Written by Crash A Beginner's Guide to the Contact Hitter Hello, and welcome to my strategy guide. For this build, we will focus solely on the offensive half of making a contact hitter. As of yet, defense is not tough to train, and you don't need to be a super star playmaker in the field when you first start out.

Keep in mind that this is a guide, not an instruction manual. As such, there will NOT be any exact numbers for Attributes and Skills. This is here to start you off in the right direction, but finding the best balance and having fun with it is left up to you.

Terms to be Defined

Contact Hitter - A batter who's objective is to put the ball in play, and produce a high On Base Percentage and very respectable average. Not the fastest or strongest, but reliable for a single or a walk when the team is in need.

Power Hitter - The muscle of any lineup, this batter can drive the ball deep and put it into the seats. This is the type of batter who will deliver a lot of home runs and RBIs

Speed Hitter - Typically the fastest players on the field, these batters can beat out an infield single and bunt for a hit. Once they get on, they can be counted on to steal a base or two and put themselves into scoring position.

Major Attribute - The most important attributes for this build. These are going to directly effect if you succeed or fail with this build, and they should be higher than any other attributes.

Minor Attribute - Not as important to your build as a major attribute, but they are still keys to success. Ignoring these attributes will only harm your player.

Very Minor Attribute - Completely unrelated to this build. Training it may help you defensively or allow you to put a spin on this build, but neglecting it a bit will not kill you. Keep in mind though that if you ignore any attribute for too long, your player WILL suffer.

Initial Creation The ideal positions for a contact hitter are anywhere in the outfield, second base, and short stop. These positions are shared with speed hitters, while the rest of the field is generally power hitters. Catchers will need a lot of defense and reflexes, which will take away from your contact hitting.

You do not want to make a big player, as the larger players hit for power. Smaller players are the speed hitters, so we need to find a nice area in between. It is recommended that you make your player between 5 feet 11 inches (1.8 meters) and 6 feet 3 inches (1.9 meters). For your weight, try to stay between 170 and 200 pounds (77 and 91 kilograms).

Throwing and batting hand are completely up to you, but I have found that switch hitters in the sim generally do not lose anything on one side of the plate compared to the other. The following is an answer from Guardian that may help you decide which to choose as a batter.

Quote:{| border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="100%" | class="alt2" style="border-bottom: 1px inset; border-left: 1px inset; border-top: 1px inset; border-right: 1px inset"|Originally Posted by GuardianIf you think of a switch hitter as the base line, a LH hitter gets a bonus against RHP and a penalty against LHP. Vice versa for a RH hitter.

Of course switch hitters aren't equal from both sides of the plate either. One side is a slight power boost while the other side is a contact boost, and it determines which side by using your throwing handedness. A LH switch hitter gets power from the right side and contact from the left side, and vice versa. |} Attributes

General Skills

Athleticism - This effects how you adapt to playing out of position and how you recover from injuries. A good part of being a contact hitter is being able to shift around the Outfield as needed. Your team may have a great Centerfielder, and if your player signs on as a backup, he needs to be able to move around. If he plays Left and Right poorly, he's not going to get put in the lineup much and his At Bats will drop. This is one of your minor attributes, as training it will help keep you on the field and get you at bats to produce as a contact hitter.

Speed - Simple - how fast you move around the field and bases. If you are fast, you can stretch your hits into doubles instead of singles. While it is not your main focus as a contact hitter to be fast, you may want to invest some points here so that you are not doubled off on a Sacrifice bunt/fly or thrown out going from First to Third/Home. A very minor attribute.

Strength - How hard you throw the ball and hit the ball. A very minor attribute from the offensive perspective as it is not your job to hit the ball hard. You may see this as an important attribute as an outfielder though.

Knowledge - This determines how intelligent you are during the game - knowing where to throw the ball from the Outfield and when to take an extra base. A minor attribute for the contact hitter.

Reflexes - Determines how quickly you react to an event, be it a past ball, a hit towards your player, or an overthrow. I view this as a very minor attribute from the offensive side, but it can be very important to defense.

Stamina - How much energy you use during the game in combination with your Level of Play tactic. The way the sim currently works, this is a very minor attribute, as you can sit for a game to recover some or skip a night of training to recover 5 energy if absolutely necessary. As a fielder and contact hitter, you don't need high stamina, but keep an eye on how low it gets while you are using trainers that have a negative effect on stamina.

Consistency - Helps keep your player in line with his tactics and improves production. Whether this is a minor or major attribute is debatable, but I consider it to be somewhere in between. It doesn't need to be focused on as much as the three major attributes, but it should see added attention compared to most minor attributes. Keeping it somewhere in between is recommended.

Hitting Skills

Batting Speed - How fast you get the bat to the ball. A major attribute for all hitters. If you can't keep up with the ball, you're going to stike out. This needs to be one of your main focuses.

Hit Power - This determines how you transfer your strength into power hits. A very minor attribute for a contact hitter, but you'll want to keep it at a decent level so that you are not popping out to the infielders.

Eye Coordination - How you see the ball. A major attribute for all hitters. If you can't tell where the pitch will be, you can't hit it - plain and simple. Another one of your main focuses.

Hit Control - Perhaps the most important attribute for all contact hitters, this determines your ability to control where the ball goes when you hit it. You MUST be able to control your hits if you are going to get on base.

Base Running - This helps with steals, avoiding pick offs, and taking extra bases. A very minor attribute for the contact hitter, as you will not be focusing on steals with this build, and if you follow the advice in the tactics section, it will be extremely rare for you to be picked off. I view Knowledge as a more important attribute when taking extra bases, but this is something that you don't want to constantly drop.

