Yearly Archives: 2013

#3 of The Top 10 Baseball Exercises MLB Players Actually Do

#3 of The Top 10 Baseball Exercises MLB Players Actually Do

Since Major League Baseball has set into the winter months and athletes everywhere are now training this offseason, TravelballSelect.com has picked out the top 10 exercises MLB standouts actually perform that are geared towards 13U and above players.  So why you're sitting around waiting for the season to start, or indulging in holiday food, get up off the couch and try these exercises to enhance your game.  Think of it as an All-Star lineup of exercises that'll help you reach your true potential.

#3 Performed by: Dustin Pedroia

Why he does it: Former AL MVP Pedroia is consistently among the league leaders in on-base percentage and pitches per plate appearance. His ability to extend at-bats is made possible by exercises that develop his upper-body strength and rotational movement.

How to do it:

  • With cable machine to right, assume athletic stance with feet slightly wider than shoulder-width
  • Reach across body with left hand, turning hips and shoulders to cable machine, to hold handle set at low position
  • Explosively rotate hips left and bring handle across body until it’s above and outside left shoulder
  • Return to start position and repeat for specified reps
  • Perform set on opposite side


Sets/Reps: 2×10 each side

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lamorinda

lamorinda
 

The ultra-talented Lamorinda Spartans 13U baseball team completed another successful season this fall. The California-based squad won titles at the only tournaments they entered; the Perfect Game NorCal Qualifier and the Polar Bear Classic 14U, going a combined 8-1. Lamorinda 13U Dark

In the November Perfect Game Qualifier, Lamorinda went 4-0 and coasted through the field. Its closest game came against Bulldog Baseball which was a 4-0 shutout. In this month’s Polar Bear Classic 14U field, the Spartans suffered its first loss. They fell to Bret’s Muckdogs 9-5 in the opening game before knocking off four straight opponents, including the Muckdogs 16-3 in the finals.

The team is comprised of 7th and 8th graders and is part of a highly-successful baseball club that features teams from the 10U through the 18U levels. The main focus for the coaching staff this year will be to prepare the players for high school competition.

As previously mentioned, the squad is full of talent. Three TbS All Americans return to the team this year, Javier Lopez, Adrian Flores and Xavier Carter. In addition, Got ‘Em Baseball’s top-ranked player from Northern California, Israel Quintana, will be wearing a Spartans uniform.

Like any top team, the Spartans travel and game schedule will be quite rigorous. Starting in February, the team will compete in one to two tournaments per month through August. They will mostly play up an age group on the bigger, major-league sized fields, but some exceptions will be made during large regional tournaments or Super NIT’s

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#4 of The Top 10 Baseball Exercises MLB Players Actually Do

#4 of The Top 10 Baseball Exercises MLB Players Actually Do

Since Major League Baseball has set into the winter months and athletes everywhere are now training this offseason, TravelballSelect.com has picked out the top 10 exercises MLB standouts actually perform that are geared towards 13U and above players.  So why you're sitting around waiting for the season to start, or indulging in holiday food, get up off the couch and try these exercises to enhance your game.  Think of it as an All-Star lineup of exercises that'll help you reach your true potential.

 

 

#4 Performed by: Justin Upton

Why he does it: Upton has one of the best arms in baseball, because he performs exercises that strengthen his shoulders and the stabilizing muscles around the shoulder joint. He uses a full range of motion and controlled movement to increase flexibility and prevent injury.

How to do it:

  • Place right hand and right knee on bench and left leg on floor to side

  • Hold dumbbell in left hand with palm facing in

  • Bring dumbbell to chest while keeping elbow tight to body; hold for one count

  • Lower dumbbell to start position; repeat

  • Perform on opposite side

    Sets/Reps: 2×10 each arm

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#1 of 10 Baseball Apps That Are a Must Get

#1 of 10 Baseball Apps That Are a Must Get

Every week TravelballSelect will show top apps that are a must get for baseball fans.

 


Number 1:

 

 

ESPN Fantasy Baseball - Allows you to manage your teams throughout the season, follow matchups in real time, add/drop/trade players, and make lineup changes from wherever.  This app lets you follow along with every game, news story and update of the season, and it a must have for every baseball fanatic.

 

 

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#1 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

#1 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

With Christmas around the corner, many gifts will include video games and systems.  This makes me think...  What are the best baseball video games of all time?  Well, TravelballSelect has them, and we'll count you down each week until Christmas Day!


 

1. 'MLB THE SHOW' series (2006)


 

MLB: The Show has become so life-like, you might forget you’ve actually got a controller in your hand. The incredible detail, from pitching motions to spot-on recreation of each ballpark, and deep franchise mode make The Show the crown jewel of baseball video games.




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#2 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

#2 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

With Christmas around the corner, many gifts will include video games and systems.  This makes me think...  What are the best baseball video games of all time?  Well, TravelballSelect has them, and we'll count you down each week until Christmas Day!

 

2. MLB 2K Series (All Years)

 

The series of MLB 2K video games was developed by Visual Concepts and Kush Games, and published by 2K Games. There have been ten games in the series: 2K4, 2K5, 2K6, 2K7, 2K8, 2K9, 2K10, 2K11, 2K12, and 2K13. All games were created for each MLB season. The series was created in 2004 after Visual Concepts teamed up with ESPN. Visual Concepts called the series World Series Baseball in years prior to 2004 for the Dreamcast, with Pedro Martinez as the cover athlete. On January 9, 2013 MLB 2K posted a picture on their Facebook page with David Price as an apparent cover athlete with a MLB 2K13 logo and a release date of March 5. They even have the $1 Million Dollar Challenge, which ups the ante!

 


 

 

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#3 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

#3 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

With Christmas around the corner, many gifts will include video games and systems.  This makes me think...  What are the best baseball video games of all time?  Well, TravelballSelect has them, and we'll count you down each week until Christmas Day!


3. MVP Baseball (2005)


Widely considered one of the best baseball video games of all time, the 2005 installment of MVP Baseball had it all: phenomenal graphics, franchise mode, dynasty mode and a new feature called ”Batter’s Eye,” which allowed the user to read a pitch as soon as it left the pitcher’s hand. No more fooling us with spitballs, virtual pitchers!



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Three Yoga Poses Every Pitcher Should Try

Three Yoga Poses Every Pitcher Should Try
Some might not think of this, but for growing teenagers in 13U and above ball, your body starts to grow fast.  Staying loose and treating your muscles early on is something that is overlooked by many.  This off-season TravelballSelect has found that Yoga...  Yes, I said that, 'Yoga,' has been incorporated into many off-season regimes.


Stretching and staying loose are important for all baseball players, but especially for pitchers. Tight shoulders, biceps, hips and glutes will limit a pitcher's ability to execute the windup and the pitch—and leave him susceptible to a number of muscle-related injuries.


To stay loose and effective throughout the long baseball season, players should practice yoga, which is increasingly popular among athletes.  Here are three yoga positions that are particularly beneficial for pitchers.


1. Cow Face Pose [Shoulders]

This pose stretches the shoulders. Yoga for Sports expert Gwen Lawrence calls it an obvious choice for pitchers, because "it opens and clears the rotator cuff while strengthening the supporting back muscles to add power." It will help you fire fastball after fastball without increasing your risk of injury.


Sit with your bent right knee on top of your bent left knee. Flatten your butt to the floor and align your hips with your straight spine. Raise your right arm, bend the elbow and place your right palm on your back. Lift your left arm to the side, palm facing back and thumb pointing down; bend your left elbow and move your left hand behind your back, palm facing out. Try to hook your fingers together behind your back while energetically lifting your right elbow toward the ceiling.

If you cannot hook your fingers together, hold a towel in your right hand and grab it with your left.

“This pose may be frustrating in the beginning,” says Lawrence;  “however, the shoulders have a tendency to open quickly, so stay focused and determined and results will come quickly.”


Hold the pose between one and five minutes; switch sides.


2. Table Pose [Biceps]


Stretching  the biceps is critical for pitchers. The bicep on your throwing arm must comfortably lengthen with each pitch. Use Table Pose to stretch your biceps while strengthening your back.



Start by lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart. Place your palms on the floor behind your hips and under your shoulders. Press both your palms and feet into the ground while lifting your hips until your thighs and torso form a straight line. Hold for two or three deep breaths, then lower back down softly. Repeat.


3. Pigeon Pose [Glutes, Hip Flexors]

For ace pitchers, the arm isn’t everything. Flexible hips and legs are also essential. The Pigeon Pose will take care of those tight glutes and hips, so you can powerfully push off your legs and follow through without pulling a muscle.



Start on all fours with your hands under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Slide your right knee forward between your hands while sliding your left leg straight back, until your left hip and right heel are in line. Press down with your hands and lift your chest. Look up, roll your shoulders down and arch your back. Keep stretching the left leg back. Hold for two or three deep breaths, then release. Repeat on opposite side.


For an additional challenge to your hip flexor, bend your left knee and raise your left leg off the ground. Raise your left arm, reach back and grab your left foot with your left hand. Gently pull to deepen the stretch in your hip flexor.


These three poses can be performed within 10 to 15 minutes, easily fitting into your busy schedule. Include them into your post-workout and/or post-game cool down.

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#4 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

#4 Of The Top 10 Baseball Video Games of All Time

With Christmas around the corner, many gifts will include video games and systems.  This makes me think...  What are the best baseball video games of all time?  Well, TravelballSelect has them, and we'll count you down each week until Christmas Day!


4. Ken Griffey's Slugfest (1999)


A step up from Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball, ”Slugfest” allowed for multiplayer gameplay, home run derby mode and full 3D action. To this day, the game remains a blast to fire up on the old N64, simply to relive the glory days of Ken Griffey Jr.

 


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Bouncing Back From Injuries – Pt. 1

Bouncing Back From Injuries – Pt. 1

It's easy for young athletes to get discouraged when they're forced to sit and watch from the bench after an injury. The risks of coming back too soon are well known. But taking too much time off can also be dangerous, since excessive inactivity increases the risk of re-injury once you are cleared to play.  TravelballSelect has these suggestions in a two-part series, if an injury occurs during the off-season or season.




Don't Rush and Be a Hero
It's bad enough to be injured, but getting re-injured is worse. So, don't rush the process and try to be a hero. Remember, bones take six to eight weeks to heal, and after suffering a series injury, such as an ACL or MCL tear, it'll be at least a full six months before the attachments are at full strength.


It takes even longer for proprioception to return. Proprioception is the body's awareness of a joint's position in space. You could close your eyes and still be able to 'feel' where your arms are in relation to your body. Total recovery is needed, including the return of proprioception, can take even longer than what the team doctor recommends.


Rest is as Important as Rehab
Every athlete has learned to focus on actions, so sometimes the hardest part of injury recovery is taking time off from working out. The stimulus for recovery comes from what is done in the training room, but the repair comes when the body has a chance to relax. Rehab will strengthen the area around the injured body part, but it won't fix the injury. That only comes from rest.


Check back with TravelballSelect.com later this week for Part II of this piece.

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