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Baseball Game Situations begin between innings...
There are some game situations on the field that will really make a coach look like they know what they are doing--or not. Many things that commonly occur in youth baseball do not happen in higher levels of baseball (like high school college or pro ball).
You want to look like you know what you are doing. Often low-information coaches neglect or have not been trained to do what the pros do.
Since the professional baseball folks are probably the best experts in the game lets take a look at some the features they do during ballgames.
For example, when I go to a youth level game and see a lefthanded shortstop (or anywhere except 1B, P, or OF) I’m thinking...
"Oh-No. We have a problem. Someone here has not been exposed to higher levels of baseball—we need to help show them the correct ways".
Here are some items that you would do correctly in baseball game situations, game-management and youth baseball game strategies that would say to the baseball folks, “Yes, the coaches are running the game the right way!”
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Transitions Between Innings: If we go back and look at what professional baseball players do between innings and copy them, then we should be pretty close to doing things correctly.
Huddles: You don’t see MLB players ‘huddling up’ between innings before and after they transition on and off the ballfield. Why? Well, the main reason is the youth baseball players need to get on the field to get their warm-up throws in. Especially, pitchers and catchers.
I would rather have my players hustling on the field and taking several practice throws than doing a ‘group cheer’ every inning.
The offensive team should be getting their first three or four hitters ready to bat. Coaches can use this time for baseball game strategy to talk to individual players on the side about baseball game situations that need attention. Group instruction is not always needed.
Keep the between-inning huddles to a minimum. Yes there might be occasional instances when the coach needs to address the whole team at once—but that is the exception—not the rule.
Huddling-up and doing a cheer every inning is not necessarily helpful to the process. The kids kind of know we need to score some runs so why do have to meet up and remind them of that every inning and get ‘fired up’.
If a player has to have a ‘get fired-up’ cheer to get them going every inning then we may be playing the wrong sport. Baseball is played often and is a marathon—not a once-a-week contest like an emotionally charged game like football.
Why do we REALLY huddle-up every inning? Because coaches want the parents to have the perception...
“I am really coaching em’ up aren’t I. Parents….Look at me, we are huddling up here so I must have some magical coaching points ands ‘cues’ going on here”.
SIDE NOTE: There is not much upside to huddling-up. If you want to make your words mean something then use the huddle sparingly. Otherwise your players just tune you out during the huddles anyway because it is just for ‘show’ to trick the parents.
Baseball game situations: Experienced coaches are really good at between inning transitioning. It will be hard to run the game perfectly, but keeping the game flowing is important.
Sometimes running the games and all the baseball game situations can be a bit overwhelming with everything going on. With all the hoopla and substituting and stuff it gets pretty busy.
As the season goes on you will see your players catch on to your methods. Players like some structure and procedures. Teach them how to transition quickly on and off the field which will give them more opportunities to practice and prepare to hit the ball hard, far and often.Back Home Page
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|Skip- Came across your books & videos 2 years ago at the
end of the season.
I implemented your techniques the next season and can't thank you enough. The kids love practice, we accomplish a lot, and most importantly they all develop throughout the season. I don't worry much if we win or lose just as long as we try and they get better.
My pitchers only throw fastballs and a change up and we do just fine. If the other team hits the ball, great it gives the defense an opportunity to make a play.
I never coach from the box, I just encourage them to hit. And they all know the have the green light on 3-0. The best thing I can do for them is make them better hitters and the only way is to hit! By the way my kids are Junior Little league ages 13-14. Zach, Stockton, CA...
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