Alright, let’s look at the responsibilities
of the short stop. The short stop is your infield general; he gets to make a lot of
the calls. He determines the calls and the signals from the dugout, from the head coach.
He often times disseminates those to the other infielders. For example, if you want to play
back at a double play depth then the short stop will signal that. If he wants the corners
to play in against a bunt, the first and third baseman, he’ll signal that. He’ll also determine
the infield shift, where the second baseman lines up and where he, himself, lines up.
He’ll generally line up about midway on the left side of the field, splitting the left
side of the field with the third baseman. The short stop has priority on all calls.
If he calls the third baseman off, then the third baseman needs to back off and allow
the short stop field the ball. If he calls the second baseman off, then the second baseman
needs to back off and allow the short stop field the ball. Again, he is your infield
general. Now his responsibilities obviously include fielding the ball if it’s hit to the
right side of the infield and making a throw to first base to get an out. Also, he sometimes
has to cover second base if the ball is hit over to the right side of the field. The short
stop may have to come in, field the ball, and make the throw to first to make the double
play. Also, the short stop may have to play deep into the outfield to cut a ball off that’s
coming from either the left fielder or the center fielder to make a throw coming in.
Sometimes, you’ll see a short stop travel into the short outfield to make a play on
a fly ball. That would be the only time when the short stop is not in command. The outfielder
can call the short stop off if the short stop is giving pursuit of a fly ball and the outfielder
believes he has a better angle. But, generally, the short stop is in command at all times…one
of the most important players on the field at short stop, and that’s a look at his responsibilities.