- "Expect the ball to be hit to me on every pitch". This basically means that they need to be ready and expect the ball. Easier said than done! Often kids who play in the outfield get bored because they may not get many balls hit to them, especially if there is a good pitcher on the mound. So how do you keep them in the game and ready?
- Help them develop a pre-pitch routine that involves movement. As the pitcher starts his motion, they should be moving and getting into a position where they are ready to move as the ball crosses the plate.
- Communication. Get your outfielders talking to each other. They should be saying how many outs, what's the count. Where to throw the ball on a base hit. Where to throw it on a fly ball.
- Empower them and expect them to adjust where they play based on the hitter. How many times does a big hitter step up to the plate and the coaches are yelling to the outfield to get back or a bottom of the order hitter comes up and you move them in. Try your best to get them to make those adjustments. If you expect them to adjust based on the pitcher, where the opposing team is in the lineup, what the batter did last time up, then your are forcing them to focus and think. It keeps them in the game and gets them thinking about where the ball would most likely be hit by each batter.