Good fielding requires a potent combination of mobility, speed, agility and ball-handling skills. I've put together this set of baseball agility drills to help you become faster and more nimble in the field.
Agility Drills Without the Ball
This drill teaches you to move from side to side while keeping the ball in front of you. You will need a partner.
- Begin in athletic position, facing your partner.
- Shuffle in the direction your partner tells you.
- If you shuffle to the right, push off with your left foot and step out with your right.
- Avoid crossing your feet.
- Switch feet and perform to the left.
- Perform for 20-30 seconds, changing directions on your partner's cues. Once you have mastered the movement, it becomes a great warm-up drill.
Crossover Step + Sprint
The crossover step is a fundamental skill for fielding. To set up this drill, place a cone 5 yards to your right and another 5 yards to your left.
- Assume an athletic stance.
- To move to the right, pivot both feet approximately 45 degrees to the right.
- Cross your left foot in front of your right and step to the right with your right foot, then sprint to the cone to your right.
- Switch feet and do the move to the left side.
- Perform three to five times in each direction.
Sprint + Stop
This drill reinforces how to charge ground balls.
- Assume a good fielding position.
- Move your right leg forward.
- Sprint forward 10 to 15 yards.
- As you reach the finish line, chop your steps and lower your center of gravity so that when you stop, your left leg is slightly ahead of your right, enabling you to field the imaginary ball.
Agility Drills With the Ball
Shuffle to the Ball
This is an advanced version of the Shuffle drill described above.
- Have your partner toss the ball toward your right or left.
- Keeping the ball in front of you, shuffle to field the ball and come up ready to throw.
Field on the Run
The description below is for a right-handed thrower. A left-hander should reverse his feet.
- Stand 10 to 15 yards in front of a partner.
- Assume a good fielding position but move your right leg slightly forward.
- Have your partner roll the ball toward you.
- Sprint to the ball and field it in your glove with your left foot slightly ahead of your right.
- Come up with the ball and prepare to throw it.
Crossover Step to the Ball
- Stand 10 to 15 feet in front of a partner in good fielding position.
- Have your partner roll the ball toward your side.
- As the ball is released, make a crossover step in the direction of the ball.
- Sprint to stay in front of the ball.
- Stop, get into fielding position and field the ball.
- Come up ready to throw.
- Perform to both sides.
Baseball Agility Workout
Perform these drills during your speed and agility workouts. Begin with a slow jog, followed by 10 to 15 minutes of mobility exercises. Next, perform one of the drills without the ball for three to five reps. Do the ball variations for three to five reps. Then move on to your other speed and agility exercises for the day.
- 400-yard slow jog
- 10 to 15 minutes of mobility exercises
- Shuffle, 5x each direction
- Shuffle to the Ball, 5x each direction
- 20-yard sprints, 5x
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