What is the Ready Position in Baseball? The Ready Position in Baseball is a position used to describe the player’s readiness for play. It is a set position for players to get ready to swing, bunt, run or throw. The Ready Position has the player on their toes with knees flexed and have arms down by their side with one hand lightly touching the pocket of the glove.
What is the Ready Position in Baseball?
There are 3 main parts to the Ready Position.
- The Feet – Players feet should be shoulder width apart and they will be on their toes with their knees flexed. Ankles should be locked and players must not have their heels off the ground. Feet are facing forward or at a 45 degree angle for bunting.
- The Glove – One hand lightly touching the pocket of the glove, not resting it in there but just touching it for balance and control purposes. Make sure the glove is at waist level. Place hands lightly in front of their body with one hand touching the pocket of the glove for a good grip. Hands should not be open or closed but rather relaxed, slightly open which is why they touch your glove at all times.
- The Bat – In one hand, holding it down by their side with a loose grip as to not choke the bat and make sure that it does not touch any part of their pants or belt. Players will have a slight bend in their elbow with shoulder height being good for most players, but coaches can adjust this to the player’s preference.
The Ready Position is a very simple thing for players to get into and it will help them from not thinking about what they are doing, allowing them to be focused on the pitcher and the task at hand. Players should always have their eyes on the pitcher so that they know exactly when they are going to throw the ball.
There are 2 main rules for being in The Ready Position, which are:
- Feet should be shoulder width apart and on toes. Bend your knees slightly so as to not be crouching too much so that you do not tighten up and can stay loose and relaxed throughout the game.
- Bring your bat up with your one hand, keeping the other hand on your glove for control purposes. You do not want to have both hands gripping the bat as hard as you can because the harder you grip the bat, the tighter and more tense your shoulders will get which will hurt your swing if you are a hitter or damage your arm if you are a pitcher.
What is a Good Ready Position?
A good way to think of a good Ready Position is that you are at the plate and you are looking for a fastball. You will be in your Ready Position so as to not tip off what pitch you are looking for, but if the pitcher throws a curveball or any other pitch besides a fastball, you are ready to adjust since you are in a good Ready Position.
Being in the Ready Position is all about being prepared for anything that comes at you on the baseball field, which means that if the pitcher throws something other than what you were expecting, then you need to be able to react quickly.
What Are Some Common Mistakes Players Make In The Ready Position?
- Players will not be on their toes and will be standing flat-footed which does not allow players to move as quickly as possible if a play is made at first base or anywhere else on the diamond. It also decreases reaction time for any kind of play that has to do with running on the baseball field.
- Players will be tense and hold the bat too tightly which decreases reaction time and players won’t be able to get a good swing off if they do get a pitch that they like. That’s why it is important to get into a relaxed Ready Position so that you can become more of an athletic machine with better coordination and overall, play better.
- Players will be crouched down too much and their shoulders will be hunched which makes a hitter’s swing a lot slower since they are not in a good hitting position or throwing mechanics for a pitcher since they have to cock their arm back differently than if their shoulders were upright.
- Players will have both hands gripping the bat too tightly which does not allow players to transfer energy from their lower body to the bat. Their swings will look pretty but won’t have much behind it.
Some Coaches Ready Position Tips:
- Players should have their gloves on the ground so that they can get into a lower position to get your body in a better hitting and fielding position.
- Players should have their feet shoulder-width apart so that all of their weight is evenly distributed. If players are too close together, their weight will be on the inside of their feet which will make it harder for them to move in any direction. Also, if a player’s feet are too far apart, they will look lanky and too stretched out so that when a play is made at first base, they won’t be able to react as quickly since they were not prepared.
- Players should have their hands together with the bat head pointing towards the mound so that a player is ready for anything and has a proper swing path. Keeping your hands together allows players to transfer energy from their lower body to the ground, then into the bat which results in a powerful swing without too much effort expended from you as a hitter. Players that have their hands separate from one another cannot transfer energy as efficiently and will not have a powerful swing because of it.
- Players should have the inside of their foot pointed towards first base so that they can get into a good hitting position which is ultimately more comfortable for players. This allows hitters to stay on top of the baseball because they will not be leaning towards the pitcher or away from the baseball which can result in an off-balanced swing.
- Players should have their shoulders relatively level with one another so that players are ready for anything that happens on the diamond. If a player is hunched over too much, then it makes it harder to maintain weight distribution throughout the body which results in a slower swing or fielding mechanics for a pitcher.
- Players should have their knees slightly bent and their weight over the inside of their feet so that they can be more powerful when attempting to hit, field ground balls or line drives at an outfielder. With your weight over the inside of your feet and your knee bent, you have a lot of energy that can be transferred into the baseball if contact is made. If your weight was on the outside of your feet and/or your knee wasn’t bent, players wouldn’t have as much power behind their swings for sure!
Importance of Ready Position in Baseball
It is very important to be in the correct position at all times and for many reasons. If you watch a professional ball player they can sometimes be seen standing before each pitch with their bat on their shoulder, this is because it has been found that players who do this are more successful than those who don’t.
The few milliseconds that being in the ready position saves when a ball is thrown can add up to a few feet when running for a fly ball, which could be the difference between catching the ball and it going over your head.
When you are at bat, being in this position gives you more time to decide whether or not you want to swing instead of being caught off balance.
Finally, in most cases if you are in the ready position you’re less likely to get hurt by secondary leads. A secondary lead is when a player takes their front foot off of the bag but moves with the pitcher still thinking they are on the bag, only to be surprised when they don’t feel their back foot hit the base, causing them to fall forward.
I hope that you’re enjoying the Ready Position so far. It’s been a blast to write and I really hope that you have been having fun with it as well. In the next article, we will go over throwing mechanics for pitchers in The Ready Position so that they can be more efficient when pitching to players. See you then!