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1 Version 2.0 Updated

2 Legal Stuff This document, and the words and pictures in it, are copyright Chris O Leary All rights reserved. This document may not be published, in whole or in part, to a web site, public or private, without the prior written permission of Chris O Leary. Chris O Leary is not affiliated or associated with Major League Baseball, this document is not endorsed by Major League Baseball, and all of the opinions expressed in this document are Chris O Leary s. If you happen to come across this flipbook on the Internet or via a friend and find it to be valuable, please understand that it isn t something that I just give away for free. Instead, I charge $6.95 for it. This flipbook is the product of years of work and thousands of dollars of investment on my part. On average, I have to go to 10 games to get one really valuable clip. You can purchase a legal, licensed copy of this flipbook at My family and I thank you. Chris O Leary January 2015

3 How to Use This Flipbook When I use this flipbook in front of an audience, you will notice that I am constantly rolling backwards and forwards through the slides, pointing out not just the positions and shapes but also the movements. If you want to get the maximum value out of this ebook, you should do the same; you should set this ebook up so that only one page occupies the screen and then page back and forth from page to page, watching the movements. To do this, download this PDF to your computer and open it using Adobe Reader or some other application that can display PDFs one page at a time. In Acrobat select View > Read Mode or View > Page Display > Single Page View. You can then use the right and left or up and down arrows on the keyboard to go through the frames of each clip and get a sense of how each movement looks and works.

4 This home run was from Albert Pujols at bat in the bottom of the 5th Inning on Thursday April 23, According to Gameday, the pitch was an 85 MPH fastball thrown down the middle. The previous two pitches were 79 MPH sliders away. The count was 2-0. The ball landed just to the left of the center field grassy area and 5 rows up into the bleachers.

5 Mini-Flipbook 30 Frames Per Second This mini-flipbook is based on a lower frame-rate clip, which makes it suitable for printing out and posting.

6 Stance In Frame 01, Albert Pujols is in a good, athletic position. His feet are spread wider than his shoulders and his knees are bent. His hands are up and back and in the neighborhood of his back shoulder. Rather than being fully extended or too bent, his front arm is bent roughly 135 degrees. I have marked the starting point of Albert Pujols front foot so that I can measure the length of his stride. I have also marked the starting point of his head and back hip so that I can track their movement. 01

7 02

8 03

9 Coiling While Striding In this and the next few frames, notice that, rather than immediately opening his hips, Albert Pujols instead Coils as he strides forward toward the pitcher. He does this in part by keeping his front foot closed and not letting it open too early on in his stride. 04

10 Toe-Down In Frame 05, Albert Pujols is preparing to land on his front foot. Notice that he leads with the toe of his front foot into Toe Touch. This is a key element of Albert Pujols Adjustability and, as I discuss in The Secrets of Albert Pujols Swing, something that he has stopped doing consistently of late. That, in my opinion, goes a long way toward explaining Albert Pujols fall-off over the past few years. 05

11 Loading Rather than taking his hands directly to the baseball, Albert Pujols has what many would label a hitch in his swing; in this and the next two frames, his hands go up slightly as he goes into Toe Touch. Rather than being a problem, this is a key component of Albert Pujols swing; it s how he Loads. 06

12 Toe Touch In Frame 07, Albert Pujols front toe has just made contact with the ground. Just as Ted Williams advised, Albert Pujols hips are leading his hands; while his hips are starting to open, his hands are not yet rotating. In fact, Albert Pujols hands are still going up, not down or forward. It isn t just Albert Pujols hands that rise up into Toe Touch. Rather than keeping his front elbow down as is widely advised, in this and the next two frames, Albert Pujols front elbow lifts up off of his chest and into the plane of his shoulders and into a position of Alignment. 07

13 Front Foot Down In Frame 08, Albert Pujols front foot is down, but not yet completely planted. However, it is down enough that we can measure Albert Pujols stride length, which I d put at roughly 6 inches. That is different than the no-stride that Albert Pujols was widely said to employ and that he often uses now that he is with the Angels. The advantage of this, Albert Pujols Classic Stride, and his gaining roughly 6 inches, is that it lets him carry some energy into foot plant, energy that he can use to help create power. 08

14 Heel Plant In Frame 09, Albert Pujols heel has fully planted, his weight is shifting into his front foot, and the knob of the bat has finally starting to come forward. His hips have opened 15 to 20 degrees at this moment. Rather than landing with his front foot completely closed and parallel to the front edge of the plate, Albert Pujols front foot landed roughly 45 degrees open, with his toe pointing at the first base bag. The head and hip markers show us that Albert Pujols stayed back; while his hips moved forward roughly 6 inches, his head only moved forward a few inches. 09

