Two other thing about aggressive base running: picking up coaches signs properly and practicing sliding drills. When I coached 10u, many of the girls were tentative to slide into a base. For example, we would do lots of drills trying to bunt a runner from 1B to 3B and many times that requires a slide into 3B. In addition, we always would spend lots of time with the defense set-up and put runners on base during different counts and hit balls to all areas of the infield and outfield, simulating real game situations. There is is no easy fix other than lots of repetition and doing the drills properly, over and over again. When I coached, there never seemed to be enough time to go over all of the skills needed to play the game at a high-level, you just do the best you can...it also helps to draft players who already are aggressive players
Another thing you need to stress to runners -- yes they need to "read" the plays in front of them, but they should be reading ONLY to take another base (for the most part). They should not be reading to STOP from taking the next base, it is on the coach's waving them forward if they are out at the next base.
Two other thing about aggressive base running: picking up coaches signs properly and practicing sliding drills.
"Practice Sliding"!!! So True!!!!
Confidence in sliding, turns into confidence running bases aggressively.
Practicing with a 1B and 3B coach telling them what to do, does not equate into aggressive base running... That is actually the opposite, you are just coaching them to "Do what I tell you to do..." True aggression is player initiated. They see an opening, and take it! Rather than coach it, it's more encouragement. When they are successful, give them high praise. When they make the wrong decision, don't come down on them, but talk through what went wrong, or why that might not have been the best decision... Teams will occasionally make the perfect throw, and a perfect catch, and perfect tag, but many times they don't, and an extra base can be taken.
Also, coach situational awareness... If you are down by 3 in last inning... your lead off batter stretching a double into a triple is not worth the risk... when in the first inning, and it's 0-0 with 2 outs... a runner standing on 3rd with two outs, is more likely to score, than standing on 2nd.
Last edited by wheresmycar; 07-18-2018 at 01:42 PM.
I have heard of a drill where the girl hits and runs the bases until the defense gets her out. It helps them be aggressive and also teaches them their limits. Not sure how well it would work with 10U though.
one thing I have always told DD is that if you see the numbers of the OF, you keep running, thinking the base beyond the next one (ie if you round first and see OF numbers, you are trying for 3rd, if you round 2nd and see OF numbers (of course not possible for RF), think home. she is now 1st year 12U, this may change a little as arms get stronger, but at younger levels, been pretty effective.
Also, always take loudly and for all to hear take blame if they are over agressive, so they know you have their back. Until it is a chronic problem, then privately talk with player(s) to work with them on dialing it down, but usually easier to get them to be a little more cautious than to teach them to be aggressive.
During a game or scrimmage have the players coach 1st & 3rd. Base running requires much more savvy than skill and is extremely situational IMHO. By having them evaluate developing plays while not an active part of it their "6th sense" of when to run or not will develop more quickly.
As other have said, teach them that you expect each of them to be thrown out at least once a season.