Multipurpose Agility Drill for Catchers

June 25, 2011

Must See Baseball Videos

Catching is all guts, no glory. Digging pitches out of the dirt or blocking the plate to tag base runners barreling down on you? Now that’s audacious.

Besides having no fear, what else does it take to make such gutsy plays? Rapid reaction time and agility.

Think about a base runner attempting to steal second. You may possess the strongest arm on the field, but if you can’t react to his jump and explode out of your stance, your throw will be late. The same goes for fielding a bunt or blocking a ball in the dirt. A catcher must react quickly and move into position to make the play.

Even if you’re not fleet of foot, fast reaction time can counteract what you lack in agility, says Doug Jarrow, strength and conditioning coordinator for the Chicago Cubs.

Whether you’re fielding a bunt, attempting to pick off a runner at first or throwing to second, you must stay low and keep your knees bent. “When you stand up, you lose your legs,” Jarrow says. “Once you straighten your legs, you lose that power to be able to explode and make a quick throw down to whatever base you’re going to.”

To reinforce exploding out of your squat stance to make a play, Jarrow recommends the Half-Moon Drill. He says, “We do this to work on their technique, foot speed and reaction time. It’s important to set up properly for each one. Each rep, you want to put 100 percent into exploding out of your stance, fielding the ball and making a nice, crisp throw to the base.”

The emphasis is on technique and replicating a game situation, so don't rush back to the dish following each throw.

Half-Moon Drill

  • Place 10 balls in half-moon pattern approximately 10 feet in front of home plate
  • Assume catcher’s stance with glove raised
  • Explode out of stance, field first ball and throw to first base
  • Return to start position; field and throw remaining balls
  • Set up Half-Moon pattern and perform second set by fielding and throwing to second base
  • Perform third set by fielding and throwing to third base

Rest: Walk back behind the plate and set up in stance

Coaching Points: Do not take drop step coming out of stance // Explode from stance as quickly and powerfully as possible // Keep knees bent and stay low // Focus on making accurate throw to base

Variation 1: Face partner in catcher’s stance. Partner holds glove up to give cue and rolls ball in. Jarrow says, "When a bunt is laid down in a game situation, they don’t know exactly where it’s going to be, so this adds some randomness, a more realistic component to the drill."

Variation 2: Number balls 1 to 10 from left to right. Partner calls out number. Explode from stance, field and throw that ball to specified base.

Photo:  lesterslegends.com

Zac Clark
- Zac Clark is STACK Media's Custom Content Manager. Prior to joining STACK in September 2008, he served as an editorial assistant for USA Hockey Magazine...
Zac Clark
- Zac Clark is STACK Media's Custom Content Manager. Prior to joining STACK in September 2008, he served as an editorial assistant for USA Hockey Magazine...
Must See
Brandon Jennings: Brandon Jennings: "Always Improve"
Views: 5,640,934
Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied
Views: 11,426,460
Patrick Willis' Homegrown Off-Season Workout Patrick Willis' Homegrown Off-Season Workout
Views: 1,230,166

Featured Videos

Tobin Heath Closed-Space Dribbling Tobin Heath Closed-Space Dribbling Views: 1,175,887
Real Workouts: Randall Cobb Real Workouts: Randall Cobb Views: 23,428
Path to the Pros 2015: Shaq Thompson Path to the Pros 2015: Shaq Thompson Views: 70,968
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill
Views: 9,499,251
Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied
Views: 11,426,460
Two-Ball Dribbling Drill With John Wall Two-Ball Dribbling Drill With John Wall
Views: 3,362,836
Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift
Views: 1,577,836
Dribbling Drills for Tighter Handles Dribbling Drills for Tighter Handles
Views: 4,333,222

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like
4 Tips to Become a Better Softball Pitcher

4 Tips to Become a Better Softball Pitcher

Although my career as a softball pitcher ended decades ago, I still identify with the sport because it continues to shape me off the field today. After...

