Pickle (also known as a Hotbox or Rundown) is a baseball situation, and popular kid’s game, that actually has nothing to do with food. Instead, “pickle” in this instance describes the difficult situation a baserunner may find themselves in when stranded between 2 bases while one of the infielders is in possession of the ball at one of those bases. This situation is often practiced making sure players are ready in case it occurs in a game. Of course, you can’t practice this drill without baseball gloves, baseballs or bases! Below we will discuss the pickle drill itself, as well as some tips for both fielders and runners to help better execute the play from both sides.
Skills & Training
Sacrifice bunts, or “sac” bunts, are exactly what they sound like. The batter is sacrificing themselves to advance runner(s) on base. If a batter successfully advances runners on an attempted sac bunt, they have done their job. Below we will get into further detail regarding all things sacrifice bunts and will provide some key tips and tricks that will hopefully help you practice and perfect the sacrifice bunt. Remember, you cannot perform a sacrifice bunt without a baseball bat, and batting gloves never hurt either!
When playing first base, it is very important that you are able to move and react quickly around the base, sometimes having to quickly adjust your feet depending on the accuracy of the throw you are catching. Typically, first basemen are bigger in stature, and play their biggest role at the plate. However, having a quality first baseman allows a team to avoid giving away outs on a routine basis. Below we will discuss certain responsibilities of a first basemen and provide some tips and tricks to hopefully help you learn the ins and outs of the position. Enjoy!
Fielding grounders is probably one of the most basic maneuvers in baseball and softball but is often a hard concept to grasp for beginners. We’re not going to talk about the grounders that rip past you with no time to think or react. Rather, we’ll discuss the more typical type of grounder, or balls hit right at you that require little to no movement. Most grounders will come to you at a medium to slow speed, depending on your position. These grounders tend to give you a bit of a reaction time. To field a ground ball, of course, you will need a glove. We have many baseball gloves and softball gloves to choose from that will make fielding a ground ball quite a bit easier! Below we will discuss some key components of fielding a ground ball and give you some fielding tips and tricks. Enjoy!
Baseball is an extremely repetitive sport and for this reason, overuse injuries are some of the most commonly seen injuries in the sport. In this article, we have broken down the main types of injuries when it comes to pitching, hitting, base running and catching. We will finish up by going over some of the best injury prevention strategies and provide coaches with a few tips and tricks when it comes to preventing injuries in youth baseball players. Keep in mind, we are NOT doctors, so, always consult your doctor if you experience an injury!
A major part of any baseball team’s success depends on how well they communicate on the field without actually giving away what they’re saying. Most of this silent communication comes from the catcher. As the player behind the plate, the catcher has the unique ability to see the entire field. This means a good catcher can give signals to a pitcher, indicating which pitch to throw and where to throw it. Good catcher-pitcher chemistry is often the winning combo a team needs to walk off the field victors.
The outfield is generally not the most sought after position in Little League. Most balls hit by Little Leaguers are hit in the infield and, as a result, most young players want to pitch, catch or play a base. Putting your best players in the infield is logical since that is where the action is. This changes as batters become more powerful and the outfield positions become more important... generally by high school.
Preventing injury should always be on the mind of the pitcher and coaching staff. Pitching is stressful to the arm and the human arm is not designed to withstand long periods of such tremendous stress. That goes without saying. Without proper training and care, a pitcher can so easily injure or even permanently damage their arm. And once an injury occurs, proper attention is key to keeping the injury from turning into something more serious.
The role of the catcher may be one of the most demanding of any baseball position, both physically and mentally. A quality catcher needs to know more than how to catch and throw the ball. He needs to be able to think on his feet and make split second decisions all game long. While catching is obviously physical, the position also requires a great amount of mental strength. A catcher who can handle the mental part of the position will quickly rise to the top.
The success of any baseball or softball hitter starts with the proper batting stance. Batting stance is just the first of three phases in hitting. From your stance, you move into your load position, and then you decide whether or not to swing the bat before following through on either decision. The name of the game in the batter’s box is concentration, and the best way for any hitter to focus is to be in a balanced, comfortable position to load weight on the back foot and shift it forward through the swing.
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