Pre-conditioning held for PHS pitchers and catchers
By Denise Coffey - Staff Writer
Putnam - posted Tue., Mar. 22, 2011
Head Coach Brad Hall moved through the Putnam gymnasium on March 18, looking over his crew of ballplayers. During the pre-conditioning week for pitchers and catchers, Hall wants to see what he has to work with for the season. It’s his first year coaching at Putnam, and he’s excited about building a baseball program here.
“This week is vitally important,” he said. “I don’t know who we have, so I’ve got to find out.”
And he has to see the skills the players bring to the plate.
“My job is to refine what they have for skills and really put them in the best position for success,” Hall said. “It’s always about refining skills. It’s making small adjustments and refining because kids are going to have habits they’ve developed through the years playing baseball. Some are good habits, some are bad.”
Hall played baseball at Holyoke Community College in Massachusetts and coached a Canadian-American independent pro league in Pittsfield. When the head coaching position opened up in Putnam, Hall saw an opportunity. “They brought me in. I had a great interview. What I needed and what they needed matched up pretty well,” he said.
Some players performed wrist strengthening exercises. Assistant coach Greg Gallivan worked one-on-one with others. “Your fingers will be down like this,” he said, showing them how he wanted to see their hands gripping the ball. “Everybody try that,” he said. “Throw.”
And they threw back and forth, stopping mid-throw to hold the extension for a few seconds.
When a ball went crashing into the bleachers, Hall said, “We can deal with physical errors like that. But we want to stop the mental errors. If you throw to the wrong base, then we’ll talk about that,” he said. “Everything is progression.”
This will be Putnam’s first baseball season in the Constitution State Conference. “It doesn’t matter who we play,” Hall said. “We’re going to focus on what we need to do to win ball games. We’re going to put a good game plan in place, given our skill set, whatever that is. And we’re going to go forward with that. We’re going to be the team that hustles, and we’re going to force the other teams into making mistakes.”
Tryouts begin on Monday, March 21, but Hall is calling it “spring training” rather than tryouts. “We’re building a program,” he said. “If someone wants to play, that’s great.”
Head Coach Brad Hall
“There’s a lot to be excited about. There are a lot of new things here. We’re looking forward to laying the foundation of building the program. We’re looking forward to the support of the whole community.”