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Monday, November 2, 2009

Baseball Coaching Tips - Protect the Runner From What?

By Larry Cicchiello

A base runner breaks for second base for a stolen base attempt. The batter swings at the pitch and quite often an announcer will say that the batter swung to protect the runner. Was the runner in some type of danger and needed protection? No. The runner is simply trying to steal a base.

Forget about protecting the runner and a much better option for the batter is to help the runner instead.

Square around as if to bunt even though you have no intention of bunting.
Place the bat at approximately the eye level of the catcher.
At the last second, pull the bat away and do not attempt the bunt.
This will slightly block the vision of the catcher when he tries to catch the ball and also will prevent him from aggressively jumping out of his stance and gaining momentum toward the base he's throwing to.
Catchers don't like this because they can't make their normal throw that they practice all the time.
It disrupts their timing as well as their footwork.
Usually, there's a good chance the catcher's throw will not be a good one.

It's a very effective play and one of the smartest baseball coaching tips you will learn. Very few players know about it and that's why it is not done often.

Please note well that this should be used at advanced levels of play ONLY.

It should not be used by young players that are just starting out and learning to play baseball.

There is a huge difference between baseball coaching tips for young players and baseball coaching tips for players at the high school level of play and beyond.

Eight to ten year old players compared to players that are fifteen years old and up should be coached accordingly.

Please don't ever forget that.

Larry Cicchiello is the author of "Excellent Baseball Coaching: 30 Seconds Away." His site offers many FREE baseball tips on hitting, baseball pitching tips, baseball coaching drills, etc. You will be FULLY EQUIPPED!

You can visit his website at

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Hello Baseball Friend,
I welcome any comments or suggestions. If you have a question or a topic that you would like to read about, please leave a comment and I will try to address that topic as soon as I can. Good luck in the coming season!
Have a great day, Nick