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crashing the 1b

May 22, 2008
351
0
NW Pennsylvania
We have been keeping the 1b home during bunt situations, & now are ready to try some more bunt coverages. How do you run the rest of your infield when the 1b is crashing bunts, as well as 3b?- I understand the scenario changes depending on where the baserunners are, score & what point the game is in. lets assume theres a runner on 2b or 3b in a close game near the end.
 
Mar 2, 2009
311
0
Suffolk, VA
We have been keeping the 1b home during bunt situations, & now are ready to try some more bunt coverages. How do you run the rest of your infield when the 1b is crashing bunts, as well as 3b?- I understand the scenario changes depending on where the baserunners are, score & what point the game is in. lets assume theres a runner on 2b or 3b in a close game near the end.

3B ALONE, we still crash both corners, BUT if 2nd or 2nd & 3rd......MY Preference depends situation and on-deck batter. THEN on your pitchers accuracy and athletisism. IF your pitcher can hit her location and field one side to the line, I prefer to pitch to the side of the plate I want my corner infielder to field the ball. Many good coaches play both corners and no coverage at 2B, with SS covering 3B. I see this often and these coaches are successful, but for me, I prefer NOT to race my SS. I prefer a 1 back defense where one corner stays back to the base (runners at 2nd or 2nd & 3rd) and 3B would retreat on the pitch to cover 3B. Rationale = pitch is to 1B side of plate to get a bunt to 1B player, makes it easier to make a throw to 3B from 1B coming across, and if we wind up going one, we still have ALL bases covered. threat of a bunt to 3B line is minimized by pitching to 1B side and my pitcher's ability to cover 3B line. Opposite [pitch location and defense rotaton if we want 3B up and 1B back.
** If you do NOT have an athletic pitcher and/or she is not consistant hitting location, I would agree having both corners crash and both middles cover corner bases, THOUGH I STRONGLY am cautious about an OUTFIELDER coming down to cover a base (CF coveringf 2B) as you lose your second layer of defense and I HAVE see throws to a CF covering 2B go past her and all runners score.:cool:
 
R

RayR

Guest
3B ALONE, we still crash both corners, BUT if 2nd or 2nd & 3rd......MY Preference depends situation and on-deck batter. THEN on your pitchers accuracy and athletisism. IF your pitcher can hit her location and field one side to the line, I prefer to pitch to the side of the plate I want my corner infielder to field the ball. Many good coaches play both corners and no coverage at 2B, with SS covering 3B. I see this often and these coaches are successful, but for me, I prefer NOT to race my SS. I prefer a 1 back defense where one corner stays back to the base (runners at 2nd or 2nd & 3rd) and 3B would retreat on the pitch to cover 3B. Rationale = pitch is to 1B side of plate to get a bunt to 1B player, makes it easier to make a throw to 3B from 1B coming across, and if we wind up going one, we still have ALL bases covered. threat of a bunt to 3B line is minimized by pitching to 1B side and my pitcher's ability to cover 3B line. Opposite [pitch location and defense rotaton if we want 3B up and 1B back.
** If you do NOT have an athletic pitcher and/or she is not consistant hitting location, I would agree having both corners crash and both middles cover corner bases, THOUGH I STRONGLY am cautious about an OUTFIELDER coming down to cover a base (CF coveringf 2B) as you lose your second layer of defense and I HAVE see throws to a CF covering 2B go past her and all runners score.:cool:

Why would you ever throw to 2B on a bunt with R2 or R1/R2? If the bunt is hard enough the closer throw is to 3B. We have made many plays at 3B successfully with the SS covering the bag.
 
Mar 2, 2009
311
0
Suffolk, VA
why cover 2B? Have to have the base covered, otherwise Batter-runner gets a free base and runners that hit 2B get a much bigger turn toward 3B then they should. All bases have to be covered... also, as an example, during the college softball regionals, there were a couple instances that Michele Smith mentioned the slower SS having to cover 3rd was giving the steal or play up (when there were fast runners at 2B).
*** We've also ran situations where SS covered 3B and successfully, but it depends on the baserunners, and pitcher ability to field, and often successfully. We've also run situations w/ SS covering and had slaps go thru, also had SS not able to get over to 3B in time on fake hit and fake slaps freezing the SS temp, so similar to any defense, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't for a variety of reasons..... so you go with the defense that best provides you an opportunity to get the outs you think the situation dictates.
 
