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Left-Handed Catchers

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  • TyrusRaymondCobb
    replied
    I coach LL and refuse to discourage any of my players if they want to try a particular position. If lefties want to have a go at catching, let them have a go at catching. If they find out they don't like it, at least they've tried it.

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  • thefeckcampaign
    replied
    If anyone has the time, I think at this point a comparison chart would be great.

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  • Brownieand45sfan
    replied
    Really. How did the "tradition/superstition" get built up so quickly when the sport was new? Same problem in rounders?

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  • Imgran
    replied
    Originally posted by Cucamongadan View Post
    This thread makes me want to read all the opinions from 1946 and earlier why it would never work to have a negro in the major leagues.

    Heh.

    I still think a lefthanded catcher would have some advantages that are easy to overlook. In theory if you have the glove on your right hand, you can square up the runner while you're recieving the ball. It seems to me that that might be a better way to not get hurt.

    Especially when you're recieving a ball thrown from right, if you're in a position to block the plate and the throw gets there a little late your whole side's exposed. Boom. Oww. And if it's not in your glove, or just in your glove, the ball probably goes for a ride while you're scraping yourself off the ground, allowing additional baserunning time. A lefty can position better since he's not reaching across his body to recieve the throw. Get his armor in the way better, line up the tag better, protect his vulnerable left leg and arm better. It's probably a safer way to handle that particular play.
    Last edited by Imgran; 10-22-2009, 12:07 PM.

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  • Cucamongadan
    replied
    This thread makes me want to read all the opinions from 1946 and earlier why it would never work to have a negro in the major leagues.

    Leave a comment:


  • Iso7x
    replied
    My little girl is a left handed catcher on her softball team.

    I.

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  • CircleChange11
    replied
    Some general comments to a lengthy thread ...

    [1] Caught my 1st game in little league because no one else could catch my overgrown cousin; used my 1st basemen's mitt. I threw 2 guys out at 2nd, and the coach protested that a person couldn't catch with non-cather's mitt. *grin* ... nest year I played 3B, including the all-star team that won its region. The only benefits to a LH catcher *might* be (a) fielding curveballs from RHPs *could* be easier since they are generally throw 'outside', which would be the to LH's gloveside ... but these balls are usually blocked, not caught. (b) picking off runners at 1B when throwing behind the runner after a pitch.

    [2] Lefties can play any IF position on routine plays, but turning double plays as a 2B would be a nightmare, as would fielding bunts as a 3B .
    and being able to "turn gloveside". We can do it as pitchers on bunts hit right as us or slightly toward the 3B line, but as a 3B it would be difficult. Any hard charging or bare-handed type play would be an automatic hit.

    [3] Lefty catcher's mitts are easier to find than one would think. I found the one I use to catch my pitchers at Dick's sporting goods.

    [4] Any corner OF position is going to have drawbacks regardless of glove hand ... especially on throws where one's body is moving away from the base one if going to throw to. LF is generally viewed as favorable to LH's because playing the line is to their "gloveside".

    [5] After throwing something like 4 consecutive shutouts (as a staff), our college coach let one practice be "ruled by pitchers". We were the only ones allowed to take ground balls, take BP, etc ... the fielder's did our normal practice stuff (run laps around the complex, long toss, etc). I got to play short and it was the most fun I think I've ever had. Turning DP's was a blast, fielding grounders and making throws from the hole is not something a LH SS could do. As with 3B, any hard charging or bare hand play requires Olympic quality gymnastic ability. Also, as a LH S, any ball up the middle would require a backhand, which is not preferable.

    [6] Lefties are generally more handsome than righties and make much better lovers.
    Last edited by CircleChange11; 08-29-2009, 08:22 PM.

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  • ipitch
    replied
    FWIW...
    total number of player seasons, from 1954 to 2009, throws LH, played 75+% of games at said position, and qualified for the league batting title...

    LF: 157
    CF: 239
    RF: 143

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    Originally posted by Imgran View Post
    Oh, I concede the disadvantages, what I have a problem with is people not being given the chance to surmount them.

    A whole category of players is dismissed without the individuals within it having a chance even in the minors to prove why they might be exceptions. The only possible place for an athletic LHT anywhere in baseball is as a center fielder. It's the only place any glove-first LHT can possibly play. That strikes me as wrong, somehow.

    I can live with it being a rare and exceptional player that can overcome the disadvantages, I can't live with the presumption that it can never happen.
    It just wouldn't be fair to that player, I think it's realized that no matter how good a glove and how strong an arm the LH thower at SS, second or third he would be really handicapped on the majority of balls hit his way.


    I use the word majority because I realize there could be some plays where the LH might be better suited than the RH thower but we have to judge on the overall picture.

    Some plays would really test him, as already pointed out bunts down the third base line, or even slow rollers to short where we see the RH thowers come in and scoop the ball and whip it to first. Imagine that play with a LH thrower.

