Josh Norris recently spoke to former Yankees hitting coach Rick Down, who now serves as the club’s minor league hitting coordinator. In part one of their chat, Downs talks more about his role within the organization — coaching the hitting coaches, not necessarily the players — and hitting philosophy in general. “Most often when you talk to people who don’t know much about hitting, the first place they want to go is to the swing, but that’s the last thing that happens,” said Down. “The barrel’s the last thing to the ball in this whole hitting process.”
Part two of their talk is focused more on individual players, specifically Double-A guys Cody Johnson, Melky Mesa, and Ronnie Mustelier. Both parts are fascinating and well worth your time. Hitting seems like such a harder thing to perfect than pitching, which I think is why so many of best hitters in baseball today are guys who exceeded expectations.