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The high school baseball outfield drills are conducted so that outfielders can improve their skills and showcase those skills in major events. The outfielders have to focus on their running, body movements and especially hip movements hence they play a crucial role in the team.
High School Baseball Outfield Drills
At the high school level, baseball competitions are not ordinary but major events in many countries. The students are given professional pieces of training to improve their running and fielding. There are many high school baseball outfield drills such as doorstep, wall drill, head drill, ball grip drill, and several others. These drills are either performed, with partners or coaches, in a team or individually.
Required skills for outfielders:
The outfielders are very important players in the team and their reliability is very important to win matches. The outfielders need to practice maintaining their bodies often. The following are the areas where they have to focus.
- Running: The outfielders should have the ability to run fast because the ball may be running here and there corresponding to weather conditions. And there is no excuse to avoid weather conditions.
- Footwork: As already mentioned that fast running is very important for outfielders and for that it is necessary to maintain footwork. The light footwork can ease your running.
- Hand and eye: When one is in the position of catching a ball, one needs to track the position of the ball and then place their hand in the right direction according to the pitch conditions. This collaboration needs to be maintained throughout the match.
- Team Collaboration: Aside from the outfielders there are other players as well in the ground. So make sure you are not going to collide with the other players. Team coordination is important.
Baseball at the high school level:
In most of the countries where baseball is a celebrated sport, the pieces training is given from early stages. The reason for this is to prepare these high school children for major competitions in the future. Several players from the high school level are selected to play at big matches at a higher level by renowned coaches.
High school drills:
There are several techniques that needs to be focused so each technique needs to be practiced individually.
- Across the middle drill: The purpose of this drill is to improve the running technique. Secondly, to increase the range of outfielders. For this drill, the outfielder needs to have a partner. The outfielder stands 20 feet apart from the partner and will start running in a straight direction after the partner gives a call. Later the ball is thrown. The drill is repeated from different directions.
- Head drill: This aims at understanding the technique of catching the ball while running. The ball is thrown from above, the outfielders have to run and catch the ball.
- Drop Step Drill: This drill is because the outfielders are always moving and not in one position. This drill aims to make sure that the player doesn’t drop a catch. For this drill, the only requirement is a cone, and outfielders are supposed to wear gloves. This drill is performed on grass. One should place the cone in such a way that the outfielder can run in all directions from the cone.
- Ball grip drill: This drill is designed so that outfielders learn how to secure the ball in their hands properly because one can only throw the ball in a straight direction if their initial grip over the ball is correct. This drill focuses on the training of this ball.
- Long toss drill: This drill aims to improve the timing of an outfielder while heading toward the ball. This drill is performed in the gym. It is done within a group. All the players form a line and they throw the ball in such a way that it bounces back to the next person in the line.
Jumping and throwing drill:
- Crow hop drill: This drill is to improve jumping technique and momentum. It also improves the throw of an outfielder. This drill is very important for the outfielders as it strengthens the throw. This is the best approach to improve your throw in minimum time. The technique is slightly different for right and left-hand outfielders.
- Wall drill: The purpose of this drill is to guide the players not to crash into the wall while running to catch the ball. The outfielder needs to have a partner for this drill.
- Fence drill: In this drill, the outfielders learn to communicate with their fellow players to their right or left. Players negotiate with each other in this drill about who is calling for the ball to avoid a collision. There is also discussion and selection of one person as a backup in case the selected one fails to catch the ball.
- Sinking line drive drill: To catch the ball one has to predict correctly which position would be most suitable for successfully catching the ball. This drill focuses on this decision-making ability. It also trains about time management. This drill is done along with two to three players and the coach. The techniques that outfielders need to learn are:
- Diving and falling
These above-mentioned drills are usually practiced at the high school level in different countries where baseball is of great importance such as the USA, Japan, and Korea.
Baseball is one modern sport that is played in many countries. The players go through many stages but the high school level can be regarded as the building block of these baseball players. The outfielder is one important position in baseball that needs training and practice. Along with training, the presence of the mind is necessary. There are many drills as already discussed to improve the running, stamina, jump, throw, and catching for outfielders. Most of these drills are easy to practice and can be done on an individual basis as well. These drills prepare outfield players for all the challenges they face on the ground.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the most important skill for an outfielder?
The outfielders need to be strong in defensive techniques and catching the ball. Also, most of the high school drills are focused on improving ball catching.
- Can one practice outfield drills just on your own?
There are several drills that one can do themselves. Out of all the drills mentioned that do not need a partner can be done individually.
- Which is the most crucial outfield position?
The most crucial position is the center. There are several directions where the ball can go. There is a lot of available space around that outfielder.