Third Base

The third base player is usually played by a right handed player who is agile and has a good arm and a good glove.

I like to position her one or two step in front of the base and one step off the foul line. That way, no fair ball should get past her between the foul line and her. An 8U or 10U team, I may have them play up a couple steps closer to home.

If there is a bunting situation, the third base player should take an additional two steps toward home to put her in a better position to charge the ball. If the batter squares to bunt, she should be “crashing” down toward home. Always keep the glove up in case the batter quickly draws the bat back and swings. If the bunt comes her way, she should get the “sure out” at 1st. The 2nd base player will be covering 1st base for the throw. A sacrifice bunt is giving up the out at 1st in order to advance a runner to another base. To get the lead runner sounds good, but seldom happens. . If the lead runner happens to be on 3rd and she fields the ball, it’s worth a quick check to see if the runner is going home. It could be an easy out and if not, get the runner at 1st. The only time that you want to get the lead runner for sure is if the lead runner is going home for the game winning run.

When a ball is hit to her left, her angle of pursuit should be toward the 1st base. This angle will insure that she will not run into a base runner or the short stop. She should make a hard charge to get to the ball. Her momentum will make for a very easy throw to 1st. If she can not get to the ball, she will have made the short stops distance to the ball shorter.

The 1st and 3rd players has priority on pop flies over the pitcher and catcher, but if anyone else calls for the ball, they should back off and allow them to make the play. If you have the angle on a pop fly that the pitcher or catcher are going after, speak up, and make sure they hear you. This will avoid running into each other causing an error or worse yet, injury.

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