12 Signs of Good Baserunning

free baserunning tips from Yankee Doug Bernier

NY Yankee Doug Bernier (author) baserunning during a 2011 spring training game.  Image by Ed Wolfstein.

The great thing about base running is that everyone can be good at it.  Different from hitting, fielding, and throwing, running the bases is more about knowledge and effort, not just technique and talent.

Speed is not the most important factor in baserunning.  How much heart, effort, and savvy you put into your baserunning determines how good of a base runner you will be.  Putting pressure on the defense creates mistakes and can turn into runs for your team.

When do you become a base runner?

Baserunning begins once you put the bat on the baseball.  Once the ball is hit you are no longer a hitter, you are a runner.

12 Signs of a Good Baserunning

When answering the question of how to run bases, here are 12 things you can focus on learning or improving.

1.  Being able to go from 1st to 3rd on a base hit to the outfield (when possible).
2.  Reading a line drive while on 2nd base and being able to score on a single.
3.  Running hard all the time.
4.  Knowing how and when to break up plays by sliding hard into base.
5.  Not missing any signs put on by the coach.
6.  Being able to read and anticipate pitched balls in the dirt and advancing when possible.
7.  Knowing your speed and understanding when to take a chance and when to play it more conservative.
8.  Not making the first or third out at 3rd base.
9.  Knowing where your defense is playing behind you, especially the outfielders so you can react to the ball and not have to wait and look to see what happens.
10.  Not getting doubled up on a line drive to an infielder.
11.  Always running hard through home, especially with two outs.  If a runner gets thrown out trying to stretch a single into a double and you are taking your time touching home and the out happens before you score, the run does not count.
12.  Getting good secondary leads so you can try to get that extra base on a hit.


I hope this article on 12 Signs of Good Baserunning can help you evaluate accurately evaluate your baserunning skills so you know your strengths, as well as where you can improve your game.  Play hard.  – Doug


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About Author

Avatar für Doug Bernier

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, PIT 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. (You should click to watch this great defensive play by Bernier) Where is he now? After 16 years of playing professionally, Doug retired and took a position as a Major League scout with the Colorado Rockies for 2 years. Currently Doug is the Data and Game Planning Coordinator with the Colorado Rockies


  1. Avatar für Guy that was fast
    Guy that was fast on

    Sometimes going for third with two outs can win the game. 1 passed ball, then batter strikes out, proving that 3rd out at at 3rd might be brilliant

  2. Avatar für Ron Collett

    Excellent breakdowns on the mental nuances of base running. Everything an exceptional base runner should know plus more. Thank you Doug.

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