Catcher and shortstop: shadow key players
Catcher and shortstop are two of the most important positions in baseball, and they play key roles in both offence and defence. They are the “shadow key players” on a team, meaning their impact on the game is often underestimated, but they play a critical role in a team’s success.
Here are the functions of catcher and shortstop:
- Field Captain: The catcher is essentially a field captain who manages the defensive play. He calls throws to the pitcher, indicating what type of ball to throw and where the throw should be.
- Catching Balls: The catcher is responsible for catching balls thrown by the pitcher. He must be agile and have a good sense of timing to accurately catch balls and prevent runners from reaching the bases.
- Defending against base stealing: The catcher plays an important role in preventing base stealing. He may try to throw out a runner trying to steal a base at second or third base.
- Communication: He communicates with the pitcher and other infielders, providing information about runners and coordinating defensive tactics.
- Key Defensive Player: The shortstop is one of the key players in the defence. He is often the first one up after a pitcher throws and covers a lot of ground in the outfield.
- Catching Balls: He must be able to catch balls and make tags on the bases when there are outs. The shortstop often plays an important role in double plays.
- Hitting Defence: The shortstop must be prepared to defend against hits and catch fly balls when necessary.
- Offensive Orientation: Offensively, a shortstop can be a good hitter and create opportunities for his team offensively.
While catcher and shortstop are not always highlighted by spectators on the field, their roles are essential to a team’s success. They require outstanding skills and abilities in terms of defence and team play.