Throwing from the Outfield
Unlike infielders, when outfielders throw to get a runner out, they usually do not have time to throw less than full strength to their target. While making strong accurate throws is an important part of an outfielder's game, be mindful that for every step you take, the runner is taking one as well. Nothing travels faster than the ball, so while being strong and on target is important, so too is getting rid of the ball quickly.
The Crow Hop
- For a right-handed thrower (lefty would be opposite), the ball should be caught or fielded with the left foot slightly in front of the right foot.
- As the ball enters the glove, the right foot should come forward and land while the left side of the player's body closes, allowing the outfielder to gather himself for the throw.
- The distance and height of the crow hop step is an individual matter but must take into consideration the amount of momentum the outfielder has generated.
- The left leg, or stride leg, should then come around to stride directly toward the target.
- With the right leg as the explosive driving force, and the left leg acting as the brake, the fielder should release the ball high over his head.
- Always use the four-seam grip. Throwing the ball with the four-seam grip not only ensures a straighter flight path but also adds three-to-four mph on your throw.
- Throw overhand with full arm extension. Throwing the ball overhand and on a line makes it easier for cut-off men to catch and throw to the bag. Do not throw side-arm.
- Always throw through your cut-off man's head on a line. Leave the decision-making to the infielders. If the cut-off man needs to cut it, the throw should be there for him.