Josh Donaldson Swing | Before and After
Josh Donaldson's swing change allowed him to become one of the best hitters in baseball.
The mechanics that he implemented are not new. The great hitters over the last 100 years have all used these movements.
They are able to create early bat speed, get on plane and consistently square the baseball.
Early bat speed means that the initial movement of the barrel is towards the dugout behind him. If you watch closely, all of the great hitters have some kind of tipping action. This tip of the barrel is a loading action for the hands and arms to send the barrel back towards the dugout behind them. The barrel continues around the back forearm and is then directed towards the baseball.
This swing path allows a smooth and efficient use of momentum.
The Barrel Turn
This is one of the furthest balls ever hit. Notice the tipping action of the barrel.
Here is Dick Allen. I slowed this clip down so you can see the blur of the bat and where that blur is happening.
The barrel is twisted into the baseball.
This tipping action is a load of the hands to twist the barrel.
Donaldson makes a strong triangle shape with his arms. He swings that triangle shape to swing the bat. The elbows and bat move together.
David Wright uses the same triangle shape when he swings.
And so does Ortiz.
This one concept can change the trajectory of a hitters career. Players might use a leg lift and think they hit like Donaldson, they don't.
The triangle turn is what made the difference in his swing.