Baseball Fielding Drill | Mobility 40’S
Fielding the baseball is one of the most important elements of playing the game of baseball. A great pitching staff and defense will take any baseball team to the next level. The Mobility 40's drill is an amazing fielding drill that challenges all aspects of fielding the baseball. With the combination of lateral and linear movements each baseball player will build speed and hand eye coordination. Take a look at the video below as we walk through each element of this fielding drill. Pay close attention to the spacing and timing of each ground ball as well as the form and technique used.
Charging The Baseball | Proper Approach
After you get your speed and agility cones placed wide enough to begin the drill it's important to focus on each element of what the fielder will be going through with proper body mechanics and approach to each ground ball. Baseball players will be able to enhance their skills quickly. To begin the Fielding Mobility 40’s, baseball players will begin charging the baseball. They will have no other mindset but to get 20 yards and reach the cones. Charging hard will eliminate all distractions and optimize game like situations. As the baseball player sprints toward the coach, a ball will be thrown out laterally from side to side.
Now the baseball player will break down and quickly shuffle toward the baseball. This is a great way for baseball players to adjust to a ground ball that is hit to either side of them. Body positioning is key here. Baseball players must work to get their butts low and hands out in front of them. The proper fielding position must be attained as soon as possible to increase fielding percentage. Leaving the butt high in the air with the chest low to the ground will leave the baseball player in an improper fielding position allowing a bad hop to get the best of them. As the baseball player shuffles to the side they must keep in a low athletic stance with their hands out in front as they approach the ball.
Infielder Ground Ball Adjustments and Body Positioning
When completing the Mobility 40's Fielding Drills there will be a lot of head movement due to the sprint speed. Each approach to the baseball should be completed with proper body positioning to ensure a stable head. This will help baseball players locate the baseball and cradle it within their glove. Another key to fielding the baseball is making sure that the hands are out in front of the body. Younger baseball players have a bad habit of keeping their hands underneath their bodies to field the baseball between their legs.
This is a bad habit that must be broken. Hands must be out in front in a low athletic stance. If the ball takes a bad hop, and the baseball player’s hands are in front of them, they will be able to adjust to the movement and cradle the ball. If their hands are underneath their legs and a bad hop approaches, there will be no time for adjustments from this body position to field the baseball. Head position is also key as each baseball player fields a ground ball. As the baseball approaches athletes must follow the ball all the way in bringing their chin toward their chest. Coaches must make sure to watch for the top of the hat when working through fielding drills. Often times in the game of baseball when an error is made the athlete is attempting to throw the baseball before they have caught it. This is a very simple mistake that can happen in the heat of a play but can be prevented with fundamental training during infield drills.
Be sure that each ground ball is fielded in a low athletic stance, with your hands out front, and you track the baseball all the way in taking your chin to your chest.
Baseball Fielding Range | Over The Shoulder Catches
As the baseball player fields the ground ball and tosses the ball off to the side they will immediately begin to sprint forward once again. This is the key to the drill. Continue to accelerate forward as you adjust to each ground ball. After a short sprint, once again you will need to adjust to a lateral ground ball before reaching the 20 yard mark. After you have sprinted all the way toward the cones the coach will then throw the baseball deep to initiate an over the shoulder catch. The baseball should be near the 15 to 20 yard mark so that each athlete has to challenge their range and sprint speed. The key to tracking a ball over the shoulder is to judge whether or not your sprint speed is adequate. If a baseball player decides that he needs more speed, it is essential that he drops his head and sprints to where the ball will be without tracking it. Then, as the baseball player reaches the destination he will then pick up the baseball again before catching it in the glove.
This technique is a great way to snag a fly ball near the edge of your range. As for other more reachable fly balls, each baseball player will sprint tracking the baseball, running on the balls of your feet, working to maintain a level head. The more each athlete can continue sprinting with a steady head the easier it will be to track the baseball and make the play. If a bouncy stride is used, then the baseball will shake in your eyes and make it very hard to track. Sprint using smooth strides using your arms to accelerate your body and driving through the resistance with your knees.
Why Use Kbands Leg Resistance Bands
Kbands are a great way for baseball players to build more range when fielding the baseball. During the Mobility 40's Fielding Drill each baseball player will be sprinting near 20 yards forward and then 20 yards back catching a fly ball over their shoulder. The entire time they will be under resistance learning to fire through full muscle activation. By initiating hip flexor strength and lateral activation during each ground ball, baseball players will feel the muscles that are working.
Each athlete will have a better understanding of how to improve themselves during each repetition. By understanding the proper body mechanics during each lateral movement Kbands will be used during resisted sets followed by unresisted sets. The resisted sets will strengthen each athlete’s hips and activate the muscles needed to accelerate to the baseball. After the resisted sets move to unresisted sets and get back into your body. Athletes will feel free and easy running with full range of motion. It is essential that each athlete work to maximize their speed during each repetition.