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Baseball vs. Softball

Oct 26, 2019
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@Rolling Hard I grew up catching in baseball also and now only catch softball for my DD. Catching for her that has been my observation. I am a picking machine sitting on that bucket haha.
 
May 29, 2015
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DD attended a Catching Camp with Jay Weaver before she moved over to pitching full-time. From what I remember, the part about catching close to the body had to do with throwing hand position with runners on base. They taught to keep your throwing hand low behind the shin with the bases empty, but there was a different posture with runners on.

They advised to keep the throwing hand around the chest, but just behind the glove to prevent getting hit with a foul ball, hence the move to bring the glove a little closer to the body. This was the optimum position for throwing out runners.

I remember sharing this with DD's regular catching coach at the time, who thought it was a bad idea for the reason RADcatcher pointed out: the receiving hand should be extended to stop the ball before it left the strike zone. DD didn't like her hand exposed, so she always kept it behind her leg, even with runners on.
Not a popular opinion, but I’m not a fan of “hiding” the throwing hand to protect it.

Wherever the throwing hand starts, everything should be in simultaneous motion and working to the same point. The glove and throwing hand should both be coming up to the throwing position and meeting as part of the transition (think of relay runners handing off the baton). For me that happened at about my breast, but that can vary by player. All one continuous motion in conjunction with any other body movement. The throwing hand should never waste time reaching for the ball.
 
Jul 14, 2018
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Not a popular opinion, but I’m not a fan of “hiding” the throwing hand to protect it.

Wherever the throwing hand starts, everything should be in simultaneous motion and working to the same point. The glove and throwing hand should both be coming up to the throwing position and meeting as part of the transition (think of relay runners handing off the baton). For me that happened at about my breast, but that can vary by player. All one continuous motion in conjunction with any other body movement. The throwing hand should never waste time reaching for the ball.
I probably didn't explain that very well as I think you're advocating the same thing. By keeping the throwing hand up at chest level, there is no time wasted reaching for the ball. Hands are together immediately and in good throwing position. 'Hiding' the throwing hand just meant keeping it behind the glove to prevent injury.

Some days I miss DD being the catcher. But mostly not :LOL:
 
May 29, 2015
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The “hiding“ comment wasn’t directly aimed at your comment @Rick M . I don’t think “behind the glove” is necessarily hiding it since the arm is still exposed. I’m thinking more of the “behind the back/leg” where you have to make a separate move to free the hand first. That is fine for newer/novice catchers to feel safe and build confidence, but when you start getting more competitive you want “fast access” to the ball.

I always felt awkward with my hand behind the glove. I can see a fast slide move that would work, it just didn’t for me. Ultimately it is really whatever keeps the catcher comfortable and provides the fastest fluid transfer. If it works for you ... ;)
 

RADcatcher

Possibilities & Opportunities!
Dec 13, 2019
351
43
Add...
Not necessary to have two hands to the ball when framing.
That said...
In the discussion about
Catchers dirt pitch recovery there were posters on the website who some agree/disagree with using our glove to field the ball on dirt pitches.
Agree with fielding dirt pitches!
Agree with two hands to the ball when needing to make a play ( good pitches, wild or dirt) and transition quickly in front of our body to throw runners out. Or receive a throw coming in to make a tag.
When necessary at times may only have a glove to the ball because of its proximity having to extend arm to reach. (AKA a wild throw away from the body).

Catchers are defensive players behind the plate with the added pleasure of framing and throwing runners out!

The pitch trajectory in softball dirt pitches tend to stay low. Skim the dirt.
Making it easier to field these pitches!
Imo the majority of softball pitches in the dirt catcher can field, transition quickly in front of body to
THROW RUNNERS OUT!
 
Last edited:
Nov 18, 2015
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With the hand behind the glove, the hand stays in the "shadow" of the glove - glove goes forward to receive, hand stays behind by chest protector. Hand behind shin guard, much harder to get hand around to front of body and behind glove to drop and block.

I've seen SOOOO many pictures of catchers (including D1 and probably MLB catchers) where their throwing hand is flying out exposed right before they catch the ball. It's like hitting - I'd bet they think they're keeping their hand protected the whole time, but the camera is saying otherwise.

Lastly - if you're thinking "what about pitches that require you to reach up/down/sideways - how do you stay in the shadow of the glove?" - I'm in agreement with the thought that if it's that far out of the strike zone, the batter's not going to be swinging anyway.
 
Sep 29, 2010
1,084
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Knoxville, TN
With the hand behind the glove, the hand stays in the "shadow" of the glove - glove goes forward to receive, hand stays behind by chest protector. Hand behind shin guard, much harder to get hand around to front of body and behind glove to drop and block.

I've seen SOOOO many pictures of catchers (including D1 and probably MLB catchers) where their throwing hand is flying out exposed right before they catch the ball. It's like hitting - I'd bet they think they're keeping their hand protected the whole time, but the camera is saying otherwise.

Lastly - if you're thinking "what about pitches that require you to reach up/down/sideways - how do you stay in the shadow of the glove?" - I'm in agreement with the thought that if it's that far out of the strike zone, the batter's not going to be swinging anyway.
Just playing devil’s advocate. How many catchers do you know that have sustained a hand injury from a foul tip? DD hasn’t had one since 10U. Assuming a ball hits a fist during both techniques, is it better to get hit with fist above the thigh where it can give, or against the chest where the fist would be crushed between ball and chest?

Full disclosure, I’m not a hand against the chest guy. I don’t have an issue with catchers who do it, I just don’t buy that it’s any safer, or faster than beside the thigh.
 

RADcatcher

Possibilities & Opportunities!
Dec 13, 2019
351
43
Possibly, no matter what, throwing hand is just inherently in a more dangerous position due to catching because of how many times the ball comes to the catcher. Obvious with bat directly in front as well.

In other words how many finger zingers would there be to a fielder who received the ball just as much?
 
May 29, 2015
1,339
113
Just playing devil’s advocate. How many catchers do you know that have sustained a hand injury from a foul tip? DD hasn’t had one since 10U. Assuming a ball hits a fist during both techniques, is it better to get hit with fist above the thigh where it can give, or against the chest where the fist would be crushed between ball and chest?

Full disclosure, I’m not a hand against the chest guy. I don’t have an issue with catchers who do it, I just don’t buy that it’s any safer, or faster than beside the thigh.
Again ... just based on my personal preference, but ^that.

I don’t like the hand against the chest for two reasons: as @Jdaddy said it places an additional resistance to an impact and (two) typically a kid is going to place it there flat which makes it a bigger target.

I also don’t like “in the shadow” because it still places the hand in the line of fire.

I typically had mine resting on my inner thigh as that felt “natural” to me. Yes, still against something, but it was far enough out of the direct line of fire that it provided extra time to react and move it.

Place the hand near the mitt and kids tend to get grabby and start sticking it out there unexposed.
 

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