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This is a great question. We can't start in Michigan until March 15th, and when we do it usually is inside for the first couple of weeks.
First of all, I don't think you CAN teach your players everything in the time you have. I believe strongly in a great program at the younger levels that teach the fundamentals that you are looking for in your varsity kids, so that they already have a lot of it by the time they make the jump to the varsity.
As far as focus, I focus on fundamentals...then move on to fundamentals...and I usually finish each practice with some fundamentals! I am a firm believer in doing things correctly with proper repetitions so that kids take the field confident and secure. We do as much live hitting as we can once we get outside, since we spend the winter and the aforementioned first 2 weeks inside and see all machines. Our pitchers start throwing December 1st, so they are on a strict plan so that they are prepared to throw about 90 pitches on Opening Day (usually the first week of April).
I personally have a "Baseball Bible", if you will, that I have put together over the years. It is a huge binder that contains everything I do in all facets of coaching (fundraising, pre-season conditioning, winter workouts, practices, contact numbers, etc.). I think this is really helpful. I suggest that all coaches create a list of all the things that they need to teach before and at times during the season, and use it as a checklist that they look at before and after every practice.
Organization is the key - you can't "wing it" and be a good baseball coach. Knowing what you must get done and getting a sense of when and how to do it is extremely important....much like a lesson plan for teachers.
Coach Knight,

It sounds like you really have it all together! I too am building a Bible, but don't have many years of experience to build on (5yrs) I coach HS and Babe Ruth (league, not the player). I am very interested in your statement about not winging it and to have a season plan of sorts. I am wondering if you have an outline or a copy of your topic plans? I am addopting mine so far from Ron Polk and Baseball Excellence 200 skills, but would like some ideas from a handson been there done that person. If you could post here, or I could give you my email.
I think the biggest thing is organization. For about the last 10 years, we have put on the calendar things to be accomplished for that day.When you are trying to get 4 teams ready with only a field and a half, it takes alot of prep time just to organize where everyone should be, not only skills to be taught for the day. I hate when coach's try to shoot from the hip, and have no plan for the day. Your players will be punctual and accountable when you lead them doing those things.
Organization and fundamentals are at the front. But... don't forget that during your practice sessions you need to break up the "work" with some fun, competitive stuff. All drills and no fun will make your players stale towards practice after a while.


1. BP with groups competing against each other.
2. Fielding practice with the same atmosphere (team with the most errors loses, throwing or fielding)
3. Baserunning contests
4. Bunting contests.

As you can see, we are big on the "contests" part of practices as well as drills. We have found that it works very well even up through the older guys.

Frank Coit
Head Coach
San Diego Prospects Baseball Club
I'd love to show it to you...but then I'd have to kill you!
I have all of it on disk in one place or another, but it would take hours to get you all of it.
Below, I'll post the different areas (I have them separated) that I have and a few things in each area. Hope that is sufficient.

1- Scheduling
*schedules for all 3 teams, winter workout groups/phone numbers, bus times, lineups

2- Contacts
*all emails, phone numbers, and addresses of all players, coaches, AD's, vendors, etc.

3- Recruiting info
*info for players looking to play at the collegiate level - what to look for, how to find a good fit, regulations,etc. I put together a packet and conduct a seminar for my guys every year.

4- Uniforms & Equipment
*inventory lists, new ideas/potential purchases, check-out lists, pricing guides, Needs vs. Wants list

5- Fundraising
*new year projections, past numbers, budget, info for all booster club members, booster plans/actions as well as sub-committees, media guide information

6- Tryouts
*stations w/ instructions, preseason info, facility diagram, charts for evaluations

7- Handbooks (I give every player a detailed handbook every season)
*PRIDE letter, individual position expectation sheets, Code of Conduct, lineup organization (hitters & pitchers), Keys to greatness

8- Coaching Cornerstones
*letters from former players (motivation for me, not the guys), practice checklist for all needed elements, field maintenance checklists

9- Miscellaneous
*teacher lists of student/athletes in the program, field specs, motivational speaking outline

10- Winter workouts
*strength training, self-evaluations, workout session sheets, overview of workouts, grades (eligibility?)

11- Athletic Director
*contacts, important dates, order forms, athletic handbook info, receipts from clinics

12- Clinics/Camps/Private Lessons
*brochures, instructional guidelines, contacts

13- Spring Trip
*We go on one every year. This contains hotel, airline (if applicable), food, and entertainment information, as well as contacts of coaches for field usage and booster approval forms/packets

14- Parent Stuff
*5 keys to a successful parent/coach relationship, meeting info, parent syndrome article (from HSBBWEB)

15- Off-season
*reminders of things that need to be done and a calendar to help with organization

16- practices
*practice plans, itemized list of needs, do's and don't's lists, etc.

**I know this is a lot, but I wanted to adequately show you. I take great pride in the time I've put into this book, and I am always looking for ways to make it better.

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