Baseball Pregame Drills

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Staying Focused On The Game
During Baseball Pregame Drills

Baseball Pregame Drills should be aimed totally toward getting the entire team relaxed and mentally focused and ready to play the baseball game.

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Keep in mind those hours of practice in the hot sun has prepared us well on the baseball playing fundamentals and how to play our particular positions now it is Show And Tell Time.

Baseball pregame drills is not to teach the game but to focus mentally on playing sharp as a carpet tack and getting ready to score runs against an opponent.

It is time for Batter Up----Let's Play Ball and just like a Gillette blade our purpose in our baseball pregame drills is to get the team "Looking Sharp," "Feeling Sharp" and "Being Sharp."

Let us never forget the game of baseball is a game of physical skills and mental smarts. More teams end up on the short end of a score at the end of the game, all because of mental mistakes rather than the physical error miscues.

During the early spring practices and the start of the season, we have deligently practiced and developed the playing skills. This is the physical part of the game and our season long practicing to develop our physical skills.

The head coach and all the assistant coaches have screamed, yelled, cajoled, and even begged, Come on boys, stay awake, keep your head in the game. This is the mental part of the game.

The time to determine which of the players is capable of carrying the load from the physical and mental playing ability is not during the baseball drills of pregame.

Now it's game time and our entire focus needs to be to warm up, loosen up with good infield warmup and some hitting so loosen up and bring on the boys from across town. Those fellers in the funny colored uniforms and a silly looking logo on their caps.

Baseball drills pregame must start the night before and the early morning of game day. The night before you should get into the sack early and get your rest. During the day of the game do not expose your eyes unprotected to the glaring sunlight or heavy winds.

Bright sunlight and wind blowing into your eyes will do considerable harm in your ability to have a keen and focused batting eye at the plate.

Hitters please never forget this item of wisdom about the eyes having concentrated keen focus look of that ball onto the bat is extra special important for hitting.

Lend me your ear and listen up, for here is the heart and soul of our baseball drills pregame.

The players will dress in the locker room as a team, they will travel to the playing diamond as a team, but once on that diamond, the team is divided into groups to loosen up those bodies by slow warmup exercise routine to prepare for the game.

The basic groups for baseball drills pregame to stretch and loosen taunt but conditioned muscles will divide the team as follows:

  • Outfielders in a group
  • Infielders in a group
  • Pitchers and Catchers in a group
  • Little Bubba and his group chasing down the errant balls going foul and leaving the ball park into the parking lot.

Let me quiet some of those snickers about Little Bubba and his group.

Remember, always and forever, each of those boys out there on the diamond in those sharp looking baseball team uniform is someones hero. There has always been, and always will, be a solid contingent of smaller kids in the eight to twelve year age group at the ball fields come game time. They come to see their heroes in action and hope to be recognised as part of the future team.

These are the kids waiting there turn, learning the game, to one day earn their uniform. If you or anyone were ever guilty of discouraging or not lettimg them be part of the action you would be wrong.

Batting Practice is the most important part of our baseball drills pregame for we want our players relaxed and focused with the eye/hand coordination concentration.

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The designated starting players already know when they get to the field and start their baseball drills pregame if they will be starting the game.

So these are the gents, along with a few more designated probable players, who might see action will take batting practice during the baseball drills pregame.

The coach lets all his team get warmed up by keeping a keen eye on everything going on out there on the diamond before telling his batting practice pitcher to toe the mound.

The team out on the field in groups warming up and doing their thing while the second team infielders take up their positions on the infield.

There is also an ole practice known as the pecking order of things. This pecking order of things is pretty much standard for all sport activities.

What this pecking order thing will do is allow the first string or starters to take a breather, waiting their turn at the plate during this baseball drill of pregame batting practice.

Note I am using the term "batting practice" for this is the universal usage for this pregame baseball drill as opposed to my always referring to lessons on hitting as being the more true art form.

Almost invariably, a game of pepper, with the hitters waiting their turn at the plate, will spontaneously start up and continue until one of the hitters gets like home run Harry and sends one zooming by the coach.

Well! This game of pepper is a good thing until it involves a near catastrophe as the hot hit baseball blasts past coach.

When the tirade from the coach about the game of pepper fiasco calms, the boys loose a little interest, and their attention might drift toward some of the pretty blonde and tanned soft ankle fans.

There is a distraction upon distraction with which a coach must contend.

Meanwhile, the starting first stringers play pepper further down the foul line and wait their batting practice turn. Routinely batting practice rotates in the lineup batting order and reinforces the concept of a batting order strategy for the order of attack.

The second and third team players taking up their positions on defense during batting practice have a ball. These guys are relaxed making plays look easy showing the coach they can get the job done.

A team's success to win the game is tied to the team players action this day and this game having the ability to hit.

Coaching baseball at all levels even baseball drills to include little league drills should be focused and managed so all players are prepared for the game and mentally focused.

Coming to the ball park with a focused, ready to go attitude and anxious to lay some good wood to the baseball can be squashed in a heart beat.

Allowing someone on the mound to pitch batting practice, that is as wild as a March hare, destroying all hope of hitters being focused mentally for hitting.

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A coach needs to be totally aware that the "Batting practice pitchers must be one of the boys with very good to superb strike zone pitching control."

Often times an assistant coach who was a terrific baseball player during his playing days will do the batting practice pitching. This will also allow the pitching coach throwing batting practice to closely observe the hitting mechanics of each batter.