15 Elbow Slotted In Frame 10, Albert Pujols back elbow is slotted and in the neighborhood of his back hip. The knob has finally started to make a significant, rapid move forward and around to the ball. Rather than being barred out, his front elbow is still flexed, preserving his Adjustability. Finally, Albert Pujols hips are obviously opening up, with his belt buckle rotating to face the pitcher, not closed into contact as some teach. 10

16 Connection When I was working with Andres Torres and helping him change his swing and his approach, I often used this picture and ones like it as an example of Connection. Notice how, rather than throwing his hands at the ball and swinging with just his arms, Albert Pujols is swinging with his entire body. While the barrel has turned, you can tell from looking at the Hinge Angle that he is turning the barrel and powering his swing with his hips and not just his hands and arms. To assist with this process, Albert Pujols has braced his front knee, stopping the forward movement of his body. 11

17 Whip In Frame 12, the barrel is starting to Whip around Albert Pujols hands. His front knee is starting to extend and his front foot is rotating more open as his hips rotate. Frame 12 is also interesting because it dispels a number of myths First, rather than keeping the barrel above the ball and his hands, the barrel is clearly below the ball and Albert Pujols hands. Second, rather than Squishing the Bug, if you toggle between Frame 11 and Frame 12 you can see that Albert Pujols back foot is completely off the ground in Frame

18 Point Of Contact There are a number of things to pay attention to in this picture of Albert Pujols, which shows him slightly after the Point Of Contact. First, it took him 5 frames to get from Heel Plant, and the first forward movement of the knob, to the Point Of Contact. Second, he didn t throw his hands at the ball and hit it at full extension, making what is called the Power V. Instead, his back elbow is bent roughly 90 degrees, making what is called the Power L. His back foot is still completely un-weighted and his front knee is fully extended. Finally, rather than lunging forward, Albert Pujols stayed back; his head is above and just behind his back knee. 13

19 14

20 Extension Only now, several frames after the Point Of Contact, is Albert Pujols at full extension. That is because Extension is the effect of a good position at the Point Of Contact, not the cause of good contact. 15

21 16

22 17

23 18

24 19

25 Squishing the Bug In Frame 20, Albert Pujols is in a position that could be described as Squishing the Bug. However, this is well into his follow-through. Remember that, at the Point Of Contact, Albert Pujols back foot was up in the air. 20

26 Albert Pujols Loop and The Reverse C

27 The Loop in Pujols Swing Tony Gwynn believed that one of the worst things a hitter could do was to let the barrel fall below their hands and the ball, because that would create a loop in the swing and lengthen it. However, if you track the movement of the end of Albert Pujols bat as he swings, you will see that it clearly loops below the ball and his hands.

28 Albert Pujols Reverse C If you reverse the image of Albert Pujols barrel path on the preceding page, you will see that Albert Pujols barrel loops and traces out the Reverse C that Tony Gwynn believed was problematic.

29 Standard Flipbook 60 Frames Per Second This flipbook is based on a higher frame-rate clip, which makes it suitable for reviewing on a laptop or ipad.

30 Stance In Frame 01, Albert Pujols is in a good, athletic position. His feet are spread wider than his shoulders and his knees are bent. His hands are up and back and in the neighborhood of his back shoulder. Rather than being fully extended or too bent, his front arm is bent roughly 135 degrees. I have marked the starting point of Albert Pujols front foot so that I can measure the length of his stride. I have also marked the starting point of his head and back hip so that I can track their movement. 01

31 02

32 03

33 04

34 05

35 06

36 Coiling While Striding In this and the next few frames, notice that, rather than immediately opening his hips, Albert Pujols instead Coils as he strides forward toward the pitcher. He does this in part by keeping his front foot closed and not letting it open too early on in his stride. 07

37 08

38 Toe-Down In Frame 09, Albert Pujols is preparing to land on his front foot. Notice that he leads with the toe of his front foot into Toe Touch. This is a key element of Albert Pujols Adjustability and, as I discuss in The Secrets of Albert Pujols Swing, something that he has stopped doing consistently of late. That, in my opinion, goes a long way toward explaining Albert Pujols fall-off over the past few years. 09

39 10

40 Loading Rather than taking his hands directly to the baseball, Albert Pujols has what many would label a hitch in his swing; in this and the next two frames, his hands go up slightly as he goes into Toe Touch. Rather than being a problem, this is a key component of Albert Pujols swing; it s how he Loads. 11