    No one is going to be given that chance, why would any team even experiment when the disavantages of the LH thrower are so plain to see, what would be the point.

    Your speaking of LH thowers and their playing centerfield, they can and have played right and left field, not unusual. It may seem that way simply because historically there have been a greater number of RH throwers in the game.

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  • RuthMayBond
    replied
    Originally posted by Imgran View Post
    The only possible place for an athletic LHT anywhere in baseball is as a center fielder.
    I'm guessing these guys might have been a little athletic

    Ron Guidry
    George Sisler
    Rickey Henderson
    . . .

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  • Imgran
    replied
    Originally posted by SHOELESSJOE3 View Post

    Can you think of any other reason why the guys on the field, the managers, coaches, go down to midget league ball, don't use LH throwers at SS second and third base. I've given you the reason I believe they don't.
    Oh, I concede the disadvantages, what I have a problem with is people not being given the chance to surmount them.

    A whole category of players is dismissed without the individuals within it having a chance even in the minors to prove why they might be exceptions. The only possible place for an athletic LHT anywhere in baseball is as a center fielder. It's the only place any glove-first LHT can possibly play. That strikes me as wrong, somehow.

    I can live with it being a rare and exceptional player that can overcome the disadvantages, I can't live with the presumption that it can never happen.
    Last edited by Imgran; 08-28-2009, 10:28 AM.

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  • Imgran
    replied
    Originally posted by ipitch View Post
    A lefty will have some advantages over a righty at ANY position. But, at 2B, SS, and 3B the number of disadvantages outweigh the advantages.

    The difficulty of turning a 6-4-3 DP with a lefty 2B is probably one of the main reasons why there aren't any lefty 2Bs in MLB. I'm a lefty that has played 2B, and I know how difficult it is.
    I can see that. At the least you'd have to get the ball out of the glove a lot faster and it'd add a pivot that a righthander doesn't need to make and that puts more pressure on the shortstop to make a clean throw.

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  • RuthMayBond
    replied
    Originally posted by Imgran View Post
    If you want to tell me it's impossible though, as a red-blooded American I tend to bridle at that.
    I'm telling you that if you have a LHT 3B & SS on your team, they WILL be tested



    If you call a tail a leg, how many legs does a (normal) dog have?

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    Originally posted by Imgran View Post
    Well, here I am.

    I recognize that it would be more difficult for a lefty thrower to be a gold glove caliber defensive infielder at the major league level. But no lefties can play infield, or any other defensively demanding position other than CF? Really?

    Look at what the prime defensive positions around the diamond are. All of them are exclusively reserved for righthanded throwers. There is no institutional capacity to admit that even a standout exceptional wicked awesome lefthanded defender can handle those positions. That is absurd.
    Catching, throwing lefty, a long shot but I'll yield on that one, it could happen.

    Left handed throwing SS, third baseman and yes even second baseman, don't hold your breath.
    Not here to say that the RH throwers at those 3 positions are any more skilled at fielding or throwing than the LH thrower.
    Nothing to do with skill, the LH thrower is at a great disadvantage more times, thats why we don't see any, SS, third or second base.

    As RMB pointed out, imagine the LH third baseman covering bunts.............making the throw, he has to turn his body.

    What about the many ground balls to SS or third base, throw to first on close calls, and how do they get off a quick throw on a force at second base.
    I suppose I'll now hear about balls hit to the left of the SS and third baseman and the LH thrower being in a better position to throw. Simple answer we look at the routine grounders, overall the LH thrower is at disadvantage..
    Why do you think it's preferred to have a LH thowing first baseman, look at the diamond, he's often in a better position to make throws in the infield, he's opposite the side of the RH throwing third baseman.

    Can you think of any other reason why the guys on the field, the managers, coaches, go down to midget league ball, don't use LH throwers at SS second and third base. I've given you the reason I believe they don't.
    Last edited by SHOELESSJOE3; 08-28-2009, 10:20 AM.

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  • ipitch
    replied
    Originally posted by Imgran View Post
    Honstly I'd throw second base in there. Shortstops have to throw accurately mostly to their left, which means they benefit a great deal from being able to go across their bodies. Depending on the play, second basemen have to throw both ways so they might be able to develop enough to cope, and the throw to first isn't as long anyway. I don't see a huge difference between a LHT second baseman throwing to first, and a shortstop going to third, a throw they have to execute well on their arm side.
    A lefty will have some advantages over a righty at ANY position. But, at 2B, SS, and 3B the number of disadvantages outweigh the advantages.

    The difficulty of turning a 6-4-3 DP with a lefty 2B is probably one of the main reasons why there aren't any lefty 2Bs in MLB. I'm a lefty that has played 2B, and I know how difficult it is.

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