Skip to main content

My definition of first-move stealing is a jump that's so hair-trigger that:  On a throwover, even if R1 decided to return to the bag, he couldn't do it successfully.

Although I'm verbal and stubborn, every season some of my stealers can't force themselves go first-move.

Also, in spite of the fact that I repeatedly state,   "If he pitcher throws over, it's my bad--it's on me."

I'm talking about decent, coach-able HSV players who get respectable jumps vs. LHPs, but not first-move. 

edited to say:

I spend considerable energy coaching the running game.  I've been doing it a long time.  It takes persistence.

I'm continually amazed that some  simple teaches in baseball--such as  "go on first-move"--don't necessarily sink in.

 

 

Last edited by game7
Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

I'm not sure there's a question there, but... My son's travel coach taught LHP to read the base runner and throw to first if the runner broke on first move leg kick.  He went ballistic if a runner was able to steal on first move without a pickoff throw to first.  There is no umpire at 1st in this situation so even if it is a balk, is very difficult to see and call by the plate umpire.

If you are asking how to train runners to go on first move, like many things, nothing works better than pulling the kid from the game and letting him think about it on the bench for an inning or two.

Here's a new rule that the Milb was going to implement (RipkenFanSon really likes):

As such, the new rule will eliminate the Andy Pettitte-style pickoff move where a lefty hangs on his back leg before either stepping toward first base and throwing over or stepping toward home to pitch. Inside moves at second base are also prohibited by the rule change.

I think I understand what you are talking about when it comes to the thought process of stealing bases, but I had to remember back a “few” years to when I played. Being completely honest I was a fast MIF with WTP unless you hung something, so basically I was always looking to turn that single into a double and so on.  Why don’t kids get a good jump off a LHP first move?  Because if you are going off the “first move” then the first thing you should do is take a larger than normal lead,  makes you feel really uncomfortable. Basically you know that if you make one more move to your right there is no way in hell you are getting back in time. Have you ever been picked off?  I can tell you from experience that it sucks and 99% of all people watching the game thinks your stupid. They don’t know the coach told you to go on first move they just see your dumbass running into an easy out.  

I know that isn’t the answer you probably wanted, but I would only coach this technique to a select few players. Those that are track stars. And even then it’s because the pitcher has thrown over twice and not even his mother has seen him throw over three times. Also it helps if the 1st baseman has two left feet and one arm 🙋‍♂️ because against any decent opposition (hangs his leg or even slide steps) your out if your speed isn’t elite. 

I used to tell them if you do what I say and get out I will own it.  It all depended on the LHP and the first baseman.  Sometimes the pitcher would have good move but the first baseman was not very good so we put our money on our speed versus the first baseman catching it and throwing to second.  But as has been said that was a small number of our players.

Missouri and Kansas umpires allowed the lhp to throw to second if you broke on first movement from first.  I argued it for three years that the pitcher could only throw to an occupied base but their explanation was that once he got 2/3 of the way to second it was considered occupied so by the time the ball got there it was occupied.  I argued that the base had to be occupied when the play started but to no avail.  Gotta love rule interpretation.  That made it very hard to steal on a decent lefty.

I can tell you from experience that it sucks and 99% of all people watching the game thinks your stupid. They don’t know the coach told you to go on first move they just see your dumbass running into an easy out.  


Agreed.

Fans don't realize the difference between "picked-off" and "picked-off-caught-stealing" (POCS).

The former is the player's fault. The latter is the 3b coach's fault.

Btw, we coach our runners to take a shorter than normal lead when they're first-move stealing vs. a leg-lift LHP.  We're looking to reduce the chance of a throwover.

 

 

Last edited by game7

You could also tell him that you understand it sucks getting picked off but if he wants to steal against lefties he needs to go first move or he can't steal. That way he still has a choice and either it motivates him to do what is necessary to steal or it makes him not steal at all.some people just shouldn't steal at higher levels.

Last edited by Dominik85
@Consultant posted:

Watch the front right knee if it breaks the plane to the left, the pitcher must throw home or it is a "balk"

Bob

To be clear - the plane you describe, is the plane of the back edge of the rubber... correct?

Many coaches have the misunderstanding that it is the plane of the left knee, or the plane of the front edge of the rubber.  And it must be the entire foot.  Not the right knee knee.   As someone mentioned, with the BU positioned behind the mound in a 2 man system, that is very hard to call.  A good LHP can get away with a lot of borderline moves at the lower levels.

6:2:4:F

ART. 4 . . . Balk. If there is a runner or runners, any of the following acts by a pitcher while he is touching the pitcher’s plate is a balk:

f. failing to pitch to the batter when the entire non-pivot foot passes behind the perpendicular plane of the back edge of the pitcher’s plate, except when feinting or throwing to second base in an attempt to put out a runner.

 

@PitchingFan posted:

Missouri and Kansas umpires allowed the lhp to throw to second if you broke on first movement from first.  I argued it for three years that the pitcher could only throw to an occupied base but their explanation was that once he got 2/3 of the way to second it was considered occupied so by the time the ball got there it was occupied.  I argued that the base had to be occupied when the play started but to no avail.  Gotta love rule interpretation.  That made it very hard to steal on a decent lefty.

It is like that all over the country - and not an interpretation.  It is written very clearly.  (Bold is my edit).

In fact, if a runner breaks on 1st move, the P can pivot to 2nd...  feint the throw and then if disengaged from the rubber, throw to 1st if the runner is returning. 

Another misunderstanding of the rules, that there are different rules for LHP and RHP.  So even a RHP - when the runner breaks on 1st move can pivot and throw to second... even if unoccupied.

6:2:4:B

ART. 4 . . . Balk. If there is a runner or runners, any of the following acts by a pitcher while he is touching the pitcher’s plate is a balk:

b. failing to step with the non-pivot foot directly toward a base (occupied or unoccupied) when throwing or feinting there in an attempt to put out, or drive back a runner; or throwing or feinting to any unoccupied base when it is not an attempt to put out or drive back a runner; 

If the coaches really studied the rules, there are a lot if small things that they can use to help give their players an edge.

@NewUmpire I can appreciate a correct call, but honestly in most parts of the country what you described is going to be called a balk 99.9% of the time.

I also think some don't quite understand what going on 1st move is when compared to a straight steal of a LHP. When you go on first move, you literally on going on the FIRST MOVE of the pitcher. Doesn't even have to be his right foot, although most of the time it is, and I'm surely NOT waiting for him to cross some imaginary line. It is something that you have to look for. Maybe he lowers his glove, maybe his hip starts to rock, maybe it is something as simple as when he turns his head to home, etc.... this list goes on and on. You are basically taking advantage of the human mind. Pitchers are creatures of habit and once they have ingrained a motion into their heads thousands of times it is very hard for them to not do it. Now this is where being REALLY REALLY fast and getting a bigger than usual leads help. I'm not talking about 1/2 way down the line, but 1 to 2 steps more than usual. I would also recommend doing this after the pitcher has thrown over his max number of times. Those 1 to 2 steps are crucial to take. They buffer not only against a throw over to first, but also against a slide step to home. And like I said to start with if the pitcher wheels to 2nd, feints into a cartwheel, and runs around in a circle, 2nd base is yours as 99% of all umpires will call that a balk (whether it is or not).   

Add Reply

×
×
×
×
Link copied to your clipboard.
×