Home Run Derby

  Here is a fun drill baseball and softball coaches should do to end practice at a high note. I promise you every player on your team will love this! There are not many other fun games that the players like better than “Home Run Derby.”  There are many ways we play it during the year, such as with plastic bats, tennis racquets, and either hitting tennis balls or plastic balls. The following variation is the closest to the real thing. We use regular hard balls or soft balls for soft ball players. I usually wait until until the end of the season when I keep one bucket of used balls separated from good practice balls that may be water logged or just heavy and scuffed from use. In youth baseball and softball, most players will never experience the thrill of hitting a ball over the fence for a home run. Why not give all players on your team an opportunity and make it as realistic as possible? I run this drill in a way to give players a chance to hit a home run or ball over the fence according to their age. Between the pitcher’s mound two loose bases are set up that represent home plate. Second base will represent a third home plate. If a movable “L” screen is available, it is highly recommended for the coach to use when pitching. Each player will line up at one of the home plates according to age. The home plate closest to the outfield is for 10 year-olds. The home plate in the middle is for 11 year-olds and the other home plate furthest from the fence is for 12 year-olds. A great teaching point, even in this drill, is that when you try to go for home runs, usually it does not happen. You can dive the players into 2 teams and can have a competition or game. You can also have your best hitters try switch hitting. Player love to see their ball go over the fence. From all my drills in my video The 59 Minute Baseball Practice and my book Baseball Coaching, this game was one of the top 5 the players loved!  This is an excellent practice ending activity that will have all your players feeling good about themselves and their practice.

Related Resources:
Backyard Baseball Drills

Baseball Coaching: A Guide For The Youth Coach & Parent

The 59 Minute Baseball Practice

Baserunning & Bunting Drill (video)

Winning Baseball Strategies (video)

Hitting Drill & Techniques (video)

44 Baseball & Softball Mistakes & Corrections (book)

T-Ball Skills & Drills (video)

T-Ball Skills & Drills (bk)

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Keyword: Schupak Sports