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Where to put the girl who is not quite ready?

Dec 16, 2008
7
0
A little background I coach a high school team from a smaller school. We play in one of the best conferences in Illinois and have been really competitive in the past. Our pitchers throw from 56 - 59 MPH, with changes and drops.

The problem is that I can juggle the defensive lineup a number of ways but I still feel like there is always one position where I come up short, meaning that one position has to be played by someone who is not ready to start varsity.

If you were coaching at what position would you most feel that you could let a weaker player play?
 

Ken Krause

Administrator
Admin
May 7, 2008
3,470
48
Mundelein, IL
Some of it depends on how you run your defense but I'll hazard a couple of suggestions. If she is decent at ground balls but has a weak arm you can put her at second base. Even if she bobbles the ball she has time to throw.

Of course, if the hitters in your conference can't get around on your pitchers she might see a lot of action. If she has good hands and isn't really short, you can try her at first base.

My other option would be left field, again assuming most hitters can't get around on your pitchers. If you go that way, hit her a ton of fly balls so she learns how to go after them.
 
May 22, 2008
351
0
NW Pennsylvania
If your pitchers can dominate enough that you feel very few girls are going to pull the ball hard, I might try her at a short 3b (at least take away the bunt) If they rip the 3b line, best case its a double, worst case your girl is gonna get hurt.. otherwise i would have her on second- I agree with Ken there.
 

Amy in AZ.

Super Moderator
May 7, 2008
8,508
48
Tucson
It has been my experience that no matter where you put her, the ball is going to find her.

I guess I would put her in RF and try to teach her to catch fly balls. If she can't catch fly balls, I tell the CF, to catch everything that she can get to. It looks pretty bad for the RF, but she needs to put in some time to get better.

Where are you putting her in the batting line up?
 

sluggers

Super Moderator
Staff member
May 26, 2008
5,921
83
Dallas, Texas
RF is a funny position in HS. A good player in RF can get some extra put outs at 1B if she plays in and has the speed to get back on long balls. So, I would put her in LF.

At 56-59 MPH in high school, few batters will be able to pull the ball. Of course, the batters who can pull the ball are going to kill it, so the LF's main job will be "fetch and throw" rather than "catch and throw".

If you play in northern Illinois, your main problem will be getting the girl to handle fly balls in the wind. Get her out there and hit her 100s of fly balls. It isn't hard to teach someone to catch routine fly balls.
 

Amy in AZ.

Super Moderator
May 7, 2008
8,508
48
Tucson
I use the Jugs pitching machine to throw pop flies to the OFs. Any mom or dad can do that, while you coach the players.
 
May 13, 2008
832
16
IMO, it depends on what the player's strengths/weaknesses are. Without knowing her strengths and weaknesses I'd have to agree with Sluggers advice at this point.

What really prompted me to reply, however, is the suggestion that you'd 'hide' the weakest player at 2nd. :confused: I understand the argument that at 2B you don't need the strongest arm, but there is so much more to the position. The second baseman has more responsibilities in the infield than SS in regards to bunts, slap D, steals, cutoff responsibility, etc. Why in the world would you voluntarily put your weakest player in the middle of your defense?
 

Ken Krause

Administrator
Admin
May 7, 2008
3,470
48
Mundelein, IL
It all depends on what makes her your weakest player, doesn't it? If she's not physically strong but is smart, second base will work for her. If she has good athletic ability but isn't with it mentally, it's probably not the position for her.
 
Dec 16, 2008
7
0
Glad to hear all the talk, I have been away a few days. You guys confirm what 3 positions I am looking at using, 2B, LF, and 1B. I have one girl who could play 1b or I put another girl at either 2b or LF, so it really isn't one girl I am choosing from. I am just trying to feel the last spot. It is really hard to put her at 2B because of all the things that were mentioned above in softball.

Why do some feel 2b over 1b?
 

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