Boost Your Fastball With This Weighted Baseball Workout

Boost Your Fastball With This Weighted Baseball Workout

Winter Soccer Workout to Improve Ball Handling

Winter Soccer Workout to Improve Ball Handling

3 Things You Are Doing Wrong In Your Basketball Training

3 Things You Are Doing Wrong In Your Basketball Training

3 Secrets of the NBA's Best Shooters

3 Secrets of the NBA's Best Shooters

The Football Route Tree, Explained

The Football Route Tree, Explained

Softball Pitchers: How to Play Your Best Over a Complete Season

Softball Pitchers: How to Play Your Best Over a Complete Season

How Ryan Mathews Returned to Highlight Reel Status

How Ryan Mathews Returned to Highlight Reel Status

Learn from Steph Curry: Stay the Course to Beat the Defense

Learn from Steph Curry: Stay the Course to Beat the Defense

Improve Your Jump Shot with Core Strength

Improve Your Jump Shot with Core Strength

Why You Shouldn't Specialize in One Sport Too Soon

Why You Shouldn't Specialize in One Sport Too Soon

How Stephen Curry Became the Best Shooter in the NBA

How Stephen Curry Became the Best Shooter in the NBA

10 Essential Point Guard Drills From Skylar Diggins

10 Essential Point Guard Drills From Skylar Diggins

3 Steps to Better In-Game Baseball Hitting

3 Steps to Better In-Game Baseball Hitting

Teach the Layup with the Two-Step Drill

Teach the Layup with the Two-Step Drill

Become a Better Point Guard With This Training Program

Become a Better Point Guard With This Training Program

Basketball Shooting Technique: How to Shoot a Floater

Basketball Shooting Technique: How to Shoot a Floater

Basketball Speed Drills for Offense

Basketball Speed Drills for Offense

Why Basketball Players Must Improve Their Weak Hand

Why Basketball Players Must Improve Their Weak Hand

'Squash the Bug' and Other Softball Batting Tips That Don't Work

'Squash the Bug' and Other Softball Batting Tips That Don't Work

These 3 Route-Running Drills Will Help You Get Open

These 3 Route-Running Drills Will Help You Get Open

How to Create a Killer Crossover Without a Basketball

How to Create a Killer Crossover Without a Basketball

Build a Better Layup With These Basketball Speed Drills

Build a Better Layup With These Basketball Speed Drills

WATCH: 5 Post Moves From Nerlens Noel

WATCH: 5 Post Moves From Nerlens Noel

Wide Receivers: Learn to Catch Every Jump Ball, Every Time

Wide Receivers: Learn to Catch Every Jump Ball, Every Time

Become a Better Baserunner With This Agility Drill

Become a Better Baserunner With This Agility Drill

Success With Health: How Trevor Bauer Increased His Velocity

Success With Health: How Trevor Bauer Increased His Velocity

5 Drills to Improve Your Soccer Dribbling Skills

5 Drills to Improve Your Soccer Dribbling Skills

Learn to Shoot a Basketball with the BEEF Method

Learn to Shoot a Basketball with the BEEF Method

10 Tips Every AAU Player Must Know

10 Tips Every AAU Player Must Know

Drills for a Better Pole Vault Swing

Drills for a Better Pole Vault Swing

4 Soccer Drills to Shoot Better While on the Move

4 Soccer Drills to Shoot Better While on the Move

Drive Defenders Crazy With These Super Moves from NBA Legends

Drive Defenders Crazy With These Super Moves from NBA Legends

Preparation Nation: DeMatha Stags

Preparation Nation: DeMatha Stags

How to Improve Your Football Skills Mid-Season

How to Improve Your Football Skills Mid-Season

2 Drills to Help You Play Lockdown Basketball Defense

2 Drills to Help You Play Lockdown Basketball Defense

4 Tips for Coaching Low-Velocity Softball Pitchers

4 Tips for Coaching Low-Velocity Softball Pitchers

Improve Your Basketball Passes With Med Ball Exercises

Improve Your Basketball Passes With Med Ball Exercises

The 4 Fundamentals of Hitting a Baseball

The 4 Fundamentals of Hitting a Baseball

4 Drills That'll Help You Become an Elite Running Back

4 Drills That'll Help You Become an Elite Running Back

How QB Ryan Tannehill Beats the Blitz

How QB Ryan Tannehill Beats the Blitz

YardBarker