This article is very broad when explaining just what it is a catcher does in a fastpitch softball game. The catcher runs the field for her defense. The catcher is supposed to call out the outs after every batter, they have to be the loudest voice on the field. The catcher needs to be heard by even center field in the case of plays. The catcher also needs to know how many strikes and balls there are against a batter, they need to know the batting technique of the batter, are they a hard hitter, are they a bunter, do they hit soft or hard ground balls, the catcher needs to know these things so that she can align and position the defensive girls in the field, especially her second baseman and outfielders. The catcher needs to be aware of her boundaries and make friends with the umpire above all else. If the catcher does not know her boundaries, she runs the risk of getting hit by the bat when it is swung and getting herself seriously injured and called out on obstruction, giving the current offensive players the ability to advance one base. For example, if the current batter hits the catcher’s glove when she swings, the catcher will be called out on obstruction, the current batter will advance to first base, and any current player’s already on the base will advance to the next.
Framing is not mentioned in this article but i definitely think it should be, given how important it is to the game. Framing is when the catcher will take the risk(something I do often) and extend her glove past her designated boundaries to catch the ball at an angle in hopes to trick the umpire into thinking it is a strike when in reality, it is a ball. This goes along the lines of making friends with the umpire. If you aggravate the umpire early in the game, they will not have a lot of thought in your favor and can make the strike zone very small and difficult for your pitcher to hit.
As described in the paragraphs above, fastpitch catchers’ do not have an easy job. They have multiple responsibilities and need to be able to focus on many things at once. Thank you for taking the time to read this informational blog post about the jobs and abilities of a fastpitch catcher.