Practice Scripts--Game situations
by D. J. Graham
(Nashville, AR, USA)
Hitters focus on approximately 25 pitches per game. Fielders have to discipline their mind to be prepared for 100 or more. That's tough ~ It takes work! (Dorfman and Kuehl) The Mental Game of Baseball
D.J. asked: I am trying to find new game situation scripts to execute in practice.
Like a 21 out simulation in practice where we try to put our kids in different situations. We usually like about 25 play script that covers a variety of good baseball.
Was there anything you had--that you enjoyed and believed in for practice. Was it scripted, or you just 1 fungo at during this time and randomly hit it everywhere?
Any help appreciated.
Rick answered: D.J., thank you for your question!
All the methods you described above are good ones.
My personal preference is to make it a game situation, hit your fungoes to create whatever situations you would like to set up. Play each half inning for the 3 outs. If you have two complete teams, rotate every half inning, as you would in a game.
If not, go a full game set of innings with one group, then rotate in those players who have been base running, and start a new set and game.
There is a description, as well as some variations at baseball drills team defense.
I like playing it in a game format so that players have to think ahead of the play, as they would in a game, to include base running. Valuable tool for getting them to think on their feet and on the move.
As the fungo hitter, you still maintain full control of the action, so you are able to select what you want to see; but the players have to react. Game situation vs. drill situation.
You can stop the action at any spot you wish to point out where each individual player should be at that point.
Defensively, on any ball hit during a game, every player has someplace they should be moving to, either to back up, cover a base, create a cutoff, field a ball, etc.
If you aren't moving on defense, on every ball hit, you are not doing your job. It may only be a couple of steps that you get in, before it is done; but if those steps are not built into your skill set, when the time comes that those 2 steps need to be 40 or 50 feet, you will come up short or late.
Players abilities to think and react on the run make them into those exciting players everyone loves to watch play the game.
With this drill there are no limits to what you can accomplish. Team communication, adjustments to events that go wrong on a play that are better off learned in a practice setting than in a live game.
As a player I loved this drill because it was full speed with a lot of reps. Inter-squad scrimmages are beneficial on occasion; but this drill gets as close to live defense as you can get with a maximum number of reps.
As a coach, I use it constantly to keep them sharp.
Good luck as you go forward.
Yours in baseball,
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