This time of year everyone is thinking about recruiting. Colorado has become the hub of all things softball for a couple of weeks each year because so many players and parents are hoping to be seen by college coaches. College coaches come out is great numbers to evaluate and find the players who will make up their future rosters.
Over the years, I’ve done dozens of recruiting seminars and have tried to share some of what I have learned with softball players and their families as they embark on this process.
There are many things that I hope these players and families will take away from these sessions but none is more important that what I call “The 14 Commandments.”
What are the Commandments supposed to accomplish? To help the next wave of potential softball players avoid making the same mistakes others have made.
#12. Throwing and Catching!
The most fundamental part of playing our game at a high level is too often an afterthought for many players. Most players think of throwing and catching the ball as a warm-up activity rather than a skill that needs to be practiced with the same level of focus as hitting or pitching.
Very few players who are poor throwers get recruited. That doesn’t mean you have to have a bazooka hanging off your shoulder, but a weak thrower must have another very impactful skill to offset their weak arm
Over the course of my coaching career I recruited exactly one player who I knew going in was a very poor thrower. She had arm problems which lead to very poor mechanics and a VERY weak arm. The good news was that her arm problems didn’t negatively impact her swing and I got used to the fact that she couldn’t throw anyone out from left field because she was hitting about 15 homers a year!
Sloppy or careless in throwing sends a very negative message in the recruiting process. Throw with a purpose. Catch the ball like it’s important to you and you will make a much better impression.
Work on these skills, please!
About the Author: Tory Acheson brings a wealth of knowledge to the Fastpitch Prep staff. He has coached at all levels of the game, including the last 25 years at the college level at the University of Wisconsin – Parkside, Tennessee Tech and Kennesaw State. He began his coaching career at the high school level spending 9 years Whitnall High School in Greenfield, Wis. and is now working as a professional softball instructor.