Being a catcher at any level is not all it is hyped up to be. It requires many responsibilities and little glory. But if you’re up to taking on these responsibilities, you are on your way to becoming great at one of the hardest positions on the diamond.
If you’re already a catcher, you know that it’s not about you. You touch the ball as much as a pitcher, but most of the time you’re barely noticed and that is okay! As a baseball catcher, you have one primary responsibility, make the pitcher look good. In almost every instance of every game, the pitcher will get all the credit and that is something you must accept as a catcher. If the pitcher looks good after everything is said and done, that simply means you, as a catcher, did your job!
Let Nothing By You
This is a big one. You are the only position on the field with gear on, use it! You must use your body as a shield and do everything you can to stop the ball!
Have a High Pain Threshold
Just because you have gear on, doesn’t mean your completely protected from injury. As a catcher, you will take foul balls off every part of your body, batters will hit you on the back swing, wild pitches will find you where your gear isn’t. You’ll dive, leap, and collide with runners.
All in all, you will leave the game with the most bumps and bruises. But this is in your job description and you must wear every foul ball, collision, bump and bruise with honor.
Keep the Umpire Happy
Umpires are human, and you’d be surprised at how your actions can impact borderline calls. Umpires are your friends and the way you act towards them can help you and your pitcher out.
As a catcher, introduce yourself, ask him about his job, and his family. When the umpire takes a foul ball, call time! Ask him if he is okay, he’s human! The little things matter.
Be a Leader
Every team needs a good leader, in every sport. As a catcher, you need to be a positive force. When your pitcher is struggling, it is your job to uplift him, and steer him to the finish line.
Be vocal! As a baseball catcher or a softball catcher you are behind the plate and have a great view of any play. Make sure you are vocal and expressing where to throw the ball, where the play is at, EVERYTHING!
I think we can all agree the life of a catcher definitely isn’t glamorous or one to lust over. It is dirty, difficult, and painful. But with every successful team, there is an elite catcher behind the dish.