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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2013, 08:52 PM Thread Starter
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Left Handed High School Catching

Hello everyone!
I am a 15 year old freshmen in high school up in Maine, and I play Baseball (of course). I hit and throw left, and I have been getting some mixed opinions from online, as well as some JV and Varsity players at my school on the subject matter of being left handed and playing catcher. I thought I'd ask for a second opinion, hopefully, from some high school level and up coaches regarding the subject.

I have played since I was 6 years of age, and I played for my local recreational team, as well as two summers of a All-Star league. I spent the majority of my time on the diamond behind the plate both on my recreational team and All-Star league until two years ago when I experienced pain in my throwing elbow, and was diagnosed with OCD elbow. I had to sit out for two years, and I was given the okay by my doctor a few months ago, and I have been participating in after school pre-season workouts with my fellow classmates. I wanted to refresh my memory and try to learn more about playing catcher that my previous coaches may not had taught me, and I noticed that there was nothing mentioning that lefties caught at the high school and college level, let alone the major leagues.

My question is, should I stick with wanting to play behind the plate and invest in gear that better fits me, or should I think about playing elsewhere such as first base? I just want to be sure that I don't waste three to four years of high school playing a position that I will not be able to play when I carry on my Baseball career into college. It makes more sense to become solid and comfortable at a position that I will be able to play when I move on to college ball.


Thank you for reading and I greatly appreciate any reply!

-Elliot
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-19-2013, 06:32 PM
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Being a left-handed catcher is like being a right-handed first baseman. It's not going to be something that plagues you greatly, but lefties at first base are going to have the advantage is some situations. In your case, it's the righties who have the advantage.

I've been playing baseball for all my life, and Travel Ball as well. I've been on about 10 different travel ball teams, and I have seen one left handed catcher. However, that kid was a stud. His being of a lefty didn't effect him the least, and the coach let him do it. It really comes down to being the best, better than a righty. If you're as good as one, the coach will likely pick the righty.. but if you're better, he'll pick you without a doubt.

With that being said, some coaches prefer left handed catchers. Lefties do have the advantage in some cases, such as throwing down to third.

There's been countless numbers of left-handed catchers, the two that come to my head are Benny Distefano and Mike Squires.

It's nothing to be that worried over if you really love the catcher posisition. You should follow what you want to do, not follow what the coaches and other people tell you to do because of your being of a lefty. In college, you'll be able to play catcher as long as you're good enough. It doesn't matter if you are a right-handed catcher or left-handed.. it all comes down to being good enough.

With that being said, you are the judge of yourself. So you have to decide if you have the potential to be better than anyone who comes along as a catcher.

If you think you aren't good enough, I would highly advise switching to 1st base. However, if you can hit and field very good, I would say stick with catcher.

If you have elbow-problems still, I would just suggest moving to first base. I know it'll be hard.. but if you continue to have that problem in your elbow, you'll be fried by college, let alone the Big Leagues. But if your elbow is getting better by the day, stick with catching.

Hope I answered your question clearly enough. If not, let me know.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-19-2013, 06:33 PM
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I would suggest reading this to know the difficulties you'll have as a lefty. You shouldn't let this get you down, however.
Top 10 Left-Handed Catchers for 2006


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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-19-2013, 06:35 PM
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And hey, look at it this way: This is your chance to make history in the game of baseball. If I were you I'd stick with catcher just to prove everybody wrong.


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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-19-2013, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you very much for the reply, Kelzzy! I completely agree with you with your statement on proving everyone wrong. But, with the possibility of being outplayed by another catcher who is right handed, along with a good chance of coaches being biased against lefty catchers isn't very reassuring. I want to make sure I am comfortable and confident in my decision so that I do not waste time playing a position that I won't have a chance to play when I leave high school.

Your reply has reassured me, and I am definitely feeling a little more relief about the whole situation.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-20-2013, 02:50 AM
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In the levels of high school and up, you're not going to find a lot of biased coaches unless you live in a small town. Even then it's going to be a professional situation most of the time. I would highly, highly doubt a coach would be biased against you just because you're a lefty. If he's a good coach, he'll actually want to help you. Because that's what coaches are for. To help, not to pick at. Know what I'm saying?

I can almost gurantee a college will be fine having you on your team as a left-handed catcher. I wouldn't doubt they're going to ask you a load of questions like "How come you chose catcher?", or "Why are you a left-handed catcher?" or "Why don't you play first base?" etc.. don't worry though, it's just questions, not actions. Like I said, if you're good enough, you can play wherever you want. If you're good enough at the game, you can be a left-handed third baseman for all the coach cares. Just make sure you pull the numbers. So don't be worried about be outplayed because of your being of a lefty. Man, the only thing that will get you outplayed is the numbers. Numbers numbers numbers.. that's all that matters. Not if you're lefty or righty, nope. It's the numbers.


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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2013, 12:28 AM
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good luck with the baseball training.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2013, 08:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you, hatreserve.

I contacted my doctor to get an opinion on whether I should be putting the amount of strain on my elbow that playing catcher requires, so when I hear back from him I will know where I will be playing for sure.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2013, 12:45 PM
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if you have aspirations of going d1 then pro I say look at becoming a reliever or closer as you will get much more serious looks at that position than catcher. Catchers require a strong accurate arm and economically left handed players with an arm that strong accurate are more valuable as pitchers than catcher. If you turn out to be a good catcher and go to the next level there is a high probability that you will be picked up with the intention of being turned into a reliever. But if you turn out to be really good then you could end up being a catcher. However if you have elbow problems you obviously be a first baseman and follow in the footsteps of Scott Hatteberg

Best of luck to you

Last edited by Conman; 04-09-2013 at 01:03 PM.
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