Next Level Catching Academy put in tremendous effort to take a previous idea and tailor it to make the competitive setting of our catchers. The planning took quite a few weeks and was well worth every minute spent to make it fair and consistent to what really matters when we hear “Play ball.”
The Events: Bunt Plays, Back-picks and Pop-times (to 2B), Pop-ups, Blocks and the fully executed blocking play. Points were based slightly different depending on the event, but a common denominator was in throwing accuracy and in beating the stop-watch (otherwise known as “the runner”).
We had very tight competition in each of the 4 groups that we were competing. Each group had its own standard based on the ages of the catchers and their ability levels. Events were balanced between rewarding points to those catchers that possess the skill and/or explosive talent, with consistency as a bonus in the Pop-time portion. That bonus went to catchers who could keep their lowest and highest pop-time within .10 seconds. Catchers had the opportunity to choose 3 out of the 4 throws to go towards their point totals.
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See just part of the day’s action below. We would like to send a special thanks Jim and Lauren Espalin for their efforts in shooting video/photography for us in that second session.