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Top 5 Skills to Evaluate During Baseball Tryouts – A Winning Guide

Top 5 Skills to Evaluate During Baseball Tryouts – A Winning Guide

Youth Sports •

As a coach or scout, identifying the right talents is crucial for forming a winning team. In this article, we will delve into the top 5 skills to evaluate during baseball tryouts, providing you with actionable insights and expert advice to help you make informed decisions. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting, this guide will empower you to build a competitive and successful baseball team.

Top 5 Skills to Evaluate During Baseball Tryouts

In this section, we’ll explore the core skills that should be on your radar during baseball tryouts. These skills are essential for any player aspiring to excel in the sport.

1) Hitting proficiency

Standing on baseball plate

To assess a player’s hitting abilities, pay close attention to their stance, swing mechanics, and contact rate. Look for consistency in hitting the ball, as well as the ability to adjust to different pitches. Players who can consistently make solid contact are valuable assets to any team.

Techniques to increase hitting proficiency

  1. Batting stance: Practice finding a comfortable and balanced stance with your feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent.
  2. Swing mechanics: Work on a smooth and level swing path, keeping your hands close to your body during the swing.
  3. Tee drills: Use a batting tee to practice hitting balls at different locations in the strike zone to improve accuracy.
  4. Live pitching: Face live pitching from a coach or teammate to simulate game situations and practice timing.

2) Fielding skills

Fielding baseball skills

Evaluate a player’s fielding skills by observing their ability to catch, throw, and make quick decisions in the field. Look for players with good hand-eye coordination, a strong arm, and agility. A skilled fielder can save runs and turn the tide of a game.

Techniques to increase fielding skills

  1. Ground ball drills: Practice fielding ground balls by taking short hops and maintaining proper glove positioning.
  2. Catching fly balls: Work on tracking and catching fly balls while focusing on the ball’s trajectory.
  3. Quick throws: Practice fast and accurate throws to specific bases to get the ball back into play efficiently.
  4. Reaction drills: Use reaction drills to improve your ability to respond quickly to unexpected plays.

3) Speed and agility

youth baseball hit

Baseball often hinges on speed and agility. Assess players’ rates on the bases and in the field. Speedy players can steal bases, cover ground in the outfield, and turn singles into extra-base hits. Agility is equally essential, especially for infielders who need to react quickly to ground balls.

Techniques to increase speed and agility

  1. Base running: Practice stealing bases and making quick decisions on when to advance or hold your position.
  2. Ladder drills: Use agility ladder drills to improve footwork and quick lateral movements.
  3. Cone drills: Set up cones to simulate agility courses and work on changing direction rapidly.
  4. Sprinting: Incorporate sprinting drills to enhance straight-line speed on the basepaths.

4) Pitching ability

youth baseball pitch

For pitchers, focus on accuracy, velocity, and control. Analyze their pitching mechanics, including the delivery, release point, and ability to locate pitches accurately. A strong pitcher can dominate the game and keep opponents at bay.

Techniques to increase pitching ability

  1. Mechanical drills: Focus on maintaining consistent mechanics with each pitch, paying attention to your wind-up and release.
  2. Location practice: Work on hitting specific spots in the strike zone, both inside and outside.
  3. Changeup development: Develop a reliable changeup to complement your fastball and breaking pitches.
  4. Pitching sequencing: Practice choosing the right pitches for different situations and batters.

5) Baseball IQ

youth baseball catch

Baseball IQ encompasses a player’s understanding of the game, situational awareness, and decision-making skills. Observe how players react to different game situations, whether making the right play, knowing when to steal a base, or executing a sacrifice bunt. A high baseball IQ can give your team a competitive edge.

Techniques to Increase Baseball IQ

  1. Situational awareness: Study game situations and scenarios to understand when to bunt, steal, or take an extra base.
  2. Game simulation: Simulate game situations during practice, including inning, score, and base runner positions.
  3. Video analysis: Review game footage to analyze your decision-making and identify areas for improvement.
  4. Pitch recognition: Work on recognizing different pitches early to make better decisions at the plate.

