Holding Runners on Second Base

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Tom / April 8, 2013

“Hi Doug,

…I am playing 2nd base, but I normally play outfield. I read your instructions on how to setup depending on various scenarios. One thing that I don’t seem to be getting a hang of is holding runners on second base. Any tips would be helpful.  Thank you,

Tom”

Pro Answer: Holding Runners on Second Base

Pro tips for holding runners on second base

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Doug Bernier / April 25, 2013 

Tom,

Thanks for your question.

Positioning.  As a second baseman I feel it is important to be about 15 feet behind the second base bag and maybe 5 – 10 feet to the left of the bag.

As the pitcher is coming set start walking straight toward the pitcher. (Being deep makes it difficult for the runner to see you, it makes the runner a little wary because he doesn’t have a good feel of where you actually are).

Decisions.  As you get closer to the base make your decision to either shuffle a couple steps away from the bag and get ready to field a ball or break to the bag.

Usually I like to pick out a spot on the field, if the runner gets to that spot I like to attempt a pick off, if he is short of that mark I like to shuffle back and get ready to field a ball. As you shuffle into fielding position don’t feel you have to get all the way into a normal second base position.

Go Time.  Get a couple shuffles and be ready by the time the ball crosses the hitting zone.

For more detailed information on holding the runner, check out this article.

You have to give up a little range to keep the runner close. Good luck on your transition to the infield, hope this helps and good luck.

Doug Bernier

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About Author

Doug Bernier, founder of Pro Baseball Insider.com, debuted in the Major Leagues in 2008 with the Colorado Rockies, and has played professional baseball for 5 organizations (CO Rockies, NY Yankees, Pirates, MN Twins, & TX Rangers) over the past 16 years. He has Major League time at every infield position, and has played every position on the field professionally except for catcher. Where is he now? After batting .200 in 45 at-bats and fielding .950 during 2017 spring training with the Rangers, Doug was assigned to the Ranger's AAA team the Round Rock Express. You should click to watch this great defensive play by Bernier

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2 Comments

    • Ed,
      The best way to improve your catching and throwing is to just practice. Throw with a partner or even throw against a wall. Practicing is the best way to get better.

      Doug

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