Fielders technique to avoid hitting runner in back

Example, run gets picked off by throw from pitcher or catcher etc...but takes off to next base full speed instead of diving back  (whether it be first basemen throwing to second, or third basemen throwing home)

What is the proper/most successful method to teach youth fielders how to get the throw/catch WITHOUT hitting the runner in the back? Anyone know drills to work the proper technique? Thank you 

Original Post

Not at all. I have some methods I used but I’m always looking for drills and methods from others as well and this one in particular. It seems trivial but with the younger 11 year old players I’ve seen them struggle in real situations and throw it away or hit runners in back when it should be a relatively easy out. Whether your old school or not, if you’re not willing to continually trying get better too, you’re not doing your best..

 

now..back to the topic. Anything? Thank you.

I see this as less of a drill for the thrower and more of a drill for the receiver.   Say R3 - ball hit to 3B  throw home...  the C has to establish the throwing target in a way that helps the fielder avoid hitting the runner.  If a force ... then extend up 1b line with foot on corner of the plate - play it like a firstbaseman.  The runner (if doing their running correctly) would have already established the baseline well in foul territory.   The receiver of the ball (not the thrower) can see the play unfold more easily as the fielder is occupied with watching the ball into the glove.  The fielder verbalizes  inside / outside to the fielder so as they come up to throw, they have an idea where it is going before they even look.  At the youth level ... not looking to turn 2.  Getting the runner is first / top priority.

There’s no reason to reinvent the game. If the runner takes off on a pickoff attempt move inside the runner and fire the ball. If it’s a dropped third move inside or outside depending on which way the ball bounces. The receiver has to set up with a visible target. Never throw through or over the top of the runner. 

What the runner should do is run in the direction he sees the receiver setting up without going outside the baseline. 

Have the initial receiver (say the 1b on a pickoff) close distance to the ball so he creates an angle to 2b clear of the baseline. Have the next receiver (say the SS on the pick attempt) be inside the bag to create a clear throwing lane.

The only time the runner is an obstacle is if the fielders setup with him right between them, so avoid that.

No drills to worry about. Just rep it.

Let's say a LHP picks a guy clean off 1B & the runner is breaking on the leg lift. The 1B would come to the pick (Move his feet) The SS sets up inside the bag at 2B (towards the plate, not the OF). This opens a clear lane for the throw. Same principles apply on any pick to any base where the runner breaks upon throw over. You have to go get it as the receiver. The key is drills getting them to move their feet & line up the throw with a clear lane.

Get your OF's & Pitchers as runners. Get your 1B at the bag & IF's at SS, pick to 1B, have the runners break & NOT STOP. 1B comes & gets it, lines feet & fires to SS, no hesitation. This is not a rundown drill. Next, get the runners on 2B then 3B & repeat. Let catchers throw some picks to mix it up. Make sure the runners do not cheat (they get bored!!)

** Make sure pitchers follow the throw over to 1B if you use them to pick from the mound.**

**If catcher or pitcher picks to 2B, pitchers back up 3B**

**If catcher picks to 3B & rundown or a break, pitchers back up home, along with 1B, SS rotates to 3B for a rundown**

Steve A. posted:

Let's say a LHP picks a guy clean off 1B & the runner is breaking on the leg lift. The 1B would come to the pick (Move his feet) The SS sets up inside the bag at 2B (towards the plate, not the OF). This opens a clear lane for the throw. Same principles apply on any pick to any base where the runner breaks upon throw over. You have to go get it as the receiver. The key is drills getting them to move their feet & line up the throw with a clear lane.

Get your OF's & Pitchers as runners. Get your 1B at the bag & IF's at SS, pick to 1B, have the runners break & NOT STOP. 1B comes & gets it, lines feet & fires to SS, no hesitation. This is not a rundown drill. Next, get the runners on 2B then 3B & repeat. Let catchers throw some picks to mix it up. Make sure the runners do not cheat (they get bored!!)

 

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