Baseball Coaching Tools – Coach’s Bag
All coaches need a coach’s bag. Most don’t realize that they already have one though. It is one of the most important baseball coaching tools. The coach’s
bag is full of everything you need to teach baseball on the field. You bring it to every practice and every game. Every coach should make one. If you haven’t, what are you waiting for?
This article will give you an idea of what you need to be prepared to coach. All these things make up the staples of the coach’s bag.
What’s in the baseball coaching tools – coach’s bag?
This is a list of the basic items that make up my coach’s bag. You may find that you don’t need some of the items or you may want to add others. It is your bag so customize it to meet your needs.
- Fungo Bat (Don’t leave home without it)
- Wiffle balls
- Batting Tee (must have at every level)
- Field cones
- Glove (best tool for self-defense)
- Dry erase line-up board/note board
- Training paddle glove
- a few indoor balls (soft core t-balls)
- a few new baseballs
- First aid kit (might be provided by the league but you have to have it, get extra ice packs)
- Athletic tape (used for everything from bumps and bruises to fixing broken shoelaces)
- Pens / pencils
- Notepad (small pocket size for taking notes during practice. Great for good post practice or post game speeches)
- Scorebook or scorekeeping app for a phone. (See batting out of order in Little League rules post)
- Pitch counter
- Water cooler
- Collapsable pitching screen/hitting net
- Pitching machine.
I know that is quite a list but you have to remember that I have been coaching for 28 years. Some of these items are must haves and others you can acquire as you see need over time.
Why you need this?
The items at the top of the list are must have items. Some things may be provided to you by the organization you are coaching for. Some items you may have to go get yourself.
A first aid kit, game balls and practice balls should all be provided for you by the organization that you are coaching for. If they are not going to provide these things you should look for a new organization to associate yourself with. These items you can’t practice without.
Add on your own
You will probably have to get your own fungo bat, Wiffle balls, batting tee, field cones, training paddle glove and pitch counter. These items are important on-field baseball coaching tools. When it comes time to set up a drill during practice or getting ready for a game you don’t want to start hunting for the items you need to get the job done properly. Efficiency is a sign of a great coach.
Some of the other things on the list like a glove, pens, pencils, sharpies, and a notepad you may already have at your house. Athletic tape is everywhere. Pick up multiple rolls.
A dry erase line-up/note board is a great tool to have in the dugout you can post the line-up before the game so everyone knows where they are playing and where they are hitting. I like to write something inspirational on the note side so the players get a little fired up.
Indoor balls are very useful if you are going to have practice time in a gym or place where the hard real baseball if going to be frowned upon. Having a half dozen or so on hand for random drills is a good idea as well.
When you are practicing your players are working hard. You need to make sure they are hydrated. I prefer that all the players bring their own water but sometimes you have a couple of players that forget. Having a team water container is a good thing. Just make sure you keep it clean.
The Big Stuff
When it comes to the collapsible nets, I prefer to have my own for outdoor practice. Some fields or
organizations will provide them but not very often. As the kids you coach get older you are going to want the protection that a pitching screen provides. The hitting net is a really nice tool to have right from T-ball. Being able to have a player working on their swing off to the side during practice is a great way to keep players involved and productive. Don’t forget the tee.
If you are a coach that has a hard time throwing batting practice strikes you might want to invest in a pitching machine. They are incredibly diverse. Some are simple lever mechanisms. Others need to be plugged in and can do other things besides pitch baseballs.
The last thing I am going to go over from the list is the scorebook. You must keep track of the score during the game. If it is you personally or a parent in the stands make sure you do this. The rules of baseball are such that you have to keep track of things like the batting order or things can get really confusing.
Where do you get all these items?
There are items on the list that are pretty easy to find. First aid kits and athletic tape you can get at any drugstore or sporting goods store. Other items on the list are a little more challenging such as fungo bats and training gloves, both are items that you may have never seen or heard of until you took on the coaching challenge.
Whether you are looking for a new fungo or a pitching machine you can check out the Product Reviews on Hitting With Wood. We review a lot of different equipment to make sure that we recommend only the best for you. Most of the time we will give multiple options based on different price points. We want you to get what you need. No sense in spending $2,000 on a pitching machine for an eight-year-old team if you are not going to coach again.
Portable in the end
You are going to bring your bag with you to practice and to games. I have a bag that has my game items and a bag for practice. I use a gym bag to carry all my practice items. Most of the collapsible nets will come with a carry bag and a couple of velcro straps make carrying a tee easy.
Therefore when you are setting up at your next practice it will be comforting to know that everything you need for practice is ready to go. Due to the cost of these items, you will want to be sure to collect them at the end of every practice or game. The cost of the tools in your coach’s bag will be offset by the number of years you use them and the countless players that will benefit from your time and effort.