Originally Posted by TSJ55
I don't understand this. Power guys are trying to hit home runs. Line drive guys are trying to hit line drives and slap hitting guys are just punching the ball wherever they can. I don't know of any hitter who's aim is to loft a ball into the outfield where somebody can run under it.
I think either I explained it poorly or you're over complicating it. It's not like power guys simply choose to hit home runs. The home run is a result of getting a pitch in your zone and squaring the barrel on ball. Same with any hard hit ball, it's just a matter of trajectory.
Going to the plate looking specifically to "hit a sac fly" would be shooting yourself in the foot like we've already discussed. You may miss a pitch that you can actually hit more sharply with that approach. But, recognizing a pitch that will allow to you to get the runner in via sac fly and taking advantage of that is different.
You don't always get a pitch to drive in high level baseball. Especially in scoring situations. Not having to completely square it up and still get the run in is what I'm preaching.
It's my impression that the majority of the time where a batter doesn't square a ball up, he either hits a pop fly or a dribbler. Hitting the ball 250-300 feet in the air is no easy task.
If a hitter was acute enough to a)recognize a pitch that he might not be "good enough to drive" but was good enough to hit a lazy fly ball, deep enough to score a runner and b)skilled enough to do it consistently. He'd again be the greatest hitter in history.
What you're missing here is that sacrifice fly is a byproduct of a good hitter finding pitches they can drive and swinging well enough to at least hit the ball into the outfield. Of course sometimes hitters get fooled on what they think is a good enough pitch to drive, and they end up hitting a lazy fly ball. If a runner is on third base, mission accomplished. Sometimes a hitter picks the correct pitch, but just gets under it a little bit. Again, mission accomplished.
But if he swings at a pitch that he thinks he can lift to the outfield if he executes it exactly right, he'll usually end up popping out or grounding out.