How to Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball

Whether you are just looking for a new position to play or you are brushing up on tips, this helpful guide will provide you with everything you need to know to play first base in a fast pitch softball league. First Base is a great position to play.


  1. Image titled Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball Step 1
    Get a first base glove or a regular infield glove. It would be great if it was already broken in.
  2. Image titled Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball Step 2
    Stand about 4-5 steps in front of the base, depending on how fast you can get back to the base. Also be around two feet from the baseline.
  3. Image titled Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball Step 3
    Stand in your position, knees bent and glove in grounding position or out in front of you when the batter is in the batter's box.
  4. Image titled Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball Step 4
    After every hit (if the ball is not coming to you) run to the base and put your stronger foot on the white bag and reach towards the player throwing the ball at you. Catch it and that's one out. (Remember, always put the foot opposite your catching hand on the bag. This will allow you to reach further and get that good first-baseman stretch.)
  5. Image titled Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball Step 5
    After every pitch if there is a batter on base, run back to the base and look at the catcher to expect a throw. Once the ball is in the pitcher's hand you can return to your position.
  6. Image titled Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball Step 6
    Watch out for bunts. The third baseman, pitcher, and you must run up to get the ball. If you get it, throw it to first where your second baseman should be covering. If the third baseman or pitcher gets it, duck.
  7. Image titled Play First Base in Fast Pitch Softball Step 7
    Take charge on pop flies. If you know that you can get the ball for sure, yell "I GOT IT!!!!!" loud and repeatedly. Your second baseman should back off. If you hear your second baseman yell "got it", back them up. If nobody says anything, well, that shouldn't happen.


  • Wait to stretch until the ball is thrown. If if is off to the side, you'll be able to reach to make the catch.
  • If you're on the bag ready to make a play and the ball is overthrown, you'd better run as fast as you can to get it! Throw it to the pitcher, not second base. Hopefully you have a good right fielder who should be backing you up.
  • You must always stand on the white bag (base) to make the play! The orange one is for the runner.
  • Always expect the ball is coming to you. Think about what you would do with it.
  • If you're on the bag again to make a play and the ball is thrown awkwardly (to your left or right so much that you would have to step off the bag), then you'd better step off it! Catching the ball to prevent it from being overthrown makes so much more sense than letting it be overthrown.
  • If the ball is hit near you, go for it. Once somebody calls you off, head back to the base.
  • Tell your coach ahead of time that you are interested in playing first base. He/she will put you there in practice to see how you do.
  • If you are just starting fast pitch, play an outfield position and watch your team and first baseman. First base is a tough position and a good way to learn is by watching your team and talking to your first baseman in practice.
  • When the ball is pitched and your catcher misses it, run in behind your pitcher to back him or her up especially if there is somebody on third.


  • Some umpires require the players to tuck in your jersey shirts. This is also for safety reasons because you could scrape up your back when you slide.
  • Do not wear any jewelry. It isn't even allowed on the field. The umpire will tell you to take it off or you will not play.
  • Fast pitch is a lot different than slow pitch. Not only do they pitch faster, they run harder, to the ball and to the base. The game involves sliding, diving, the throwing of large, hard balls, the swinging of metal bats, and possibly playing in hot weather. Make sure you have all the necessary safety equipment to play the game. See below.

Things You'll Need

  • First base/infielder's glove
  • Batting helmet with face mask
  • Leg slider
  • Compression/padded shorts
  • Cleats.Rubber or metal, find out what is allowed. in your league. Usually it's only rubber allowed
  • Batting gloves
  • Metal fast pitch softball bat
  • Visor/Hat/Sunglasses (very good idea to have all three)
  • Sunblock
  • Sunflower seeds
  • A softball bag is incredibly useful

Sources and Citations

Article Info

Categories: Softball