The coach will usually give the catcher the pitch out sign, but sometimes the catcher will call it on his own. The pitch out can be used:
1. In a suspected squeeze situation
2. When there is a likely steal or hit and run play on
3. In conjunction with various pick off plays
Be careful not to overuse the pitch out since it puts the pitcher behind in the count. The best times to call a pitch out is:
1. When you have stolen an opponents signs.
2. On the 1st pitch to a hitter, or on a 0-1, 1-1, or 1-2 count.
In the squeeze, steal, or hit and run situation, the pitcher should pitch from the set position and hold the runner slightly longer to ruin his take-off timing. The pitch should be delivered with a quick motion eliminating the high knee lift. The pitch should be a fast ball thrown at 90-95% velocity, and thrown chest to head high to the catcher about 2 feet out of the strike zone, and away form the hitter. On a pitch-out, infielders must anticipate that the ball could be hit, but the pitch out should allow them an early hard break to their cover responsibilities.
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