Base-Stealing Speed Training Drills

November 7, 2012 | Eric Bunnell

Must See Baseball Videos

Improve your ability to steal home bases by becoming a faster athlete. Don't buy the excuse that "speed can't be taught." Here are three base-stealing speed drills that prove that it can. (Want more? See Guide To Base Running Strategy Drills to Improve Your Base-Stealing and 4 of the Best Base-Running Drills)

Tennis Ball Starts

Needed: A partner and a space covering 15 to 20 feet

  • Start in base-stealing stance with partner standing five to 10 feet away (distance depends on your speed) holding tennis ball at shoulder height
  • Drill starts when partner drops ball
  • Break toward ball and try to catch it before it hits ground a second time
  • To increase difficulty, partner moves further away or releases ball closer to ground

Extra bases:  My runners earn bonus points when they lean forward to catch the ball. This actually helps increase their speed, because they have to move faster to stay upright.

Skier Hops

  • Assume base-stealing stance with weight on lead (right) foot
  • Hop laterally as far as you can, landing on left foot
  • Quickly hop back to right foot, then back to left foot, and repeat
  • After third hop, end with weight on left foot
  • Exploding off planted foot, sprint a designated distance (anywhere from 15 to 90 feet)
  • Feel your weight transfer as you explode towards second base

Extra bases: Pitchers can also benefit from this drill. Left-handed pitchers line up the same way as position players, but right-handed pitchers switch position so they face in opposite direction and start on their left foot. Pitchers end up transitioning from their third hop to a sprint using their plant leg, just as if they were on the mound.

Slingshots

Needed: stretch band and partner

  • Start with band around partner's waist
  • Partner assumes base-stealing stance and quickly breaks towards second, pumping arms and bringing knees to chest
  • Resist partner's progress for the first 15 to 20 feet
  • Release band
  • Partner accelerates through the finish line (second base)
  • Switch positions
Learn about more base stealing drills.

Extra bases: During the first part of the drill, you resist your partner, using your lower body strength to hold him back. When your partner slows down, you begin to pick up speed. Use the force generated from resisting him to propel yourself to second base. Feel the slingshot effect forcing you to run faster through the finish line. 

Eric Bunnell
- Eric Bunnell has coached college baseball for nearly a decade. He currently works with infielders, catchers and base runners at Lake Erie College in Painesville,...
Eric Bunnell
- Eric Bunnell has coached college baseball for nearly a decade. He currently works with infielders, catchers and base runners at Lake Erie College in Painesville,...
Must See
Why NFL Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson Counts His Blessings Why NFL Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson Counts His Blessings
Views: 7,600,833
Margus Hunt Benches 385 Pounds for Five Reps Margus Hunt Benches 385 Pounds for Five Reps
Views: 21,160,760
Abby Wambach Will Do Whatever It Takes Abby Wambach Will Do Whatever It Takes
Views: 6,045,808

Featured Videos

Tobin Heath Closed-Space Dribbling Tobin Heath Closed-Space Dribbling Views: 1,176,227
Path to the Pros 2015: Shaq Thompson Path to the Pros 2015: Shaq Thompson Views: 71,092
Basketball Shooting Drill With Kevin Love: 5 Spots, 5 Shots Basketball Shooting Drill With Kevin Love: 5 Spots, 5 Shots Views: 245,612
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

Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night
Views: 5,845,858
Colby Lewis's Four-Seam Fastball Technique Colby Lewis's Four-Seam Fastball Technique
Views: 5,017,594
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: 11,442,976
Two-Ball Dribbling Drill With John Wall Two-Ball Dribbling Drill With John Wall
Views: 3,362,918

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like
Get Faster with High-Speed Treadmill Training

Get Faster with High-Speed Treadmill Training

Improvements in sprinting speed have been manipulated through the use of various techniques and unique instruments over many decades. The high speed...

5 Stretches That Can Instantly Make You Faster

5 Stretches That Can Instantly Make You Faster

Get Even More Out of Your Hill Sprints With These Variations

Get Even More Out of Your Hill Sprints With These Variations

King of the Hill: 5 Hill Run Exercises to Supercharge Your Speed

King of the Hill: 5 Hill Run Exercises to Supercharge Your Speed

A Linear Speed Progression for Increasing In-Game Speed

A Linear Speed Progression for Increasing In-Game Speed

5 Movements You Should Be Doing to Gain Football Speed

5 Movements You Should Be Doing to Gain Football Speed

Run Faster and Longer

Run Faster and Longer

Speed Drill of the Day: Get More Explosive with Ankle Hops

Speed Drill of the Day: Get More Explosive with Ankle Hops

Six-Pack for Speed: 5 Core Exercises That Can Make You Faster

Six-Pack for Speed: 5 Core Exercises That Can Make You Faster

Why Agility Is Critical for Soccer Players

Why Agility Is Critical for Soccer Players

Sprinting Tips from Olympic Gold Medalist Michael Johnson

Sprinting Tips from Olympic Gold Medalist Michael Johnson

Todd Durkin's 5 Exercises to Increase Your Agility

Todd Durkin's 5 Exercises to Increase Your Agility

These 5 Drills Will Increase Your Baseball-Specific Speed

These 5 Drills Will Increase Your Baseball-Specific Speed

How the Cable Machine Can Help You Get Faster

How the Cable Machine Can Help You Get Faster

3 Ways to Build Sprint Speed (No Sprinting Required)

3 Ways to Build Sprint Speed (No Sprinting Required)

Resisted Sprints: Use the Right Weight to Get Faster

Resisted Sprints: Use the Right Weight to Get Faster

Feed for Speed: 5 Foods and Supplements That Make You Faster

Feed for Speed: 5 Foods and Supplements That Make You Faster

Fine-Tuning Soccer Sprint Speed

Fine-Tuning Soccer Sprint Speed

What Is Fast in Soccer?

What Is Fast in Soccer?

Developing Soccer-Specific Speed

Developing Soccer-Specific Speed

Soccer Players: Get Quick on the Pitch

Soccer Players: Get Quick on the Pitch

3 Acceleration Drills to Get Faster

3 Acceleration Drills to Get Faster

NFL RB Zac Stacy Works to Get Faster for the 2015 Season

NFL RB Zac Stacy Works to Get Faster for the 2015 Season

Building Sprint Speed for Soccer Players

Building Sprint Speed for Soccer Players

Why Youth Athletes Need to Focus On Strength to Improve Speed

Why Youth Athletes Need to Focus On Strength to Improve Speed

YardBarker