Purpose

To improve a player reaction time when fielding.

Set Up

  • Make a square with 4 cones spread about 15 feet apart from each other. Coach stands in the middle with 4 tennis balls. Fielders line up to first cone with gloves on.
Players make four consecutive catches, running around a four cone square.

Instructions

  1. First fielder in line takes their place at cone #1 facing AWAY from coach.
  2. Coach throws the first tennis ball toward cone #1 and yells “GO” as soon as ball is released.
  3. When fielder hears “GO” they turn around and catch ball.
  4. After catching the first ball, player drops ball to the ground and runs to cone two.
  5. Coach throws the ball to cone #2 as player is rounding the cone, so they have to catch it as their body is turning. If successful catch is made, player drops ball on ground.
  6. Play continues until fielder has rounded all four cones and coach as thrown all four tennis balls.
  7. At the end of the drill all four tennis balls are returned to coach and drill begins again with second player in line.

Coaching Tips

  • Begin the slide around 6-8 feet away from the bag. Sprint hard and lower yourself into the slide. Do not slow down and lose momentum or you’ll come up short.
  • Extend the top leg forward while tucking the bottom leg under your knee, forming a figure four.
  • Throw the hands up and lean back while gliding into the bag, touching it with your lead foot.
  • Make it harder: Players can start laying flat on their stomachs
  • Make it easier: Lay out a flattened cardboard box in front of the base. This will reduce friction and allow players to slide more easily.

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