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Base running is the process of running from one base to the other in a baseball match, and it is done by the members of the batting team. For scoring a run, base running is required in order to reach the home, and it is a very strategic part of the game. All players of the batting team must be aware of certain fundamentals of base running so that they display an improved version of their game. This article will define nine fundamentals of base running in Baseball.
There are nine fundamentals of base running in Baseball. First, the players must be aware of the running techniques requiring awareness of the game and timing of running. The second fundamental is the sliding technique; third is running through the first base, fourth is when you hit to the outfield; base should be round, fifth Infield fly rule must be known, sixth you should know when to tag up, seventh is getting a good lead, eighth is to grab signs of your base coach and last fundamental is to watch the pitcher.
Fundamentals of Base Running in Baseball
The nine fundamentals of base running are discussed below:
Technique of running
There are techniques involved in running the bases, and all players must have this basic knowledge to know when they need to run the bases. Speed is important in running but not only about running faster and harder. The players must also be aware of the game situations, their other teammates, and their timing for base running.
Players must keep their heads up to stay aware of what is happening around them, and then they must run carefully on the balls of their feet. They should always know where the Baseball is, and if not sure, a clue can come from their coach as well.
Arms are used by the player when they run to increase their momentum, and they allow the hands to move from down to up, but the rotation should not be on the elbows but on the shoulders. Baseball players’ running capacity is measured using sixty yards dash, and in Baseball, the most basic skill of a baseball player is his speed.
If the base runners want them to stay safe rather than being called out, then they should master the sliding techniques. This helps in advancing bases safely. Bent leg slide is the safest technique of sliding, among many other techniques.
How to do Bent Sliding?
The sliders must slide on the leg’s side, not their knees when players begin to slide. Firstly push the leg by initiating the slide and then form a shape of four by bending this leg under the other straight leg. Head placement is forward in this slide, and the chin is close to the chest. Arms are also bent at the elbows, and some players throw with both hands up in the air.
Running through the First Base
When the ball is put into play, and the runner is running to the first, he is allowed to run through the base once. The normal routine of the batters is to hit in the infield and then run through the first base.
Sliding is slower than running through the first base, so the first base is normally without the sliding technique. If the first base is close, then it is the best way of being safe for the players. The player must look to his right side after running through the first base. This is to look for the ball if it was hit in the foul territory by the first baseman.
If Base Hit to the outfield, then Round the Bases
Infield and outfield hits have different results. The batters run through the first base when they hit in the infield. The first base is round when the batters hit the outfield, and all other base runners follow this rule.
If the defense commits an error or mistake, then there is a huge chance that the base runners will reach closer to the next base if the first base is rounded by the batters. The distance gets reduced with every mistake committed by the defense. The chances of getting the runner out are not much, even if the defense plays with no errors.
Infield Fly Rule
All the base runners must understand the infield fly rule, which is a very important rule in Baseball. You can easily be out of the game if you don’t focus on this rule. Bases must be loaded or at least filled with two of the base runners, and less than two outs in a short fly ball must be there for this rule to get implemented.
If the umpire says infield fly, batters out while the ball is in the air, it’s not necessary for the base runners to move forward. If the ball is dropped, runners are not required to move. This rule prevents the double plays of the defense.
Knowing to Tag Up
When you are required to tag up is a must for the beginning players to understand. Whether the defense can catch the ball or not should be seen by the players if the ball gets hit in the air and less than two players are out.
Base runners must come back to the base before moving forward if the ball is caught by the defense. This situation is called tagging up. If the ball is dropped, there is no need to move back, and the base runner can skip the tagging part.
Having a Good Lead is important
Having an Aggressive lead for the base runners is important. The pitchers get worried when they see a nice lead, and this might affect their approach to the game. Bases can be stolen if the runner is fast with a good lead as well.
Secondary lead is equally important because it helps in moving forward to the next base or come back to the base you are already staying. Stolen basis delayed come with good secondary lead for base runners who are extra fast
Base Coach Gives Signs; try to pick them up
You must catch with your catch when you run the bases. Many times you cannot watch the ball and the game situation. also then, in this condition, you should look up to your coach because he is watching the game from every aspect.
Watch the Pitcher
Pick-off attempts and the habits of the pitcher can be known by watching the pitcher during the game. It also helps in moving the game in your favor as you are able to know the timing of the pitcher and play accordingly.
Base running has evolved as a complex art form, but if you follow the basic fundamentals of base running and practice those with time, then you can prove to be a match-winning base runner.
Is physical interaction allowed for base runners?
The base runners can physically help each other during the game, and it is not an illegal part of the baseball game.
How many fundamentals should a base runner follow?
There is no particular count of following the fundamentals, but the base runner must be aware of all of them so that he can use them whenever required by the game situation.