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THE CASE for the LEFT HAND CATCHER in SOFTBALL.

May 6, 2015
2,255
113
DD has played with two exceptional left-handed catchers in her travel career; both are D-1 commits. I totally agree with the "advantage" of the pick 1st vs throw to 3rd. With that being said, the left-handed catcher is absolutely at a disadvantage with receiving a throw on a play at the plate. Lefty has to cross their body to apply the tag whereas a righty has a quicker, natural swipe tag. I have seen runners coming up safe many times on close plays because it takes that extra split second to get the tag around, especially on throws from RF.
should a lefty catcher set up different. DD is a RH C, taught to set up on tag plays to plate with left heel on front left corner of plate (so as not to block, hopefully throw is on target to her left hand (glove side) to move in direction of throw upon receipt. should a left put their right heel on that front left corner (at least for throws from RF or CF) or maybe a couple of feet up the line, in order to rotate backward (again, in direction of throw) with the ball in mitt? throws from LF or left side of infield more problematic hmmmm?
 
May 29, 2019
257
43
should a left put their right heel on that front left corner (at least for throws from RF or CF) or maybe a couple of feet up the line, in order to rotate backward (again, in direction of throw) with the ball in mitt?
Then you are moving away from the play, tagging away from the play, taking your eyes off of the play....
 
Sep 13, 2020
62
18
I have a lefty catcher as well. There are two disadvantages that we've seen ... sweep tag at the plate and the impact of a tailing ball on the throw to 2nd when she doesn't stay on top of the ball. Many will say the last can be an issue for either hand.

No reason to discourage a lefty from making that a primary position though there are still some coaches who don't like to play a lefty behind the plate..
 
Oct 17, 2014
9
3
Maryland
Then you are moving away from the play, tagging away from the play, taking your eyes off of the play....
All catchers should make that tag with the ball in hand, hand in mitt to assure that the ball is not jarred loose.
The tag is made with one or both knees on the ground in a blocking position; so essentially runners tag themselves out. If the runner tries to avoid the tag by going to either side, the catcher moves the tag toward the runner but not necessarily to the runner. There is no need to reachout or chase, the runner must return to the plate where the tag awaits!
The “slap” tag (glove only) should only be considered when the plate, not the runner, is out of reach, usually due to a poor throw. In this situation, the LH catcher can be at a slight disadvantage when reaching to the third base side.
 
Mar 29, 2015
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8
Michelle Venturella pops to mind as a lefty who had great success as a collegiate all-American and Olympic catcher...
 
May 23, 2015
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The biggest issue with left handed catchers is plays at the plate. Anything tailing up the line is across their body or backhanded. As mentioned before every throw to a base from a catcher tails away from the runner. With practice that can be compensated for
 

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