There's a time and place for everything and that includes the safety squeeze bunt. But when is it a good time to go safety squeeze, suicide squeeze or to not bunt at all?
First of all, if you are a good bunter, most managers will always have room for you on their team because a good bunt at the right time can quite often determine who wins or loses a ball game. That's a very good reason to learn how to bunt!
Unlike the suicide squeeze, with the safety squeeze the runner on third base does not commit to running until after he sees the ball hit the ground and then makes a quick decision. The disadvantage of the safety squeeze is that there are not that many efficient bunters around to make a good enough bunt to get the runner home safely. Remember, the runner from third base is not breaking for home so a pretty decent bunt is necessary.
Bunting is a little bit of a lost art and not too many players at any level of play are efficient bunters. It's highly recommended that a player learns to become efficient at bunting. Even if you are a weak hitter, there will always be situations where your manager will need you because of your bunting skill. You can possibly come in late in a game and have a major impact on your team winning the game. You may not be one of the better baseball hitters on your team but can still have a major impact on the outcome. It falls into the category of “little things" that are not little at all. You sit on the bench for two hours, come into the game and help your team win, thus becoming a major contributor. Pretty good huh?
A lot of times the safety squeeze is used with runners on both first and third base. The reasoning is that hopefully, at the very least, you will advance the runner on first base to second base and have two runners in scoring position, even if your runner on third base does not score on your bunt.
It's not recommended to put on any type of squeeze play with NO outs. Too many potentially big innings have been ruined because of one batter simply missing a bunt or popping it up into a double play and you never want one pitch to let the other team off the hook. When the other team is in a little bit of trouble, let them earn their way out of trouble and don't help them. Even if three of the weakest hitters on the planet are coming up, I would not risk the safety or the suicide squeeze with no outs.
A very good time to at the very least, consider putting on either the safety squeeze or the suicide squeeze is with one out and a couple of very weak hitters coming up.
Larry Cicchiello is the successful author of “Excellent Baseball Coaching: 30 Seconds Away. " His VERY user friendly eBooks and CD's cover 320 topics on playing very good baseball. ANY baseball player, coach or parent who wants to help their child will be fully equipped! Some FREE baseball tips on hitting and FREE baseball pitching tips are available at http://www.LarryBaseball.com .