This apparently went up on Reddit about a week ago and now I can’t stop seeing it on Twitter. It’s absolutely mesmerizing every time it comes across my timeline. I have no idea how he hit these targets in order and didn’t even come close to going out of order. Just incredible bat control by Tokyo Yakult Swallows second baseman Tetsuto Yamada. My arms got fucking tired watching that many swings in just 100 seconds.
And while I love the Home Run Derby, the MLB all star week is lacking in competitions. This is something the NHL and NBA crush with their respective skills competitions that the MLB just doesn’t have outside of the HR Derby. I don’t know how to get pitchers or outfielders involved to show off their arm strength but there’s definitely something there for them as well. Plus the Derby has the added stigma of fucking up your swing for the second half of the season which makes some elite power hitters decline to participate every single season. This is just high level soft toss target practice and you’d be able to get non-power guys in the mix in front of the national spotlight. Like Ichiro, George Brett and Tony Gwynn would have dominated this contest, right? And now guys like Jose Altuve, Whit Merrifield, Scooter Gennett, Trea Turner, etc., etc., could have a place where they could display the other side of hitting.