Fall Ball and Training Tips

Competitive club teams are gearing up for fall ball this season. Fall softball is typically very competitive as teams are coming off of a full summer season and playing at peak performance. Fall ball is a great way to keep your softball or baseball skills fresh to lead into the coming spring and summer seasons.

Whether your team is currently participating in fall softball or you are in off-season training, we have listed some drills and safety tips to keep your skills hot all year long.

Batting Practice

When the term batting practice is used, you likely think of a pitcher in a batting cage pitching to a batter. This style of batting practice is great to have you ready for live pitching but there are other variations of BP to help you bat like a pro.

Hit From a Tee

Even the top professionals know that tee work is imperative for improving as a hitter. Hitting from a tee allows you to work on your swing, ball contact, power, and finesse. When hitting off a tee be sure to simulate game action as much as possible and start off by hitting 30 to 50 balls, really focusing on the quality of your swings.

Flip Drill

You will need a partner for this one. The flip drill is meant to help the hitter spray the ball to all fields. For an inside pitch, the ball should be tossed at the hitter’s front hip, allowing him or her to pull the ball. For a middle pitch, the ball should be tossed from a 45-degree angle directly in front of the hitter. The ball should be driven back up the middle for middle pitches. For an outside pitch, the flipper will be a bit behind the hitter ~ doing so forces the hitter to take the ball to the opposite field.

Short Toss

Short toss drills bring a pitcher into play for a version of live pitching. Short toss should be done just before moving the “L” screen back in preparation for traditional batting practice. During this drill, the hitter needs to emphasize keeping their hands inside the ball and going with the pitch. By no means is this drill meant for the hitter to pull everything. Keep in mind that with each of these drills, the hitter should be establishing good habits.

Fielding Drills

Practice makes progress! Like batting practice, fielding practice is just as important to keep reaction times and reflexes sharp. These drills need a partner to throw or hit the ball, for the purpose of the drill we will call the extra person a coach.

Line Drive Drill

This drill is helpful for outfielders and infielders alike. The coach and player should start at 15-30 feet apart. The coach begins the drill by saying “go” and the player begins a sprint. While the player is sprinting the coach throws a ball mimicking a line drive in front of the player. The player catches the ball on the move, plants turns, and throws it back to the coach. To complete the drill, run the drill in both directions.

Ground Ball Drill

To work on fielding and fielding mechanics try this ground ball drill.

This drill is exactly like its name. It is as simple as someone hitting a ground ball to a fielder. The beauty of this drill is that it allows the player to anticipate anything whether it is a weak ground ball, a fast ground ball, one with a hop, or one that gets caught up in the dirt. This drill could be done 100 times and a fielder would not field the same ball twice.

Backhand Drill

To practice fielding the ball with a backhanded catch, try this backhand drill.

This drill begins with the fielder in a ready position. The coach throws a ground ball to the backhand side of the player. The fielder should move in the direction of the ball while keeping the glove open to make a backhanded catch the fielder throws back to the coach to repeat.

Safety

Always practice with the proper safety equipment. When in batting practice, the batter should always wear a helmet and if you are practicing in a batting cage, the pitcher should stand behind the “L” screen.

Arising in popularity are fielder’s masks, typically seen with fastpitch softball players. Practicing and playing with a fielder’s mask can prevent injuries that a line drive or ground ball with a hop can cause.

Most of all, it is important to pay attention whenever you are at practice. Many drills can be happening simultaneously and by being aware of your surroundings, you can prevent accidents and injuries from happening.

Play It Again Sports ~ Brentwood & Hendersonville

Play-it-Again-Sports-SeptemberFor all of your fall softball practice and safety gear Play It Again Sports ~ Brentwood & Hendersonville have you covered. Stop in and check out all the equipment you need to make your fall ball or off-season training great.

 

To help you with this season’s prep, Play It Again Sports ~ Brentwood and Play It Again Sports ~ Hendersonville is offering 10% Off Softball Fielder’s Masks September 19 – 30, 2022. 

Have a question for Play It Again Sports ~ Brentwood, fill out the form below:

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here