speaking:
 
I agree. And, you know, as we wrap this up, you know, the thing I want to bring up is that the players are across all levels, all levels, young and old. Yeah, they look forward to the type of conversation, they look forward to the type of teaching that type of training. You know, I used to think that, you know, too deep for the younger guy, but but Darrell showed me that it's not. And they enjoy it, they enjoy it. And you know, what, do they grab that? In? in its entirety? No, but but the more we talk about it, the more they have the moments, so that other coaches, we need to get away from dumbing that down and trying to make things simple. Because man having the mindset and really understanding how to walk the game needs to be taught, especially to the guys who are legit the guys who are good that really want to play baseball at the next level, because like, like we say all the time. You know, the difference is when you start dating guys just as good, if not better than you. And the competitive advantage was level one that worked against guys that are not as good as you. Absolutely.

Darrell Coulter Speaking:
 
And so yeah, man. That's what's cool about what we're doing and getting it out to the listeners and different coaches and excited to get feedback and see how other coaches are implementing similar strategies.

Geoff Rottmayer Speaking:

Again, anyone who wants to learn more did feel free to call us or email us then you can find our information in the show notes. And the next episode, we're going to talk about level four game day execution though. Thank you for listening in and we'll catch you next time.

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