As a coach, you should be interested in fun baseball drills for your team during practice. It is important, especially at a young age, to have your players go through repetitive drills to develop good mechanics and skills. But, keeping your players interested and having fun at the same time is also important. Below are fun and informative little league baseball drills that a player will learn and carry on with him throughout his playing career.
Over the years, this drill has become a classic and has come to have several variations of play. One way to play is to line up about 5 to 7 players in a line facing a batter about 20 feet away. One of the players will start by tossing the ball to the hitter, and he must hit a solid ground ball or line drive to the group of fielders. If a player bobbles the ball when it is hit at him, then that player is out. The last fielder standing will be the winner and get to be the hitter next. The point is for the hitter to hit the ball hard. That, coupled with the short distance, will teach the fielders to react quickly to a ball hit off the bat.
Divide your team into even groups of 4 to 6 depending on the size of the field and your players’ throwing capabilities. Have each group line up parallel to each other and spread them across the outfield. Have each group start with the ball on the same end. Make it a competition on what group can relay the ball to the last player and back the fastest. This drill will simulate the motions that fielders go through when relaying the ball from the outfield to a base. Players will learn how to line themselves up for a throw and develop quick hands.
This game brings back great memories for me when I played ball in high school. We would play this every day before we started stretching and throwing for practice or games. Gather your team around in a circle and have them use two baseballs. Have two players start with a ball in their glove and have them “flip” the ball to another player using only their glove. Players cannot use throwing hands and cannot actually catch the ball in their glove. If a player messes up a “flip” then that player is out. The last man standing wins.
This drill does not do much on improving a player’s skills, but it does something better than that. It creates some friendly competition and great team camaraderie. If done right, the game will be intense and it will psyche up and unite your players before they go to work on the field.
Divide your squad into 2 teams. Or, to make things interesting, choose 2 team captains and have them pick teams. The object is to see which team can lay down the best bunt. Place cones or mark the areas on the infield that would be considered a good bunt. The team with the player that bunts his or her ball closest to the cone or marker wins. Most players can lay down a decent bunt in a non-pressure situation like batting practice. However, this exercise puts pressure on the batter to perform for his team. He also has to mentally block out the other team rooting against him. These circumstances are supposed to replicate a game-like situation and prepare the players to be clutch in pressure situations.
Shallow Pop Flies
This last drill requires an entire field and for you to be experienced with a fungo bat. As the coach, you will hit shallow pop flies in between the infield and outfield. They must be hit in the grey area where either player going for the ball has a chance at catching it. Players find out what kind of range they are capable of and also work on communication between the infield and outfield. Running in on a fly ball is much easier than running backwards, which is why an outfielder has precedence over an infielder and can always call off an infielder. Make sure your players understand this concept and how important communication is on every play. This will result in more balls caught and less collisions between outfielders and infielders.
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