Rockpile Rumblings Spring Training – Day 9 “OUCH”

Ouch!  Watching catchers block balls will make you appreciate the position of a catcher. When blocking balls, the catcher has to make an attempt to control the ball in front of his body and quickly find the ball and get ready to either throw a runner out or pounce on the ball to prevent the runner from advancing. At times, the ball ricochets off the plate or ground and doesn’t always hit off the chest protector. It may hit off your unprotected part of the body that never feels good. Working with catching instructor Marv Foley has truly been a pleasure. He continues to instruct, motivate and challenge the catchers. Everyday we go over a mental aspect of the game, as far as being a leader, putting on signs and being vocal so everyone on the field understands the situation. The catchers are an extension of the coaching staff. A certain aspect of a solid relationship between the manager and the catchers is vital for the team. This is the first spring that I am actually in the catchers group and I feel even after all these years, it will benefit my managing progress.
    The pitchers again continued with 40 pitches in the bullpen. They also had the wheel to work on the slide step to control the running game, the 3-6-1 double play (ground ball to 1st, throw to 2nd and the pitcher covering 1st), then worked on the wild pitch drill, covering home. At the Double A level, pitchers start to hit. In camp they work on bunting skills, slug bunts and hitting.
   We are working towards our first full squad workout and are eagerly awaiting games to start.
Until tomorrow, take time out to help someone today and don’t take any day for granted!!!
May God Bless and Never Surrender!!!
-Joe Mikulik

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