How To Catch a Pop-Up In Baseball

Fly balls on the infield should be automatic outs, not an adventure. Catcher’s should become proficient at fielding all balls hit up in the air, and in their area. They can also serve as a traffic cop, alerting players to get out of the way of other fielders.

When a batter comes to the plate, you can assume that when they foul off a ball in the air, it will start off away from the hitter (right handed batter’s ball goes to the catcher’s right, left handed batter goes to the catcher’s left.) This is part of the physics of baseball.

As the ball goes into the air, the catcher must turn to direction the ball will most likely be heading (refer to the above paragraph). They should take off their mask, however do not throw it away yet. Do not run with your glove in the air. Wait to put the glove up when you are in position to make the catch.

You must take into account the direction of the wind. The spin of the baseball will bring the ball back into play (assuming their is not a heavy wind pushing it in the opposite direction). Do not camp directly under the ball. Let the ball start in front of you and come back.

When you are under the ball, throw you mask away. Make sure you are not throwing it at one of your own players. One rule of thumb can be throw it towards the opposite dugout, or warning track.

Put your glove up and make the catch. Then turn to find any runners on base. If they are off the bag, throw behind them to your defensive player.

Work hard to insure balls that are outs, remain outs. Don’t give a hitter another chance to hit.