R

RayR

Guest
At the HS level and below - if the CF and covers 2B that is enough to keep the batter/runner from advancing.

I agree with a slapper up I would keep the SS and be very aggressive. I thought we were talking about sac bunts.

Of course, the ability of my P dictates the defense. I have not had a very athletic pitcher the last few years so both corners crashing on bunts is pretty mandatory.

Back to the OP - if you are going to start crashing your 1B - your 2B needs to be your second best 1B on the field with a strong arm. Size would help as well.

Here is our basic bunt D with R1

Corners crash
2B covers 1B - RF backs in line with throw
SS covers 2B - CF backs up in line with possible throw to 2B then moves to back up in line with throw from 1B
If 3B fields ball - C covers 3B with LF backing up - someone 3B/1B/P covers plate just in case
If anyone else fields bunt - 3B covers 3B

If ball gets thrown to 1B - 2B will then throw behind runner at 2B.

Do this one time and runners heading into 2B are less aggressive about taking 3B.
 
Jan 19, 2009
22
0
I've been seeing a few teams bring their second baseman up even with the pitcher and keep their first baseman back a little behind the bag. I've seen this mostly against slappers, but a little against bunts.

I have been thinking about doing this- it keeps a quicker fielder up, and the taller glove at first with someone who is more used to taking the throws.

Has anyone else seen this? What do you think?
 
Mar 2, 2009
311
0
Suffolk, VA
I've seen this also, but I would strongly suggest you know the batter. IF she is a LH hitter and slapper, and you pitch INSIDE and she turns on one, your 2B BETTER have the reflexes of a 3B, otherwise she can take a bullet to the face if the LH batter hits away!
 
Mar 2, 2009
311
0
Suffolk, VA
RH Batter - situation dictates, but I've seen 2B play tight-pitcher's distance also and couldn't argue with that. I've ACTUALY had a coach call a 2B up in this same position while I was calling pitches. Ticked me off, cause situation was 2 out and a good RH hitter up and I wanted a weak grounder to 2B and I wanted 2B Deep in the hole. Pitch a low-away to RH and get that ground ball to 2B to end the inning. 1B would NOT have made that play and 2B playing up wouldn't have had the reaction time.
But the situation here is a Bunt/Slap situation. (Good slappers can drag bunt, so ALL at-bats are good situations for them.) Sac bunt situations would depend if I trusted ny 1B to play bunt more then I trust my 2B making play and throw. How many outs and WHERE is lead runner going if the situation allows and can my 2B make that play if ball comes to her hard?
So situation and pitch being called to get the result we are trying for would dictate whether I would be ok with 2B playing up.
*** I PERSONALLY never run that play cause I want the hole covered and 1B on the line and 2B playing tight leaves a HUGE hole on the right side to 2B and NO REACTION time for 2B. Guess I'm more comfortable with corners playing line and middles playing middles. Middles can move laterally to line (and 1B) and middle better (generally more range ) and have more reaction time for balls NOT bunted and corners with less range (NOT ALWAYS) CANNOT play balls hit to holes in middle of field.
** That said I'd love to hear the rationale for playing 2B up. Could be good and I could learn something.
 
Jan 15, 2009
585
0
** That said I'd love to hear the rationale for playing 2B up. Could be good and I could learn something.
Depends on the athletes. Is F3 slow and left handed? Is that who you want fielding a ball and then having to make a full turn to make the throw? Is F4 lightning quick but 4'8" with a weak arm? Is that the target you want standing on 1B? Is she going to be able to throw to 3B after the putout at first, to get the runner trying to advance the extra base?

I'm in general agreement with corners crashing being the better defensive set. I want a quick athletic F3 who has a better opportunity to tag the runner coming down the line, and I want F4 deep enough to field grounders on that side in case of a slap or a hit to that side.
 

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