5 Tools are core athletic skills required to be successful
in the game of baseball. Varying
in importance by position, these tools are critical components
of an individual player's make-up.
RUNNING SPEED. Speed is the
most "innate" (genetically predisposed) of the 5 Tools.
It is possible to enhance a ballplayer's speed, but substantial
gains are dependent upon the athlete himself. Players with speed
are counted on to make things happen and are catalysts both offensively
and defensively in the game of baseball. Scouts look at speed, and
know that if a player has it he is well on the way to becoming a
5 Tool player. iPB instructors work to improve running speed by
improving form, efficiency of movement and first-step quickness.
ARM STRENGTH. Arm strength
is often rated as the "least important" of the 5 Tools,
but arm strength can be a lethal weapon in any defensive position.
Along with arm strength, muscle endurance is an often overlooked
area for baseball players. Pitchers realize the importance of muscle
endurance - being able to throw hundreds of pitches weekly - but
what about the shortstop who needs to make plays day in and day
out, or the outfielder looking to gun down a baserunner at the plate?
Arm strength AND endurance are two critical areas emphasized by
HITTING FOR AVERAGE. Lets
face it, to score runs you need baserunners. Good hitters hit for
average first and power second. Hitting for average requires the
ability to hit to all fields and assess defensive situations - knowing
when to hit to the right side, when to bunt, or being able to make
contact when the hit and run is on. Hitting for average requires
good decision-making ability and good pitch selection at the plate,
foundational skills that are highly emphasized by iPB instructors.
HITTING FOR POWER. The most
obvious benefit of this Tool is that extra base hits increase a
team's chances of scoring. Power hitters also add an intimidation
factor. Barry Bonds drew
a record 198 walks in 2002,
taking his on-base percentage to over 500. Power hitters have recently
emerged because athletes recognize the importance of strength and
conditioning programs, and the fact that power hitters generally
demand the best contracts. Home runs and doubles off the wall are
a fan, and scout, favorite. iPB instructors work to refine the athlete's
swing and maximize his physical abilities to hit the long ball.
FIELDING. Scouts will often
say a player has "good hands." In reality, good hands
- or good fielding position - is the result of a number of factors
working together that make difficult plays look simple. Middle infielders,
catchers, and outfielders must have the defensive skills required
to take away base hits, know how to "read" a hitter, and
know how to react and position themselves for the best chance for
success. iPB's fielding instructors start with the basics and work
to develop a functional approach to fielding fundamentals at all
of Importance by position as recognized by professional scouts.
use professional scouts and the PRO Scouting Scale
when evaluating a player. All player information is submitted
to USA Baseball for possible National Team consideration. Our
goal is to improve each athlete in all 5 Tools to take your game
to the next level.
iPB projects a player's ability and potential based on
what the athlete shows at our events or from a private
evaluation. This scale becomes an important tool in the
iPB player database as it allows direct and consistent
player communication to USA Baseball and professional
organizations. To our players, this scale represents a
goal that allows specific focus to improve their game
and chances of success.