The Outfielders:

They do some easy going warm up exercises for the leg muscles and to loosen and limbering up that throwing wing.

One of the assistant coaches or maybe one of the pitchers not scheduled to see action this game will grab a fungo bat and join the outfielders.

The outfielders need to get acclimated to the lay of the outfield turf, perimeter fencing, and the angle of the sun plus the wind conditions here at game time. The baseball drills pregame is the time to do some mental note taking of the playing conditions.

The fungo hitter takes that long slender fungo bat and starts hitting lazy pop flys to the outfielders. To ensure the boys get a good feel for the wind strength and direction, the fungo hitter starts to really put the pop to the bat.

The fungo bat by design, allows the hitter to drive the ball high and away, high and dry but we call it "bringing down the rain."

The Pitchers and Catchers:

This group takes their warm up and arm limbering up as serious as a heart attack. Badly sore and out of commission throwing arms for our pitchers is something for the other team, not our team.

The pitcher, which the coach has designated as the starting pitcher, sort of isolates himself from the crowd. His warm up exercise is done slowly and without a rush.

You will probably find the starting pitcher sitting alone in the dug out until such time as he needs to stir and get serious with his warm up pitches.

He will get plenty of work when he steps on that mound and starts his tosses for real.

The starting catcher normally will be paired with the starting pitcher during this final warming up session.. This pairing is done to serve two very good purposes. Remember our prime objective in our baseball drills pregame is to focus mentally on the game to be played.

The camaraderie and understanding between the pitcher and catcher needs to be real and positive. The catcher is the captain calling the type of pitch during the game so he needs a close feel as to which pitches his battery mate has the most confidence with.

This battery mate duo of pitcher and catcher provides the nuts and bolts for super good baseball teams. The catcher is the linch pin which makes the clock or team run smoothly and everything clicking like clock work.

Now for the second reason and I would bet you a pretty penny to the hole in a doughnut, very few fans have even given this reason a thought. Remember, alert focus and mentally prepared is always needed. The pitcher, by design, throws about every pitch with as much blazing speed as he can muster.

Listen well for here is the kicker.

"If a catcher is lazy and half throws the pitches back to the pitcher it will by human nature allow his pitcher to also get lazy and not stay focused."

Every catcher should be taught to fire that baseball back like a rifle shot to his pitcher hitting him right at the uniform letters and to the glove side of his body.

We can not afford to have our pitcher getting tired out by reaching, bending and moving to get that ball. Secondly, this zip on that throw keeps the pitcher really alert and focused on his job at hand.

One other small item of importance Coach "Piggy" Mitchell would never think of allowing his starting pitcher to warm up pitching an old used baseball. A brand new, right out of the box, was handed to his pitcher to do his baseball pregame drills with pitching warm ups.

Infielders:

Loosen up, warm up and keep your mind and attention away from the soft ankle fans gathering around the playing field.

When the infielders are limber, stretched and warmed up, it is time to get them on the infield for some infield practice. This is not practice to see who can field and throw but to simply get game legs under way.

A key ingredient for a successfull infield practice is to have one of the assistant coaches who has good and total bat control to do the infield baseball pregame drills practice.

Infield practice baseball pregame drills is not to drive the ball past the infielder but rather to allow him to get relaxed and focused getting in front of the ball, scooping the ball and firing to first.

Around the diamond baseball pregame drills some of the chatter will be to encourage the infielders to "scoop and shoot" atta boy John.

A coach or anyone hitting to the infielders trying to over hit and driving the ball with gusto causes the focus to be lost and voids the purpose of doing infield baseball pregame drills warm up. Remember we need our baseball pregame drills to stay on focus for the game not to defend bad hops.

At the start of the infield baseball pregame drills the starting outfielders are stationed at their respective positions. The coach doing the infield drill has each outfielder do his throwing thing. Left fielder is first and he takes the hit ball and places a peg on one hop to the third baseman.

The next hit the left fielder make his throw to second base again the throw should be a one hopper to second base. Third hit he throws that one hop right into the catchers lap at home plate. This throw in the baseball pregame drills he follows it home and on into the dugout for he is now ready and resting until the umpire "Yells! Batter Up Let's Play Ball.

This same scenario is done for the center fielder and the right fielder. Did you pay close attention as the coach in baseball pregame drills with the instruction to those out fielders were "make those throws coming to second ,third or home plate be one hop right into the bread basket of those teammates defending that base."

The infielders do their finishing warm up grabbing those grounders taking their hop and step picking up more momentum and pep as the PA sound system blares with "The Stars and Stripes Forever."

Baseball pregame drills are about complete as the coach gathers the warriors and goes over some of the unique ground rules which will effect today's game.

He, at this time, will briefly review some of the hand signals to be used and to tell the boys to keep their heads in the game and play smart solid baseball for the sake of Little Bubba.

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There is much more which could be added about baseball pregame drills but for starters, there it is. Let the team warm up and get ready helter skelter in their baseball pregame drills and they will be preparing to come up short on the final score.

Always emphasize hitting, scoring runs is what winning-baseball is about so baseball pregame drills is a must and why we take batting practice to focus on baseball pregame drills making winning happen for the team is ready.

If you are a winner do your baseball pregame drills with gusto practice, prepare and then play like one.

Batter Up----Let's Play Ball....

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