41 12

42 Toe Touch In Frame 13, Albert Pujols front toe has just made contact with the ground. Just as Ted Williams advised, Albert Pujols hips are leading his hands; while his hips are starting to open, his hands are not yet rotating. In fact, Albert Pujols hands are still going up, not down or forward. It isn t just Albert Pujols hands that rise up into Toe Touch. Rather than keeping his front elbow down as is widely advised, in this and the next two frames, Albert Pujols front elbow lifts up off of his chest and into the plane of his shoulders and into a position of Alignment. 13

43 14

44 Front Foot Down In Frame 15, Albert Pujols front foot is down, but not yet completely planted. However, it is down enough that we can measure Albert Pujols stride length, which I d put at roughly 6 inches. That is different than the no-stride that Albert Pujols was widely said to employ and that he often uses now that he is with the Angels. The advantage of this, Albert Pujols Classic Stride, and his gaining roughly 6 inches, is that it lets him carry some energy into foot plant, energy that he can use to help create power. 15

45 16

46 Heel Plant In Frame 17, Albert Pujols heel has fully planted, his weight is shifting into his front foot, and the knob of the bat has finally starting to come forward. His hips have opened 15 to 20 degrees at this moment. Rather than landing with his front foot completely closed and parallel to the front edge of the plate, Albert Pujols front foot landed roughly 45 degrees open, with his toe pointing at the first base bag. The head and hip markers show us that Albert Pujols stayed back; while his hips moved forward roughly 6 inches, his head only moved forward a few inches. 17

47 18

48 Elbow Slotted In Frame 19, Albert Pujols back elbow is slotted and in the neighborhood of his back hip. The knob has finally started to make a significant, rapid move forward and around to the ball. Rather than being barred out, his front elbow is still flexed, preserving his Adjustability. Finally, Albert Pujols hips are obviously opening up, with his belt buckle rotating to face the pitcher, not closed into contact as some teach. 19

49 Compactness Frame 20 is a great example of the concept of Compactness, which is a key to Albert Pujols quickness to the ball. 20

50 Connection When I was working with Andres Torres and helping him change his swing and his approach, I often used this picture and ones like it as an example of Connection. Notice how, rather than throwing his hands at the ball and swinging with just his arms, Albert Pujols is swinging with his entire body. While the barrel has turned, you can tell from looking at the Hinge Angle that he is turning the barrel and powering his swing with his hips and not just his hands and arms. To assist with this process, Albert Pujols has braced his front knee, stopping the forward movement of his body. 21

51 22

52 Whip In Frame 23, the barrel is starting to Whip around Albert Pujols hands. His front knee is starting to extend and his front foot is rotating more open as his hips rotate. Frame 12 is also interesting because it dispels a number of myths First, rather than keeping the barrel above the ball and his hands, the barrel is clearly below the ball and Albert Pujols hands. Second, rather than Squishing the Bug, if you toggle between Frame 22 and Frame 23 you can see that Albert Pujols back foot is completely off the ground in Frame

53 Pre-Contact Rather than lunging forward, Albert Pujols stayed back; his head is above and just behind his back knee. NOTE: The apparent bending forward of a bat is just an optical illusion and a product of the sensor on the camera. But it can give you a sense of how fast the barrel is moving; the camera shutter can t keep up with it. 24

54 Post-Contact There are a number of things to pay attention to in this picture of Albert Pujols, which shows him slightly after the Point Of Contact. First, it took him 5 frames to get from Heel Plant, and the first forward movement of the knob, to the Point Of Contact. Second, he didn t throw his hands at the ball and hit it at full extension, making what is called the Power V. Instead, his back elbow is bent roughly 90 degrees, making what is called the Power L. Finally, his back foot is still completely un-weighted and his front knee is fully extended. 25

55 26

56 27

57 28

58 Extension Only now, several frames after the Point Of Contact, is Albert Pujols at full Extension. That is because Extension is the effect of a good position at the Point Of Contact, not the cause of good contact. 29

59 30

60 31

61 32

62 33

63 34

64 35

65 36

66 37

67 38

68 Squishing the Bug In Frame 39, Albert Pujols is in a position that could be described as Squishing the Bug. However, this is well into his follow-through. Remember that, at the Point Of Contact, Albert Pujols back foot was up in the air. 39

69 Where to go From Here This is just one of my flipbooks and it contains excerpts from a few of the many flipbooks and clips that I have in my library. Some of those flipbooks are available for sale individually and all of them are available to those who purchase one or more of my hitting bundles. To see what hitting and other products are available, including drills that will help you develop the movements that you see in this flipbook, go to For more information about the concepts and ideas discussed in this ebook, you can contact me via Phone: More of my writings can be found on my free, public web site

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