Baseball at 400mm

I shoot baseball in a bit of a strange way. Most guys shoot baseball, or dream of shooting baseball, with a

400mm f/2.8L
DSLR with 6.5fps or better

Canon 2x ExtenderI don't have either one of those, which is fine. Why I think I'm weird is because I don't really desire to shoot with those. I have a

70-200mm f/2.8L + 2x Extender
DSLR with 3fps (Canon XTi)

I learned to shoot baseball with this setup. Without that 6.5fps motor drive, I have to time my shots, which can be a pain. With a motor drive, you are able to fire off 5 photos at ABOUT the right time, and one of them will by your photo.

I like my batting photos to be kind of like this:

HSU BaseballI want the ball frozen about 2ft from the bat. To get this photo, I've got to hit the button way earlier than my mind wants to, and hopefully I'll get lucky.

I shoot with that 70-200mm because I like the zoom. The 400mm is LEGIT, don't get me wrong, but I hate the idea of having a prime lens THAT SIZE. So, to get to 400mm, I add a 2x Extender, and transform my same lens into a 140-400mm f/5.6L. I love it when I get stuff like this...

Timing is Everything

Now, I loose two whole stops, going from f/2.8 to f/5.6, but it is worth it to me, to have that zoom AND see 400mm.

That jump in stops usually results in an ISO bump. So yesterday, in the clouds, I had to shoot ISO800. I could have gotten my ISO down to 400, but I wanted to get 1/4000th.

U.S. OH-58D Kiowa Warrior?

It was nice in that game yesterday to be able to get those aircrafts when they showed up. It would have been impossible to get them with just my 70-200mm. It would have been difficult to get them with a 400mm prime. They came so fast that I pulled back to 140mm to find them, and then locked on them and zoomed to 400mm. They were probably there and gone, all four at once, in about 7 seconds.

U.S. C-130?

I love our military. Thanks for the flyby yesterday, guys. Hope the training went well.

U.S. UH-1 Huey?