Stance

All catching techniques begin with an appropriate stance. Catchers use one of three stances behind the plate: signal stance, ready stance, and comfort stance.

The signal stance is the most relaxed and comfortable. The catcher's feet are close together, heals are up and his back is near perpendicular to the ground. When giving signals to the pitcher the glove is placed outside the left knee to block the view from 3rd base. The catcher's knees should be about 18 inches apart and the signals should be placed right up against the catcher's cup.

The ready stance is designed to be mobile, not necessarily the most comfortable. The catcher's feet should be fairly wide and flat on the ground. The weight is on the balls of the feet. The angle of the catcher's back depends on the geometry and flexibility of the individual. Some catchers are more parallel the ground, others are more vertical. The key is to be athletic. The weight distribution should be balanced and the catcher should be able to move laterally, or drop quickly into a blocking position, as well as move quickly in any direction to field a bunt or pop up. The right hand should be in a loose fist with the thumb tucked in and placed behind the glove. The upper body should be free from tension with the glove set about halfway between the catcher's chest and a full arm length. The videos in this folder show a catcher going from the signal stance to the ready stance.

The comfort stance is a modification of the ready stance. It may be used when there are no base-runners and a count of less than two strikes. In the comfort stance the catcher's feet are a little less wide and he drops his right hand to his side near his ankle (never behind the back).

The catcher's stance should always enable the catcher to receive pitches with a solid foundation and allow for quick reaction to balls hit near the plate area.