LaceUp Helps Hitters Train In a Variety of Ways

Image credit: Tim Hyers

Editor’s Note: LaceUp is a business partner of Baseball America.

When Rangers hitting coach Tim Hyers first saw a LaceUp in person, he realized he had found the solution to a problem he’d been looking to fix.

Hyers was looking for a weight that would allow hitters to change the weighting of their bat during soft toss or tee work. Ideally, it would be durable, easy to adjust, but most importantly it would be able to use it while taking actual swings.

With the LaceUp, Hyers could shelve some homemade devices that he’d messed with to try to give hitters a different feel with their game bats.

“You can put weights on different parts of the bat with live swings. Front toss, side toss and you can use the same bat in the game,” Hyers said. “I feel the biggest benefit is weight at the knob of the bat. That’s really beneficial for a hitter to feel something heavy on their hands and not cast the barrel. I have used a number of homemade devices that aren’t very sturdy. Wrap it around the knob. They don’t have to change bats.”

With the LaceUp, hitters can quickly move the weight from the knob to up above the hands at the top of the handle. It can also be attached further up to serve like a doughnut.

“It’s a solid device. It’s well made. It’s easy to put on and take off. You don’t have to take a long time to change it,” Hyers said. “Guys loosen up with it. It’s a doughnut too. You can use it for multiple purposes. It’s easy to carry it around. It’s a simple device that has many different advantages.”

But for Hyers, the most useful purpose of the LaceUp is to help hitters use the tool to change the center of balance of the bat and the weighting in drills.

“They get into habits with their regular bat. You put the LaceUp on, the body has to organize to be on time to contact. It’s challenging the body. Adding that degree of difficulty. It’s not so heavy that you can’t swing the bat, but it’s enough weight to challenge the hitter to get the bat to contact. The body has to reorganize but in a good way. You’re challenging the body to attract different muscles in swing. It adds a degree of difficulty. That’s what hitters like.”

“When you add the weight into your hands, you feel that connection to your core and the center of your body. Players feel what they need to feel at that time. The body has to feel strong and stay inside to feel that strength. Fix, six or seven swings with that heavy weight in their hands. That’s where they feel the strength,” Hyers said.

There are overload and underload bats that can serve some of those roles, but the LaceUp allows hitters to do those same drills with the same bat they will use in the game.

“They want to use what’s close to game action. They don’t have to swing a different bat,” Hyers said.

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