As I watch youth baseball today as a fan, coach, and recruiter there is one thing that is missing, Communication. Are you noticing it also? That youth baseball players from 10U to high school do not communicate properly on the field during games. And I am not just talking about after the ball is put in play. There is little to no communication between pitches. No encouraging teammates, no trash talking, no “heads up” baseball communication between fielders, NOTHING!
As a coach this drives me insane!!! The lack of communication on the field literally loses baseball games and players just don’t seem to understand that. Not only does it lose baseball games but it is very boring to watch!! During a 17U game this fall I literally watched a game and could hear crickets. Are you kidding me! And to top it off the the very next play the defense threw the ball to the wrong base because NO ONE said a word after the Outfielder got to the ball. Unbelievable!
Communication is one of, if not, the most important aspects to winning baseball games. Here is a short list of the many reasons Why Communication is Important?
- It keeps players and teams in the game mentally
- Prepares players for the next play
- Exemplifies confidence
- Keeps adrenaline pumping
- Minimizes the chances for wrong decisions/bad plays
- Can put anxiety or fear in the head of other team
- Builds confidence in your teammates
Another great example why communication is important is over the last 4 years as I have been coaching 17u baseball and speaking with college coaches I always ask if communication is something they look for when recruiting a player and almost every coach says to me “absolutely”. The biggest reason why they say they look for this is because it shows that the player is in the game mentally and ready for the next play.
Coaches, it is imperative that you work on communication during your practices and stress the importance of it to your players. Too many players are getting to the High School level not communicating properly and finding themselves on the bench because of it. Stress the importance of picking their teammates up and keeping each other in the game in-between pitches.
Players, when you watch college and professional baseball games watch intently. I would be willing to bet that very few pitches ever go by without a player communicating to his teammate. Especially at the college level. Communicating on the field is another way to separate yourself from other players since most players do not talk. I promise you it will make you look good.
Lets get out on the field and start leading our teams to victory through communication!