The rundown is a skill that either works really well or gives up bases in chaos. The softball throwing run down drill is a good drill to work on timing and gives the coach a way to practice the skill in a competitive environment. To complete this drill you need 8 players. It works best with 10 or more.
Softball Throwing Run Down Drill
Divide the team into 2 groups
Put a players from the defensive team at each base (including home plate)
Put 1 runners from the offensive team between first and second, second and third, and home and third.
Give the defensive player at first base the ball and have her run at the runner who is off base between third and home moving to cut the runner off from home. This produces the run down.
The player with the ball tries to prevent the runner from scoring at all costs and throws the ball to home if necessary. If she successfully turns the runner back to third then she goes at her full speed and throws the ball to the player at third in time to tag out the runner. The goal is to complete the drill with the least amount of throws.
When an out is made or a runner reaches a base, the person with the ball in hand sprints towards the runner who leads off between first and second, cutting her off from second and continuing as the first run down was executed, again with the least amount of throws possible. When the play is done between first and second base, the defense moves to the runner between second and third base.
Once the three runners have been played on, switch the offence and defense. It doesn’t matter if the players rotate around the bases because they will take part in the execution regardless of which base they are at. The defense is given points for the number of throws used to complete the play at each base. The offense scores points if they advance to the next base. The goal for the defense is to have as few points as possible. So there will be defensive points and offensive points.
The offensive team must wear helmets.