Utilizing Technology: SkillShark Evaluation App

In the modern era of baseball, technology has become an invaluable tool for player and coach development. The SkillShark Evaluation App is one such tool that can revolutionize your tryout process. This app allows players to track their progress by recording and analyzing their performance in various skills.

As a coach, you can use the SkillShark Evaluation App to track, record, and compare results. It simplifies the evaluation process by providing real-time data and insights into each player’s strengths and areas for improvement. With this app, you can make data-driven decisions and identify potential in players that may not be immediately apparent.

Sports Evaluation Spreadsheets

In addition to the SkillShark Evaluation App, sports evaluation spreadsheets are another valuable resource. You can use them to input data, calculate scores, and compare players side by side.

Sports evaluation spreadsheets like our downloadable baseball evaluation form provide a structured approach to player assessment. We highly recommend the Sports Evaluation app over the spreadsheet due to its higher efficiency and user-friendliness, real-time insights, secure cloud-based storage and customization.


Evaluating skills during baseball tryouts is a critical process in building a successful team. By focusing on hitting proficiency, fielding skills, speed and agility, pitching ability, and baseball IQ, you can make informed decisions and select players who have the potential to excel on the field.

Incorporate these insights into your tryout process, and remember that a well-rounded team with players who excel in these top 5 skills will be better equipped to compete and achieve victory on the baseball diamond.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Top 5 Baseball Tryout Skills

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Q: How can I assess a player’s hitting proficiency during tryouts?

To evaluate hitting proficiency, closely observe a player’s stance, swing mechanics, and ability to make consistent solid contact with the ball.

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Q: What should I look for when assessing fielding skills?

When evaluating fielding skills, pay attention to hand-eye coordination, throwing accuracy, and a player’s ability to make quick decisions in the field.

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Q: Why is speed important in baseball tryouts?

Speed is crucial in baseball as it allows players to steal bases, cover ground in the outfield, and turn singles into extra-base hits, giving the team a competitive advantage.

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Q: What factors should I consider when evaluating pitching ability?

When assessing pitching ability, focus on accuracy, velocity, control, and the pitcher’s mechanics, including their delivery and release point.

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Q: How can I gauge a player’s baseball IQ?

To determine a player’s baseball IQ, observe how they react to various game situations, their decision-making skills, and their ability to make the right plays.

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Q: Can a player excel in all five skills?

While some players may excel in multiple skills, it’s essential to assess each skill individually, as specialization often leads to a more balanced and competitive team.

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Q: What is the SkillShark app, and how can it help in analyzing tryouts?

The SkillShark app is a powerful tool designed to streamline the evaluation process during tryouts. It allows coaches and scouts to record, analyze, and compare player performance in real-time. By inputting scores and comments directly into the app, you can quickly assess each player’s skills and make data-driven decisions.

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Q: How does the SkillShark app improve the tryout process?

The SkillShark app offers several advantages over traditional evaluation forms. Firstly, it provides instant feedback and analysis, eliminating the need for manual score calculation. Secondly, it allows coaches to access historical data, making it easier to track player progress over time. Additionally, the app offers a user-friendly interface and the ability to easily share evaluation results with fellow coaches and players.

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Q: How does the SkillShark app compare to traditional evaluation forms in baseball tryouts?

The SkillShark app offers a modern and efficient approach to evaluating players during tryouts, while traditional evaluation forms have been the conventional method for years. Let’s compare the two:

Lucy Jakoncic

Lucy is a strategy and results-driven e-commerce & digital marketer, equipped with her BBA in Business Admin & Marketing. She brings in knowledge and experience from both startup and corporate environments. Aside from her professional pursuits, Lucy is an admitted sports fanatic, she feeds her addiction through active involvement and her passion for the sport of MMA. Her sports-minded entrepreneurial spirit has been a strong addition as both a writer and marketing strategist at SkillShark Software Inc.