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post #21 of 44 (permalink) Old 01-31-2011, 04:04 PM
Little Leaguer
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 5
My thoughts on this

I am new here but have been coaching for several years and have been involved on the board side of things also.

Hamstermilk I know your situation and have dealt with it every year that I coached Rec Ball on the coaching side and the Board side. Most of our teams consisted of around 12 players and a few times as many as 14. Our league requires a coach to play a full 2 innings and if they don't start a game they are supposed to start the next game for 2 consecutive innings. I know many coaches do not abide by this but there is no easy way to monitor it. The problem is your kid has never played and most of the other kids have played for several years, ther is nothing worse for a coach to have to deal with 12 or more kids but half of those do not want to be there or thier parents make them play to get them off the coach. If the kid is just starting he will be way behind but if he has the desire he can excell and somewhat catch up with the others but that will take your time (throwing or working with him every day) or some training from a professional and if he wants it he should have no problems. Also most rec leagues are very limited to when you can practice and how long you can practice. Most of the kids that really want to play and are good at it have migrated to travel ball which has exploded in the last few years. So if your kid wants to be there and has the desire help him or hire someone to help him it is amazing what some personal training can do.
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post #22 of 44 (permalink) Old 01-31-2011, 04:22 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 5
When a parent complains about the coaches let's stop a minute and ask a question? HAVE YOU EVER COACHED or volunteered to help TEACH kids anything. Many parents drop their kids off and are not heard from again until after the first game or two and their child is not getting to play. Well if they stayed and watched practice, they would see their child not paying attention, goofing off, etc. They would see their child can't catch or throw or hit the ball. They might realize they need to pay a little attention to their own child and put forth a little effort of their own in helping their child learn the basics. But they don't do that, they expect the coaches to make their child a superstar and teach them everything and never raise their voice or never correct, etc. They expect all of this from a VOLUNTEER!!! They expect all of this and then they want to go out in public and bash people for volunteering to help their child.

Don't get me wrong, I have seen many things at that park over the years that I thought was awful. Many things I do not agree with allowing to happen. I would never agree with a coach cursing a child or physically harming them. But this is not all fun! Life is not all fun. There are times they need to be fussed at and there are times that Tommy needs to realize he is not as good as Billy so Billy is going to play more. Tommy made an A on the test at school today and Billy only got a C, but there are no rules saying the teacher has to give Billy an A too. All sports teach life lessons!!! Hard work and natural ability should pay off in sports just like hard work and natural intelligence does in school and in the real world. I do feel at this age, the lessons should be taught as gently as possible. But just like bosses in the real world, some are nice and some are not. Some coaches are nice and some are not.

If you don't want your child learning these lessons and don't like the coach your child has to teach them to him. Take your child and go home and teach him something else the way you want it taught. If you just want him to “have fun”, call some of his friends and invite them over to your house to play ball.

If you want to raise him/her to think life is a bed of roses, that is your business and it will also be your responsibility to keep him up when he is an adult because you did not teach him or allow him to be taught what life is really like.
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post #23 of 44 (permalink) Old 03-21-2011, 06:25 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2
Place the emphasis on practices, not games

The stories I could tell from my 14 years of coaching two different sons spring, summer and fall in everything from Little League to select travel teams would curl your toes. Sticking with LL, the key thing is that it’s 100 percent volunteers, from the administrators to the coaches to the umpires. If a parent has a problem with issues such as playing time or practices for their kids, volunteer to see that their viewpoints are heard. LL is meant to instill certain values in children through baseball, but that doesn’t mean coaches shouldn’t be doing their best to win games. To me baseball competition is about trying to win, not just participating. It’s about finding the right opportunities for the players on their teams to achieve success and build confidence. It means I may try to get the inexperienced or less skillful player at bats or playing time early in the game or in games where the score is a bit more lopsided rather than when the game is on the line and a mistake could mean the difference between winning and losing. Once they get their sea legs and are more comfortable with baseball skills they should be given the opportunity to succeed and/or fail in more critical moments of the game. Also, the more experienced or skillful players typically get more playing time because they can often pitch and play catcher, two positions that require the most skill of them all. That said, I’ve never seen anyone improve solely by playing in games. Team practices and, more importantly, individual practicing are when a player can get the necessary repetitions to improve. A hallmark of my practices was the “double infield” approach, whereby two coaches with fungo bats standing on opposite sides of home plate hit grounders to each side of the infield, effectively doubling the number of players fielding ground balls and making throws. Practices would routinely involve 100 plus ground balls per player where coaching would occur. Similar approaches were taken for outfield practice, pitching (dual bullpens), catching etc. My goal was to get everyone as many touches and repetitions as possible in as many positions as possible. There’s nothing more frustrating or boring as a player, parent or coach than to watch nine players in the field (more with rotating positions) and one ball being hit around. However, that’s what you often get with inexperienced (e.g. volunteer) coaches. It’s also why at the LL level, in particular, volunteers are necessary to give each team enough coaches to conduct meaningful practices and the ability to work with the less skillful players on the side. As previous posters have said, many times in games several position players won’t have the ball hit their way at all. Practices are hands-down the only way to improve and earn more playing time. I understand that to the kids, playing time in games is paramount to validation, but if the ground rules are established early on, the players clearly know where they stand and what it will take to gain more playing time. Simply paying your registration fee and buying a glove is not a ticket to playing shortstop or pitcher each and every inning of every game. And one last thing about boys who complain about playing outfield instead of infield, some of the best players I’ve seen outside of shortstop are center fielders and right fielders. There are more left, right and center fielders in Cooperstown than there are second basemen, third basemen and catchers for a reason. If they’re playing outfield as they should be, they’re moving on every play to back up throws and even infield hits. They also have to know where to throw the ball after hits and fly balls to prevent the other team from taking extra bases or scoring. Simply put, it takes athletic ability and smarts to play the outfield. I’ve seldom had an outfielder insulted when I tell him that some of baseball’s top superstars have been outfielders and that he has big shoes to fill.
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post #24 of 44 (permalink) Old 03-30-2011, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamstermilk View Post
My Son is 12. He is a good kid. Athletic, good football player. Decided he wanted to try spring baseball. Somone actually told me he was a little old to start. 12 years old being too old for anything but kindergarden is about the most asinine thing I heard that week.
Anyway so he joins a team. We pay all the money, buy him all the crap he needs. Practice and work with him through the whole pre season. So now he can sit on the bench 4 out of 6 innings of every game and bat once if he is lucky. This is done so a selfish coach can win games. The team has 12 kids and the same 3 kids share all the bench time of every game.

They stopped holding practices the week games started. