In these drills players are working on tracking the ball all the way into the glove. This is a crucial habit to get into along with getting low to the ground so the ball can be seen better.
These drills are mainly for your assistance in supporting the development of basic fielding skills for groundballs. Maintaining a a focus on simple body movements and good strong form instead of results-based will create a stronger athlete for the long-term.
Drill 1 – Getting Into A Good Fielding Position
This drill assists players recognize a good fielding position and provides coaches with an opportunity to observe and help players. It also strengthens and stretches the muscles in the hips to allow a lower, stronger fielding position.
Line up two groups of players with partners facing each other roughly 30-40 feet apart. One ball per group.
- On the coaches whistle or call, the players with the ball pretend to field the ball in a good position and then throw to partner.
- The partner catches the ball and immediately go into a throwing position, working on receiving and transferring the ball into a good throwing position.
- The players with the baseball on your call or whistle gets into a proper fielding position, pretends to field the ball and then throws the ball to his partner.
- Continues for 10-20 throws each.
Drill 2 – Forehand Fielding
Players here are working on a ball that is hit to the forehand side, right handed throwers will field on glove side left, left handed throwers will field on glove side right. Once the ball is in the glove the drill allows us to either throw the ball to a partner or continue to work on just the fielding position.
Same as above. Two groups of players, 30-40 ft apart facing a partner. One side has baseballs.
- Players with the ball gets into a forehand position on coach’s call. This position (for
a righty thrower) will be left foot stepping to the left and right knee down towards the ground
to drop body lower to ground. The glove in front of the left foot, not behind.
- From here the players bring the ball to the center of the body and steps toward target.
- The other partner on catching the ball will catch and transfer into a good throwing position.
- The partner with the ball now will do the same as above, going through the motion of a proper low to ground
forehand position and throw to partner who than receives and transfer into a throwing
position before repeating forehand position.
- 10-20 throws each.
Drill 3 – Roll in Front, Field and Throw
This drill works on the ball that gets past the fielder or a ball not picked up cleanly. Every fielder experiences bad hops , hit off a shoe or the chest and carom nearby. Educating young players on tough bounces and errors do occur but we can still recover to make a play and not giving up on a play is important.
Same as above. Two groups of even number of players per side, partners facing each other.
- Players with the ball start in a proper fielding position. On coaches call and in this position, the players roll the ball out in front.
- Players when approaching the ball go to the side of the ball while fielding it and throwing it to the partner. If the ball is rolling, they scoop the ball up with the glove and throwing hand like picking up a bundle of hay. If the ball is stopped they can pick up the ball bare-handed if comfortable. (Still bring the glove and head
down to keep our body controlled).
- Throw ball to partner.
- Partner catches the ball and immediately works on receiving and transferring into a throwing position.
- Partner with the ball gets into good fielding position and repeats above movements on coaches call.
Drill 4 – Roll Ball Behind
This drill is practically the same as the above drill however we work on a ball to the side or slightly behind a fielder. Again the emphasis is to teach players that bad bounces occur and how to respond positively. What we do when tough bounces happen needs to be second-nature as there is very often still a play to be made.
Same as above.
Same as above. One noted difference is to have the players after they pick up the ball to shuffle towards the partner to gather throwing power. The previous drill has forward momentum while picking up the ball.
Drill 5 – Side Shuffle, Field, Toss
Build understanding and strength of a good fielding position as we move side to side. This drill is a continuation of Drill #1 but includes movement. The earlier the age an athlete becomes comfortable with a deep fielding position the quicker he/she develops.
Two cones are placed 6-15’ apart depending on skill level. Either using a coach as the roller or players take turns rolling to each other in sets of 8-12. The roller is roughly 5-10’ away.
- Fielder starts in a proper position, the roller begins by rolling the ball towards the other cone.
- The fielder shuffles to the side and centers his body with the ball and fields it.
- The fielder under hands the ball to the roller and begins to side shuffle back to the original cone.
- Repeat 8-12 times.
Drill 6 – Four-Corner Team GBs (ground balls)
Drill works on teamwork, communication and has multiple groundball repetitions. It allows the coach an opportunity to observe and work with individual players as the group
continues the drill. Also can be split up into groups or competitions and is a fantastic pre-game warm up drill for footwork.
Set up stations of four players roughly 40-50 feet apart. Form a square and place one player at each corner with no glove. Start with one baseball and go clockwise.
- On coaches call the player will roll the ball to the next player and so on in a clockwise direction.
- With no glove the players will need to bend their knees more to field with both hands.
- As they improve we can either add a second ball at the opposite direction or switch the rolling direction which than makes us move our feet more.
- Challenge the players by thinking a 3rd ball is possible to do well, or have two groups challenge each other for amount in 30 or 45 seconds fielded cleanly.
Drill 7 – Good ‘Ol Batted GBs
Players are to react to groundballs off the coaches bat as if live game play. Players are expected to get into a ready position prior to the ball being contacted, reacting to the ball in
which direction and field the ball and get into a good throwing position.
Players are in a single-file line, or two groups of single-file lines if coaches are available. After a ball is fielded and thrown in, the players goes to back of line.
- Player is to be in proper fielding position and slowly creeping towards the coach as the ball is batted.
- Player reacts to ball and fields it, shuffles his feet into a good throwing position and completes throw to the coach/player catching for the hitter.
- Player goes to the back of line and the GBs are continued for 10 minutes or so for repetitions.
- Can challenge the players by hitting left, right, choppers to mix it up and make it as game like as possible.
If any questions about these drills, have a drill to share or need a person to bounce an idea off of or talk baseball, feel free to contact our Director of Baseball Operations & Player Development, Jordan Broatch or by phone at 604-897-6607.