Every pitch will begin with the catcher positioned in the sign stance. This is where the you will give the pitcher the sign for the pitch that has been selected. After the sign is given, you will transition to the receiving stance. There are two types of receiving stances. The game situation will dictate whether you will use the normal receiving stance or a blocking stance.
Comfortable, relaxed stance on your toes with feet under butt
Knees pointed toward middle infielders
Imagine giving sign to the shortstop (slight shift to block view of 1st base coach)
Hang glove off left knee to block view of 3rd base coach
Keep thumb against cup
Only move fingers – not wrist or forearm
Transition to receiving stance by sliding – DO NOT HOP
Receiving Stance – Normal
Give the pitcher the best target and the umpire the best view
This drill can also be called the “Location Tee Drill” because you move the location of the tee. It is the most basic tee drill I have kids do, but also the most important. This is a drill you will be doing for the rest of your baseball life.
As with any drill, have a plan. Don’t just put a ball on the tee and start hacking away. Know and really understand what you are working on. Slow things down and get back to basics. Make every swing perfect every time.
Address home plate as you would during a regular at-bat. Do not change your batting stance or where you stand in the box. The tee will be moving, not you.
The picture below shows where to place the tee for a right handed batter. A lefty would simply reverse Figure 1 and Figure 3. Take 3 swings at each position (9 total). Your goal is to hit a line drive.
In these days of pitch counts and innings limits, why in the world would you waste a pitch with an 0-2 count? Why give the hitter something for free? Most likely, your “waste” pitch will be so far out of the strike zone that nobody will even consider swinging at it.
Throw the ball 2-3 inches off the black and put the hitter away. Make them chase the ball and hit it anywhere on the bat other than the barrel. If you show the umpire you can consistently hit the catcher’s mitt, you will get called strikes on that pitch just off the plate.
If you don’t believe me, perhaps Greg Maddux will convince you not to be wasteful? Hat tip to the Baseball Dudes Facebook page.
A pop fly should be an easy play. Any kid playing travel ball should be able to catch a routine popup. However, the plays often create a circus in the field because players are not prepared. A team that is prepared and communicates well should not have a problem.
CF has priority over corner outfielders (LF, RF)
Outfielders have priority over infielders
SS has priority over everyone in the infield
Middle infielders (2B, SS) have priority over corner infielders (1B, 3B)
Corner infielders (1B, 3B) have priority over P and C