In my last post, I took a look at the different kinds of tags a 3rd baseman would use. Here the defensive player had to
make the catch and then tag the baserunner out before they can touch the base. But in the case of a force, or a first baseman, simply tagging the base with the ball in their possession results in an out, so they use a different kind of tag at the base.
Both techniques are fairly similar, changing only from forehand to backhand. First we’ll take a look at the forehand. At first base we don’t have the time to straddle the bag, so our technique changes. She’s going to sneak a quick look back at the base so that she knows her target, drop step back to the base, and make the tag. Either a low sweep tag or a vertical tag both work great here, and you can’t let your players choose between the two – as long as they’re getting the out!
Now if by chance she has time to straddle, you can go ahead and see her straddle right now. If she’s deep on the base, she can block the base. If you as a coach or a player have that system intact where you are actually are blocking the base, then go right ahead.
The forehand will feel very natural to most players, as the base is easier to see in your peripheral vision when you are facing the foul ball line. It’s a smooth motion, swinging your glove like a pendulum as it receives the ball and sweeps down to the base all at once.
But when were working the backhand, your 1st baseman will have to almost simultaneously peek, catch, and then reach across her body to tag the base. If you have any players that are struggling, try letting them get the footwork and motion down without a ball first, and then once they feel comfortable, re-introduce the ball to them again.
That’s all for today, if you’ve got any questions or comments, make sure to give me a shout below! And if you haven’t had a chance yet, check out the Softball Spot Facebook page!