Friday, January 13, 2012

Good Baseball Bunting Techniques

Late in a close game, a manager or coach in a baseball game may choose to have a batter lay down a sacrifice bunt so the runners on base can move and get in a better position to score. A batter can also choose to bunt for a base hit. Bunting is a skill that needs to be practiced regularly to build competence.
Step 1
Take your normal stance in the batter's box. As the pitcher goes into his windup, square your body to the pitcher's mound. Slide your top hand up the barrel of the bat until it is at the midway point. Hold the bat at chest level as you prepare to put the barrel of the bat on the incoming pitch.
Step 2
Deaden the ball as the bat makes contact with it. Hitting coaches instruct batters to "catch the ball with the bat." As the pitch comes in, you will slightly pull back with the bat as contact is made. This will keep the baseball from rebounding hard off the bat. You don't want the ball to get to the fielder quickly. You want the ball to stop rolling 30 to 40 feet from home plate, and this deadening action will help you accomplish that.
Step 3
Push or pull with your bottom hand to impact the direction the bunt travels. If you are a right-handed batter, pull the handle in to angle the bat so the ball goes down the third-base line. Push the handle further away to have the ball move down the first-base line. You want to angle the bat in one of these two directions because you don't want the ball to go toward the pitcher. The pitcher has a better chance of getting to the ball and throwing it to second or third and preventing the sacrifice.
Step 4
Assess the infielders' positions when you go to the plate and you are planning to bunt for a base hit. If you see the third baseman behind third base, you have a good chance of laying down a bunt for a base hit down the third-base line. Do the same down the first-base line if you see the first baseman is deep behind the base. Disguise your bunt until the last minute by not changing your stance until the pitch is on its way toward home plate.

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