Infield ready position in youth baseball – LLWS 2015 Texas demonstrates.

In youth baseball one of the easiest things
for a fielder to do, but one that is so often neglected, is getting into ready position
on every pitch. Any player, no matter how good or bad they
are at fielding, is capable of getting into ready position. So why don’t youth players do it more consistently? It may be in part because it’s never seen
in televised games. We see the pitcher, catcher, and hitter, but
we don’t see the infielders right before the pitch. Next time you’re at a live Major League
Baseball game, watch the infielders move. They do it every time. Being in ready position at the right time
is crucial to having fielding range as an infielder. Some youth coaches teach players to “creep”
as the pitcher starts his pitch. I am not a fan of this method because it’s
not teaching what should actually happen, when it should happen and why. Not to mention I’ve seen short stops so
close in they looked like they were fielding a bunt by the time the pitch was thrown. This coach is simply telling his kids to be
moving on the pitch, which is arguably better than just standing there like a stature, but
players shouldn’t be moving when the ball is actually hit, they should be ready. I’m also not a fan of teaching youth players
to do the hop. It’s generally too much for a young player
when being ready is the key. What I prefer to teach is for fielders to
time their movement off of the pitcher. They ought to take two steps, one with each
foot, and land the second step at bat contact, thumbs up preferably, but out front at a minimum. They are on the balls of their feet and ready
to move any direction. When you see a player who is not in ready
position, before he can make a move toward a hit ball, he first must drop to a ready
stance and then move. It takes time and reduces range by a significant
amount. It’s not possible for a person to make a
sudden move without getting into that ready stance first, so we want kids in that stance
before they need to move. To finish this video, you can watch the 2015
Little League World Series Texas team demonstrate to perfection what we are talking about. Listen to the commentators. that we will watch tonight is the pre-pitch
preparation of the Pearland defense. Why is that so important? Well, everything starts with getting a good
jump. And to get a good jump all the players have
to get into rhythm with the pitcher. He’s actually the conductor of the orchestra. I mean they all have movements related to
his movements in his windup and his release point. Now they have to expect the ball. They track the ball out of his hand anticipating
the angle of the bat will make at contact with the ball so they can get a good jump
as the ball is being hit. And it’s paid off. Their defense has been nearly perfect this
week. When you get a good jump you go after the
ball with confidence and you feel much better about your chances of being able to handle
the play. When you get a bad jump your body knows it
and your really feeling it as you move toward it and a lot more errors are made when you
get a bad jump. Boy you can see the entire infield stepping
into the play and Tadlock, that’s 95 plus, 97 plus at MLB distance at the knees in the
black. Hard to catch up to.

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