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Pitcher Fielding Help

Axe

Jul 7, 2011
449
18
Atlanta
DD3 is a 14U pitcher. She is a very strong fielder who tries to help out by making plays while she's in the circle. Occasionally, this gets her in trouble as she may tip a ball while trying to make a play that our SS or 2B might have gotten easily.

Does anyone tips for teaching aggressive pitchers what to field and what not to? Or do we live with the occasional infield hit as the price for the really good plays that she makes?
 
May 17, 2012
1,976
63
A good rule of thumb for ground balls is to defend the circle area. Anything outside of that *should* be routine for the 2B or SS. If your 2B has a little less range you might be more aggressive to that side as any GB will be to the 2B's backhand.

What you don't want to do is take away that ball that is on the SS's glove side as that is an easy play for an average SS.

Know your teammates.
 
Last edited:
Oct 11, 2010
7,476
38
Chicago, IL
Interesting, have not put any thought into this.

DD is probably best fielder, in general this is probably true for most younger Teams.

Always taught pitchers to get anything they can.

This is going to give me something to think about today. :)

Runners on 1st and 2nd, I think I would want P to try to get the ball, no one on base maybe leave it go?
 

ez_softball

Life at the diamond...
Apr 14, 2017
141
28
I coach pitchers to field routine plays hit back to them and trust the fielders behind them for anything outside of that. A lot of coaches actually have a rule that pitchers only field the circle. I don't make the rule but stress that we need to trust the fielding behind us. I want to avoid pitchers from knocking the ball off the path of her middle infielders and turning routine MI plays into squibs knocked into the outfield grass.
 
Mar 28, 2016
153
18
Interesting, have not put any thought into this.

DD is probably best fielder, in general this is probably true for most younger Teams.

Always taught pitchers to get anything they can.

This is going to give me something to think about today. :)

Runners on 1st and 2nd, I think I would want P to try to get the ball, no one on base maybe leave it go?
Often if the pitcher lets the ball to her right go through, it's an easy double play for most SS's.
 
Jul 24, 2013
19
1
Generally, if the pitcher has to do more than just extend her glove-side arm, let it go. On slower hit balls, the pitcher has to be more aggressive in fielding the ball. It takes a lot of grounders in practice to overcome the instinct of trying to field everything hit back towards the circle. It also takes a lot of grounders to learn which balls to field and learn which balls to let go through to SS or 2B. I don't know how many times I've seen pitchers go for grounders and then have the ball glance off her glove, making it impossible for SS or 2B to field the ball.
 
Jun 11, 2013
2,084
63
Go for everything. Maybe at a higher level the coach might change it up but there are more problems caused by players not being aggressive than the other way around. I good fielding pitcher turns a lot of singles into 1-3's
 
Nov 29, 2009
2,866
63
DD3 is a 14U pitcher. She is a very strong fielder who tries to help out by making plays while she's in the circle. Occasionally, this gets her in trouble as she may tip a ball while trying to make a play that our SS or 2B might have gotten easily.

Does anyone tips for teaching aggressive pitchers what to field and what not to? Or do we live with the occasional infield hit as the price for the really good plays that she makes?
Learning what to try and field and what to let go takes practice. What I will do with my pitchers is have them give me a full speed pitching motion without a ball. I will have the SS and 2nd on the field behind them. When the pitcher hits her release point I toss the ball and hit it back at them. The toss and hit back to them is pretty close to game speed. It'll take some practice on your end to get the timing right. Hit the ball back at them and to the sides varying the speed of the ball and placement. Let them see what SS and 2nd can get to. She'll be able to get comfortable with the range of her MI's. Work bunts, hotshots, slow rollers and balls her MI's should be able to get to. Don't hit every pitch. Just like in a game. Make sure she is being a pitcher first, then a fielder.

I like to tell them the circle is theirs. But some girls are more athletic than others. So each pitcher must learn their own limits.
 
Mar 1, 2015
131
0
Just tell your DD to watch Barnhill and do the exact opposite. :D ....I kid, I kid...I mean, how are you the national player of the year and most 10u pitchers can field the P position better?


But seriously, unless she's throwing the ball into right field all the time, or running into infielders on a regular basis, she needs to use her instincts. And to help with the deflected balls or the awkward plays the infielders need to communicate and be very very very vocal. Slow roller to 2B, but pitcher wants to cut it off? 2B needs to call her off loudly. When I played, the pitcher was last in the line of authority. If anyone called them off, the pitcher backed off.

Talk, talk, talk, talk. Loudly and with authority. That's what the infield needs to do.
 

JAD

Feb 20, 2012
8,231
38
Georgia
I have always encouraged my DD to field everything she can with reasonable effort. I don't want her diving for balls, but I want her to be aggressive.
 
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