At tryouts the coach set up a pitching machine and set it up to fire ground balls. Not sure how high he had it set but it was hard. Anyone who couldn’t come up with 7/10 was told to go home. Before hand, he was hitting everybody normal speed ground balls and the majority of them getting 15/20 or around there but then after the hard hit grounders from the machine almost everyone was getting perfect. He has us do this every practice so it might be something to try if you have access to a pitching machine.
I posted this in another category—“general pitching advice”—in reply to a question about reacting to comebackers, and I thought it would apply here as well. Many years ago my pitching coach thought it would be a good idea for me to work on fielding my position, and so he got some kids, at least I thought they were kids, to be infielders and another one with a bat, and we all moved over to an unused playing field and spent a whole afternoon on PFP. One hour of this was devoted to handling the comebacker, and to this end he had me pitch to the plate—not batting practice stuff but something to hit. The batter would hit line drives back at me in every direction, and I had to move fast and spear the liners and avoid being hit by them. It was a strenuous workout, and a lot of fun besides, and I got the biggest kick out of when I would have to grab that line drive and whirl and throw to one or another base—the kind of thing pitchers are likely to encounter in games! I never had any trouble with comebackers—but I did have to buy a new glove.
Later on that day I realized something, and I said to my coach “Those guys you had out here today—they weren’t kids, were they?” He said no, they were a few of the Yankees’ second-line players, and he figured I might enjoy getting in some fielding practice with them. 8) :baseballpitcher: