Baseball is a game of very few runs. This is why base runners are very important in every game. One of the easiest ways to get a runner on base is by bunting the baseball, but this requires a lot of skill, some natural ability, and knowing the correct way to bunt. The following instructions are a beginners guide on how to bunt a baseball correctly and get yourself on base to help your team win.
Before practicing bunting, a few things are needed. The most important thing is, of course, a baseball bat. Find one that is heavy enough to take the impact of a baseball, but not too heavy, it needs to be controlled easily. Next, a few baseballs will be needed as well as a machine to pitch them. If a pitching machine cannot be found, a good friend who can throw accurately can also be used. Praciting can be done anywhere, but it should be somewhere with enough room where the balls will not break anything, typically a baseball field is ideal. Batting gloves or any other type of accessory are optional.
Step 1: Stance
After getting the pitching machine set up or having the person pitching warm up their arm comes the first part of bunting, how to hold the bat and proper stance.
Start in your normal batting position. This is done as to not let the defense know you are going to bunt, making it harder for them to field your bunt and giving you a better chance of making it on base.
Step 2: Bend Knees
When the pitcher starts his motion towards home plate being pivoting, shifting your weight forward and bringing the bat around to bunt the ball.
Step 3: Shift Weight Towards the Plate
Shift most of your body weight on the toe closest to first base. Doing this gets the body moving in the right direction when trying to run to first base. Remember this is about trying to get runners on base, so the quicker you can get moving towards first, the better.
Note: Do not over do it and have too much weight shifted that you cannot contact the ball, remember that you need to hit the ball before you can run.
Step 4: Holding the Bat
Holding a baseball bat while bunting is completely different from a regular swing. After getting in the correct stance, holding the baseball bat is the next important part of bunting.
Step 5: Grip the Bat With the Left Hand
Grab the bat like you would if you were swinging it with the left hand, now move your left hand up towards the middle of the bat, typically about a third of the way up from the bottom.
Step 6: Place the Right Hand Behind the Bat
The right hand is used to control the bat. Grab the bat with the thumb and the index finger behind the bat, near the middle of the bat. Have a firm enough grip that the bat can be moved quickly.
Warning: Do not wrap the right hand too far around the bat, so as not to get your fingers hit by the baseball.
Step 7: Catch the Ball With the Bat
This is the most confusing part of bunting. When the ball has been pitched, you do not want to jab at the ball with the bat, but rather catch the ball with the bat. This allows to deaden the ball, and makes it easier to control where the ball goes.
Step 8: Placing the Ball
Direct the ball towards first or third base. This is the hardest part of bunting, placing the ball where you want it to go. Getting good at placing a baseball is a skill that takes a lot of practice. The best place to put a baseball is halfway between third or first base right on the foul line. This is the hardest part for any of the fielders to get to.
Step 9: Run!
After making contact with the ball, do not look at where the ball went or whether it is foul or not, just put your head down and run as fast as you can towards first. Remember, a bunt is always going to be a close play, so any time wasted on looking at the ball is just giving the other team more time to throw you out.
Step 10: Conclusion
Even the best bunters do not always beat out their bunts, but the best ones make it on base more times than not, making them a very large threat to other teams. With some practice, maybe one day you could be one of those threats.