Get in Game Shape

Monday, July 27, 2009

Small Ball

Hello Hitters,

This is the time of season where wining ball clubs will concentrate more on Small Ball. Division races are getting tight and the emphasis is on winning baseball games.

What is Small Ball?

i consisder Small Ball as doing the little things on the field to win close ballgames. Bunting, Hit and Run, hitting the ball to the right side of the field to move a runner over and running aggressively from first to third are all elements of Small Ball. Getting the runner in from 3rd base with no outs or 1 out is always a must, but during last half of the season it becomes a necessity! The squeeze bunt will be used more frequently as well, as winning ball clubs try to score runs anyway they can. Yes this is Small Ball time. As you watch Major League games, look for the announcers to comment on the clubs who do the little things to win ball games.

I will start breaking down the game in the coming weeks as it should be played describing the importance of playing small ball. In my 39 plus years in the game I have learned that the teams that execute the best, are the teams that's always seem to make it to Post Season play or finish towards the top of the division year after year.

Tony Larussa of the St. Louis Cardinals is one of the best Managers in the game today who stresses basic fundamental Small Ball, day in and day out. And people wonder why year after year his teams are always in the playoffs or going to the World Series.

Big ball is fun, but great hitters excel when the situation calls for some small ball.

Stay Focused
Mike "The HitMan" Easler

Monday, July 20, 2009

Old Timers Day

Hey hitters,

It's Brandon here. Just wanted to post some pictures and give you all a re-cap about the HitMan at his first New York Yankees Old Timers Day game.

Mike was batting clean up for the "Clippers" squad and playing first base. In his first at bat Mike faced Mike Mussina! Mussina came out throwing hard, but the Hitman looked ready! He fouled off some tough fastballs. Mussina knew he couldn't beat the Hitman with the gas, so he went to an off-speed pitch. The Hitman, being a professional hitter, waited on Mussina's junk and dropped an RBI single into left field!

Mike also showed off some great defensive skills at first base! He robbed Micky Rivers of a hit by going two steps to his right and getting a force out a t second. The play should have made SportsCenters top plays!

Mike's second at bat came against Mel Stottlemyre. Mike hit a hard ground ball to second base, resulting in a DP, but he made solid contact and put the ball in play. Even though he didn't get a hit, Mike ran the ball out all the way through first base....something everyone should do!

Mike, once again showed what a professional ball player should do, and hustled to first base!
Overall, the Hitman had a good day. One- for- two with an RBI and great defensensive play!

I was fortunate enough to be in the crowd with my father (a long time Yankee fan), Mike's beautiful daughter, Misty and two friends. After the the game, all the Yankee Old Timers came up to the luxury suites where we were sitting (boy the Yankees do everything with class) and hung around with family and friends.

It was a great day all around, As the Yankees swept the Tigers and the Old Timers got to play again.
The Hitman is traveling home today, but told me that once he lands and takes a nap, he will begin training for next years Old Timers Day game!
Well, Mike and I are excited to continue bringing you hitting and conditioning tips and thoughts, so check in often as the best info is yet to come!
Leave a comment and forward to all your baseball buddies!
Stay focused
Brandon Smith

Friday, July 17, 2009

Coming Soon!

Coming Soon!

I'm Feeling Good!

Hello Hitters,

Just wanted to check in and tell ya that I'm in New York and I feel great. I'm ready for this Sunday's "Old Timers Day Game" at New Yankee Stadium.

The Game is Sunday, July 19th, so watch me if you can. If you can't, don't worry, I'll make the SportsCenter highlights when I go DEEP!

Stay Focused

Mike "The HitMan" Easler

Watch for my big website launching soon

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Back in the Bigs!

Hey hitters,

I'm back in the big leagues!! O.K. it's only for one day, but I'm back!

I'll be playing in the New York Yankees Old Timers Day Game on July 19th, but I ain't no old timer yet!

I've been working out and taking some cuts, because I plan on hooking one down the right field line for a big time jack! That's why I'm the hitman!

If you have the MLB package, tune in on July 19th and see me back on the diamond.

I'll let you know how I do after the game.

If you go to the game, yell my name and tell me you're a "HitMan" and I'll try my best to come over and chat for a minute.

Stay focused
Mike "The HitMan" Easler

P.S. We are almost done with the new website, conditioned to hit, so be on the look out!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Be a team player

In my first full year in the Major Leagues with the Pittsburg Pirates I didn't play very much. I was the designated left handed pinch hitter. 162 games and I only started 3 games the whole year. 2 games in May, and 1 game in Sept. But I was called upon in very tough and clutch situations to come through off the bench and get a big hit or keep a rally going. I learned very early in the season that I had to become a good teammate and keep myself mentally and physically ready each and everyday. I became what you would call a cheerleader for the everyday players. By becoming a team player and a good teammate I ended up playing the full year in the Major Leagues with the World Champion Pittsburgh Pirates and established myself as one of the best pinchitters in the game. Oh, by the way I earned the name that year that people recognize me today as the "HitMan", by being patient and being a good team player, and a good teammate. If you are not a starter on your team be patient and wait for your opportunity, you never know you might become the next "HitMan".

Stay Focused
Mike "The HitMan" Easler