While pitchers play the most important position in baseball, their performance in many ways depends on the catcher. Catchers often act as managers on the field as they commonly call every pitch. They see the whole field and know how every opposing hitter operates and what are their strengths and weaknesses.
“A catcher has to be the smartest player on the field,” said Steve Stone, a White Sox television analyst who worked with dozens during his 11 years as a big-league pitcher. “He has to know the other team’s hitters. He has to know his own pitchers. He has to be on top of every situation and run the game.
Herman Long is the all-time leader in errors committed as a shortstop with 1,070. Long is the only shortstop to commit over 1,000 career errors. Bill Dahlen (975), Germany Smith (973), Tommy Corcoran (961) are the only other shortstops to commit over 900 career errors.
Still, the general consensus among baseball experts is that playing the right field is generally harder. The ball coming off the bat to the left field is commonly more predictable and has less of a spin to it. Most batters are righties and they rarely send balls of sliced pitches to the left field.
First Baseman (Position #3 on the field chart)
First baseman are the biggest power hitters on a team, and they are typically very big and relatively slow because of this.
Yadier Molina has spent 19 years in the MLB, every year being the best defensive catcher in baseball. His insane amount of knowledge behind the plate is what makes him the smartest baseball player currently in the MLB.
Ichiro has the strongest and most powerful arm of any outfielder in the major leagues today. Runners will not even try to advance extra bases when the ball is in Ichiro’s hands. Ichiro has won a Gold Glove all 10 years that he has been in the major leagues.
The outfield positions are generally considered to be easier to play than the infield positions and tend to be dominated by good hitters. Center field is usually considered the hardest outfield position.
As a result, first base is not usually perceived to be as physically demanding as other positions. However, it can also be a very hard position to play; a large amount of concentration and timing is required.
Lefties are ideal for first base because with their glove on their right hand, it makes it easy for them to turn to the base with their glove facing the field. Right-handed first basemen have to take a few extra steps to turn their bodies, which is a disadvantage for them compared to lefties.
But cornerbacks have it the hardest. The pre-reqs on being a cornerback involves being agile, fast, and quick. The player could be more athletic than the receiver, but still is at a disadvantage because he has no idea what route the player is going to run.
Throwing is the most important basic skill required of a good defensive player. The ability to throw accurately and quickly will make it hard for the opposition to score and advance runners. Having the correct throwing technique will allow you to hit your targets with greater consistency.
Overall, the center fielder is as important to the outfield as the shortstop is to the infield.
College baseball scouts evaluate players by arm strength, fielding range, speed, and hitting for power and average. Recruiting guidelines offer a good benchmark for student-athletes to compare themselves with athletes competing at the college level.
Baseball is an equivalency sport, which means that scholarships can be divided up and given to multiple players. A full-ride scholarship for baseball players is rare.
Of all outfielders, the left fielder often will have the weakest arm, as he generally does not need to throw the ball as far to prevent the advance of any baserunners.
Strong Defensive Skills
Defensive skills are the most crucial characteristic of any outfielder, not just the center fielder. Your fielding abilities are the primary reason you’re in that position because coaches won’t put anyone in the center field they can’t trust to lead the outfield.
Left field is an outfield position on the left side of the defensive baseball diamond. Left fielders catch balls hit in the air and field balls hit on the ground. Good left fielders are quick, have good hand-eye coordination, and can catch anything hit their way.
A lefty catcher would struggle to throw out runners at third base. This is true! Whereas a right-handed catcher can keep his feet planted and make the throw, a lefty would have to pivot first. This encumbrance counts on plays in which fractions of a second make the difference between safe or out.
“Lefties can’t play catcher because your head hangs over home plate when you make a tag.” “You’ve got the ball in your right hand, you’re blocking the plate with your left foot. When you go to make the tag, you’re exposed.
No, catchers do not currently have the ability to talk back to their coach using their earpiece and headset system. It’s currently a one-way communication from the coach to the catcher only. Many catchers have expressed that they hope two-way communication becomes a new innovation added to the game soon.
Batting Order Construction- The first or leadoff hitter should be good at getting on base and preferably a good baserunner as well.
In the traditional approach, the second hitter should be a good bat handler.
The third hitter is supposed to be the best all-around hitter on the team.
The last spot in your lineup should be reserved for the worst batter on your team. By definition, they will receive the fewest at-bats out of any spot in the lineup, thus mitigating their ineffectiveness quite a bit.