Playing Outfield In Baseball
Playing Outfield In Baseball
Alan Jaeger (Pitching Coach / Founder) gives expert video advice on: What is the 'warning track' on a baseball field?; What is a 'left fielder' in baseball?; What are the defensive responsibilities of a left fielder in baseball? and more...
What is the 'warning track' on a baseball field?
The warning track in baseball is designed to keep the outfielders from running into the wall and getting hurt. They know the last ten to fifteen feet on the field is made of dirt, so when the feet go from the grass to the dirt, it's a subconscious alert that they're getting close to the wall. So it's there to protect them.
What is a 'left fielder' in baseball?
The left fielder in baseball is one of three outfielders. There's an outfielder for the left side of the field, there's an outfielder for the center part of the field, and there's an outfielder for the right side of the field. So the left fielder, his responsibility is as much territory as he can cover that's beyond the infield dirt, and he needs to be strategically in a position where he can cover as much ground in front of him as he can behind him.
What are the defensive responsibilities of a left fielder in baseball?
The defensive responsibilities of a left fielder is to try to catch anything he can in the air. That's the easiest way to get an out. Secondly, anything hit on the ground to him, he's got to be able to anticipate and know where to throw the ball ahead of time. If he's aware of what to do, then he has a chance of throwing a ball to a base and getting a runner out. Thirdly, hopefully he's worked on developing his arm to be very strong. The stronger his arm is, the better chance he has of influencing the game from the defensive point of view. Lastly, like most players on the field, he'll have some responsibility to back up bases. The outfielders don't get as involved as the infielders, but if there's a ball, for instance, hit down the right field line and there's going to be a play at third base, the left fielder's responsibility is to get behind the third baseman at an angle and to serve as a backup.
What is a 'center fielder' in baseball?
A center fielder in baseball is one of three out field positions. You've got the left fielder and you've got the right fielder, he's the captain of the outfield. He's got more territory to cover than any of the other positions because he's got to cover right center and left center, and it' really up to him to stay in charge of balls hit in the outfield. If he can get to any ball then it's his job to call off the other outfielders. He'll usually be your fastest position player because he's got so much ground to cover and he rarely has any other responsibilities other than catching the ball for outs and trying to throw runners out at each base. Once in a while he'll have the responsibility to actually come down to second base and cover second base in the event maybe of a run-down, but he's one of the rare players in the field that doesn't have a whole lot of back up responsibility on the infield.
What are the defensive responsibilities of a center fielder in baseball?
The defensive responsibilities of a center fielder are naturally to field his position, meaning any fly ball he can get to, that's his responsibility. Anything hit on the ground. He just has to have good awareness, good anticipation as to where he needs to throw the ball. Obviously, if he has a strong arm, that would help a lot. So it's his responsibility to work on developing his arm strength. Lastly, defensively he doesn't have a lot to do as far as backing up bases. He can back up the throw to second on a runner trying to steal second. He tends to come in any time there is a big pickle going on in the infield, so he can serve as one of the players to rotate in, in case they need him. But those are really the major responsibilities of a center fielder.
What is a 'right fielder' in baseball?
A right fielder in baseball is one of three outfielders. You have the left fielder, you have the centre fielder and you have the right fielder. His job is more of the right side of the field. The right fielder is located in the outfield, away from the infield. He usually has about as much space in front of him as he does behind him.
What are the defensive responsibilities of a right fielder in baseball?
The defensive responsibilities of a right fielder is to position himself well so that he can catch as many fly balls as he can, and to be able to anticipate any balls that are hit on the ground. Also, he needs to be aware as to where the runners are and what base he needs to throw to. Traditionally, the right fielder tends to have the strongest arm because he's got to make the throw, not just to second base like everybody else, but he's got to go all the way across the diamond, the infield, to get to third base. Having a very strong arm is important as a right fielder. Lastly, like most position players on the field, he needs to be able to back up certain bases. Invariably, there will come a point where a right fielder will need to come in and either back up a throw, or if there's a pickle going on in the infield he needs to get to the infield and be one of the guys that can rotate into the pickle in case he's needed.
What are some techniques for an outfielder on how to judge the depth of a pop fly in baseball?
The best way for an outfielder to really learn how to judge the depth of the ball is practice. I've played outfield before and I know from experience that it just becomes a very instinctive thing, it's like a receiver going for a pass, you don't really think about it, you just kind of know to trust your instincts and those instincts are developed through practice. So there's really not a sure-fire way to say "well how do you develop that technique" it's more something that just comes through repetition and practice.
What are some factors an outfielder should consider as the batter is about to hit the ball in baseball?
Some of the factors an outfielder should consider before the batter is hitting the ball is what he has done previously. Was he late on the pitch? This would mean that maybe he's not a very strong hitter. Maybe his hands aren't as quick, which means the ball is going to tend to go to the right side of the field if he is a right handed hitter. Size matters. If it's a big strong guy then the chances are he's probably going to pull the ball to the left side of the field if he's right handed. If he's small, you might look at it the other way around. So as an outfielder, you're really looking for tendencies, that's your goal, to see what they tend to do, and it might be pitch to pitch. He may be a great curve ball hitter, he may be really late on the fast ball, he might be a great fast ball hitter which means he might pull it very well. So again, it's anticipating.