7 Communication Plays that Win or Lose Baseball Games [Infographic]

Posted by Camille D.C. Sutton | Nov 11, 2015 12:00:00 PM

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"In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is." The source of all baseball wisdom, Yogi Berra, couldn't be more accurate. Especially when it comes down to the practice of communication plays. 

It's absolutely vital to carve out practice time for plays that rely on the verbal aspect of making the out. In the heat of the game, unprepared players panic with the pressure, forget to broadcast their presence, and inevitably find out all too late that their fellow comrades either assumed the other would rise to the occasion, or inevitably make contact with more than just the ball. 

So when it comes to focusing on communication, how do you educate your players on the most successful protocols for each game situation? Take a look at this infographic to discover the simple ingredients to instill confidence in your players when these fielding situations arise.

7 Communication Plays That Win or Lose Games Infographic


It's all in the details...

1. Hard bunt down the 3rd base line

3rd baseman must make a strong, aggressive decision early. "When in doubt, get an out." The out is at 1B.

2. Popup behind the mound

Popup Priority in the infield:

SS over 2B

2B over 3B

3B over 1B

1B over Pitcher

Pitcher over Catcher

When there is a ball called multiple times by two or more players, the player with priority takes charge and catches the ball while other players yield to the priority.

3. Ground Ball up the middle

As a rule, the SS should try to cut in front of the 2nd baseman to make the play.

4. Fly ball short right field line

This ball usually ends up further toward the line than the fielders think. Don't drift on this ball!

5. Popup near the 3rd base dugout

This ball will typically go up toward foul territory, and because of the back spin on the ball, come back towards the middle of the field.

6. Popup to short center field

Infielders should call the ball multiple times and wave arms when they are positioned to catch ball. If infielders are running out to catch the ball, the outfielder should come in and make the easier catch running in.

7. Swinging bunt between the 1st and 2nd baseman

Pitcher should run hard toward 1B line, then parallel to 1B line. If he can field the ball without changing his route, then he should do so and tag 1B himself. If he can't, he should continue along his route and cover 1B. Either the 1st baseman or 2nd baseman will field the ball and flip or throw the ball to the pitcher in stride as the pitcher approaches 1B. 


7 Communication Plays That Win or Lose Games for Visual Learners


Did you know that you can recreate this drill using FungoMan?

Adding this routine to the FungoMan wireless remote gives coaches and players a drill that will replicate these plays simply and accurately. The drill is most effective when run with the entire team on the field.

FungoMan Screenshot of Communication Plays

How to practice these game situations:

1. Each play in the routine has player responsibilities and techniques that should be discussed prior to executing the play.

2. Plays should be “walked through” at a slow pace to discuss and demonstrate proper execution.

3. As proficiency is developed, the drill should be executed at game speed.

4. Finally, by simulating a game situation with number of outs and base runners, the drill becomes an intense mental conditioning practice, as well as a tool to develop proper techniques and communication.

How to add the drill to your FungoMan Wireless Remote:
1. Create a new user created routine by making a copy of ROUTINE ONE

2. Rename the copied drill to 7 Communication Plays that Win or Lose Games

3. Add each ball to the routine (Options, Add Ball)

4. Describe each ball from the BALL PAGE

5. After all of the balls have been entered, test the drill on the field and make adjustments to each ball as needed from the BALL PAGE

This routine doesn’t contain all of the plays that require communication on the field. Therefore, feel free to add balls to this list. Since the drill is run using the coach control mode (balls are fired manually), the coach always has the option to skip a ball in the routine list.


Topics: Baseball, Coaching, Baseball Coaching, Softball, FungoMan, Baseball Communication, Game Situations, Communication, Making outs, baseball theory, Popups

Written by Camille D.C. Sutton

Let's just say that I can hang with the best of them in a game of serious wiffle ball. An expert observer, baseball admirer, and baseball coach's daughter, I'm just here to share the latest and greatest in baseball development, baseball training, and maybe some of my peanuts at the ballpark.

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