The Ole Ball Game

Infield Box Drill

infielder setting his feet to throw

The infield box drill is a fun and effective activity for developing quick hands and feet, as well as throwing accuracy for players. It also provides them an additional opportunity to work on anticipation, so that they are making their pivot to throw, as they make the catch, not after they make the catch.

Ultimately, the speed and quickness gained in the drill will equate to more double plays and less throwing errors for all players.

An additional benefit is gained in a sharper looking "around the horn", following a strikeout. The same quickness and accuracy is what makes the finish on that strikeout play look so good. Balls thrown away, slow and sloppy footwork and lazy tosses all equate to a negative effect on the defense, negating the big positive of the strikeout.

It becomes a matter of infield pride, the desire to be a step above the competition, in all areas of the game ~ to include what seems to be a minor detail, the throw around after a strikeout.

What Do You Need?

Equipment Needed

  1. Infielders with gloves.

  2. Baseballs.

  3. Infield with bases.

  4. Set Up

    • Players at and on their respective bases, catchers at home plate. The full infield area can be utilized, or make the box shorter to fit your needs.

    • Baseball starts at home plate, and can go in either direction.

    • Balls going clockwise are step/catch/throw. Reverse the baseball and footwork can be glove side turns, and inside pivots.

    • Run with just one set of 4 infielders, or additional players can rotate in on the fly.

    • Yell reverse at any point for the players to change the direction of the baseball, as well as the pivot used.

    Infield Box Drill Tips ~ From the Dugout

    infield box drill tips ~ from the dugout

    • Work to get players moving their feet and body to the baseball.

    • Catch the ball with two hands, soft in, quick out.

    • Anticipate the upcoming throw and be moving into it as the catch is made.

    Fun Variations To The Basic Drill

    • Use a stopwatch to time one, or more rounds. Can compete groups against groups, or a group against itself based on time.

    • Keep a running chart of the recorded times to measure progress over the course of the season.

    Please Don't Run It Like This

    This situation was conveyed to me by a 12 year old D'backs camper.

    Working through station rotations, his group had just come to the hitting station I was conducting. About half way through the 20 minute segment, this camper said he didn't feel well, and asked to set out.

    I had him sit in the shade and get some water. When the rotation finished, his group moved on to the next station.

    When asked how he was doing, he said he hurt all over. He then proceded to explain that the night before, at his team's workout, they had been doing what he called, throwing the diamond.

    It was a box drill, on the infield, using the bases for the corners. The starting goal for the drill was to record 150 complete, error free rounds in succession. I had to ask, just how long did that take? The answer, one hour and 15 minutes.

    1. What could the coach in this situation possibly have been thinking?

    2. What conclusions will the players come to as they look back on it?

    3. How long will it be before many of them decide that baseball really isn't fun, and look to go in another direction?

    4. Those questions, plus the obvious, what does that potentially do to a young players arm?
    Cal Ripken Jr, 21 year MLB career, all with the Baltimore Orioles, owner of baseball's consecutive games played streak at 2632 games

    Whether Your Name Is Gehrig, Ripken, DiMaggio or Robinson, or that of some youngster who picks up his bat or puts on his glove, you are challenged by the game of baseball to do your very best day in and day out. That's All I've Ever Tried To Do(Cal Ripken Jr.)

    return from infield box drill to the ole

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