Baseball Magazine

Code Words for Second Base

By Meachrm @BaseballBTYard

One of the challenges for base stealers and third base coaches is the fact that middle infielders can hear.  

When a base stealer is at second base and wants/needs to steal third base, often he will need the third base coach to give him information on what the middle infielders (especially the shortstop who is behind

Some code words can come in handy right about now

Some code words can come in handy right about now

him) are doing.  That information can help the runner get some extra steps on his lead which might be the difference between out and safe on the steal attempt.  But as I said above, middle infielders have ears.  If a coach says any variation of “you’re fine” when the runner takes his lead, the middle infielders will hear that and probably decide to get involved to keep the runner a little closer to second base.  Because of that, a little stealth can go a long way.  Here is an example.

Instead of saying “you’re fine,” a coach could say “shortstop” or “watch” instead.  The runner knows that those words really mean “you’re fine” but the shortstop probably will translate that to mean “be careful of the shortstop.”  If he thinks that is what the coach is saying, he is likely to just stay where he is and not try to keep the runner closer.  The coach’s words make the shortstop secure in his current location.

There are other examples but the point is to create your own code that your runners at second base will understand but the defenders will not.

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