One of the first things you should do to teach younger players how to field properly is to get them in front of the ball.
What you need: Gloves and balls. Two pylons about 10’ apart.
How this drill works: Explain to the kids that they cannot let the ball get past them and cross the imaginary line between the two pylons. You (coach) will roll, or bounce the ball towards the player in an attempt to get the ball past them. Instruct them on how to shuffle from side to side with their glove in front of them to get their entire body in front of the ball.
You will probably have a few players who don’t want to get in front of the ball because they fear it will hurt them. This is completely normal for players at a younger age. If you want, try the drill with soft baseballs (for T-ball level) or with tennis balls – just to get the kids used to getting hit.
Results: Players need to learn at an early age how to shuffle their feet to get in position for the ball. This drill, keeping them between the pylons will help them gain range in their shuffle and help them learn to keep the ball in front of them.