Feel like your squad's glovework on ground balls could improve? Here are some tips to make sure your infielders are in a position to make the best defensive play possible.
We firmly believe that good fielders go and get the ball VERY aggressively. There are many philosophies out there that tell you to field the ground ball by making a rounded 'L' to your belly as you field the ball.
However, we think that as you field the ball, your glove should be going to it (attacking it) instead of moving away from it in the 'L' theory.
Avoiding the Hop
So, our gloves literally go out to the ball and up. This allows us to get rid of short hops that eat you up and force your hands to go to the ball, not letting the ball play you.
At the beginning of the year we exaggerate this to the point that our hands go above our heads—as the kids understand how important it is to go to the ball, we don't require all of that exaggeration.
It's All in the Presentation
We make sure that our glove is ALWAYS presented from the beginning of the approach. Presentation requires the wrist to be broken so that the back of the glove is parallel with your legs, instead of the wrist being straight and having the back of the glove parallel with the ground.
This eliminates the ball that rolls up the arm or off the heel or front of the glove causing the ball to go elsewhere.
We focus on trying to get the ball to hit the palm of the glove, giving way to our 'alligator jaw' formation. This is what we call our throwing hand and glove together: because they look like alligator jaws.
Follow these tips and you'll be sure your fielders get to most of the balls they encounter.
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