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- Taking a called third strike, especially with runners in scoring position. Probably the thing that aggravates me the most as a coach.
- Missing a sign from a coach.
- Swinging at the first pitch when the previous batter walked on four pitches. Poor awareness of what is happening around you.
- Getting picked off when the steal sign is not on. Where are you going?
- Getting picked off on a hit-and-run play. The priority is for the batter to put the ball in play, not for you to steal the base.
- Missing a base. Inexcusable at any level.
- Taking a fast ball down the middle with runners in scoring position. The next top thing that aggravates me the most.
- Taking a first pitch strike on a fat fastball down the middle with runners on. You send a very clear message that you were not ready to hit when you walk into the batter's box.
- Trying to base-hit bunt after getting the sacrifice bunt sign. This will get you a quick trip down the end of the bench. It's called a "sacrifice" for a reason.
- Just reaching first base on a dropped fly ball in the outfield. This will get you a quicker trip down the end of the bench.
- Forgetting how many outs there are on the bases. Ask an ump or a coach if you don't know.
- Trying to get to third base and getting thrown out on a ball hit to the shortstop. Force him to make that long throw to first base. If you stay at second base, you're still in scoring position.
- Running into a tag with two outs instead of forcing the fielder to throw to first base. Stop and make him throw the ball! An accurate throw is much tougher than simply tagging you.
- Two outs on two pitches and the next batter swings at the first pitch. The coach should tell you to take at least one pitch but if not, you do it.
- Down by a bunch of runs and the batter swings at the first strike. There is no such thing as a six-run homerun.
Tomorrow: Cardinal sins of pitching