Baseball has six categories of instruction; hitting, base-running, pitching, infield, outfield, and catching, with the number of players involved also in that order.

A major league organization supports six-eight teams, totaling over 100 pitchers, (hopefully)100 hitters, of which, about 50 infielders, probably 35 outfielders and maybe 18 catchers, throughout their minor league system. So, a pitching coach and a hitting coach per team is common due to the number of players to coach. Together, they will instruct every player.

Catching is different. It requires a completely different skill set. Many organizations will deploy a “roving coach” for catchers since there are too few catchers at one location. During the season, the coach may travel to each team. During the off-season and spring training, catchers will travel to the training site.

Much of the catcher’s training time is spent (and sometimes wasted) in the bullpen, catering to the pitcher. With a coordinated bullpen plan, a catcher can get valuable training and instruction too. Beyond that, catchers should be coached on the skills and drills of: receiving, blocking, throwing and fielding.  It should be as intense and specific (and different) as it is for the infielders and outfielders.

But, it is rare that catchers receive the same level of instruction. This problem is common and largely due to the coach’s expertise and allotted practice time. But in the game, the catcher becomes a prominent player…every pitch, every game. 

Amateur baseball organizations should consider the “roving coach” concept for catchers across their teams and age groups during their off-season training and perhaps during the season. Practice your catchers (and team coaches) together separately from their teams. Have a catcher coach teach proper catching techniques.

I suggest that baseball/softball organizations (little leagues, recreation councils, amateur groups, etc.) adopt a standard for teaching their young catchers; from ages 6-7 to 12 and up. In doing so, you have an instructional path for your catchers and have provided the tools for your coaches.