Defensive Skills

Defensive Aptitude - How well you play defense. This is a main attribute for all field players, as you need to be sure you are not making errors and you are in fact making putouts. It is more important if you choose a second baseman or shortstop, but you can slack here a little bit if you are an outfielder.

Specific Skills Clutch Hitting will aid you in coming up with a hit when your team needs one. While it is not the job of a contact hitter to provide a big hit when the team is in need of one, everybody needs to be able to get on base when a team is down. That being noted, you will want to put some points here, but only after your other two offensive skills have some points in them.

Working the Count is a very important skill for a contact hitter. You will lay off bad pitches and have longer at bats. Instead of swinging at the first pitch, your hitter will force the pitcher to work and make mistakes. A batter that works the count well will produce pitches that are more hitter friendly, and allow you to produce more hits and walks.

Defensive hitting is also a good skill for a contact hitter, as it improves your two strike swing. Any time you are down to your last strike, you are going to need all the help you can get.

Working the Count and Defensive Hitting go hand in hand for the contact hitter, and will greatly improve your hitting.

Equipment and Boosting You are able to purchase 3 pieces of equipment through cash; hats, gloves, and shoes. If you opt to spend credits, you are able to purchase a bat. You can add a maximum of 2.00 points to each piece of equipment, which will cost you $10,000. Don't worry if you can't afford it right away, just save up what you can. Note that buying equipment that has less of a plus will help you starting off, but it will prolong your attempt at a +2 piece. However, this allowance of 5 total points works perfectly, as you can add two points to each of your main attributes without having to spend credits. While you can split these six points into any combination, it is always best to raise your most important attributes. If you opt to purchase a bat, you should use it on your minor offensive attributes.

Boosting will require you to earn credits (assuming you used your initial 200 for a second player) through purchasing them, referrals, or promotional contests/giveaways on the forums. Boosting is a way to quickly increase your attributes instead of slowly training them during the season. If you are boosting a new player, you should not yet have any attributes over 50, so one increment will result in a 1.00 point increase for any attribute. If you opt to boost your player, keep in mind that you can only spend 50 points per season doing so. It is recommended that 60% of your boost goes to your 3 main attributes, 20% goes into your minor attributes, and the remaining 20% goes into your defense. This will allow you to increase your hitting largely, while not letting your defense and general ability fall behind.

Tactics Tactics are how you really set yourself apart as a force in the game. Finding the right balance for your player is the most important part of the game.

Level of Play: This will vary based on your stamina, but you should never drop below Average. I recommend setting this to Extreme. While it will decrease your energy the quickest of any setting, it will also immediately impact your player and make your presence known. Hard will see a slight drop off, but if you feel more comfortable here than Extreme, do it. Remember that you can always take a night off from training to recover energy when necessary, and if you really need to recover fully, your manager can bench you for a game and allow you to start fresh at 100.

Hitting Style: Line Drive is the way to go. Speed hitters keep the ball on the ground and power hitters attempt to elevate it. Putting a laser hit out there makes it harder for the defense to react to and more likely for you to get a hit.

Hitting Aim: This is purely preference, but I have found that the gaps work best (especially for a switch hitter.) You want to be able to put the ball anywhere on the field, and hitting it to one side well will not do as much for you as being able to split the defense. You will also find that if you control the ball well, you can put it where the fielders cannot make a play on it and produce more hits.

Hitting Patience: Aggressive is the one setting you do not want to play with here. It goes directly against your skills, and forces you to jump on the first pitch and go after the ball. You want to sit back and wait for it, so Balanced or Reserved are the way to go. I have found that Reserved will force you to wait a little too long and let some pitches go by, while Balanced in combination with your skills will allow you to work the count well and hit what's there.

Bunt Frequency: Simply put - Never. You are a batter that puts the ball in play and gets on base. You do not sacrifice your at bat to move the runner over when you can get on base without producing an out. Some people may disagree, but if the rest of the lineup does it's job, you won't need to sacrifice your at bat.

Defensive Aggressiveness: This is left up to your discretion, but it is recommended that you start out with Reserved. Until you have mastered your hitting, you cannot pump up your defense too much, so you don't want to be Aggressive and make errors, but Balanced may harm you as well.

Leadoff Distance: You are not building an overly fast player, so you do not want to get picked off. 5-7 is a good distance and will allow you to get a decent lead without risking being picked off.

Stealing: Reserved is the setting for you. A contact hitter's job is to get on base and let the power guys bring him in. If you are getting caught stealing, you are not doing your job.

Base Running: This is up to you. I use Balanced, which is probably the best setting for anybody who does not invest in speed. You're not the slowest, so you won't risk getting thrown out going from first to third, but if you were to choose aggressive, you would likely not have enough speed to make it without getting thrown out.

Training Obviously you want to focus on your main attributes, but not so much that you harm other facets of the game. Things to focus on are: The Swing Doctor, The Bambino, The Monk, and The Specialist.

These focus on your main attributes, and a bit of your minor attributes. Keep an eye on the things you are taking away from though, as you do not want to harm them too much. Always remember that this sim forces you to have a well rounded player. Ignoring any attribute for too long will do harm to your player. It's not something you have to worry about at initial creation, but as you level up, keep an eye on things.

Closing Keep in mind that with this build, you will not aim to immediately produce many home runs or extra base hits, but you will have your fair share of them, and if your line up does their job, the RBIs will be there for you. Your slugging percentage may not be high, but your average will be very good and your on base percentage will be spectacular. Through his first 27 games, my Left Fielder hit .321 with .429 on base using this build. As you continue with this build, your goal will be to see your walks and hits sky rocket as your strikeouts fade away. Thank you for taking the time to read this guide.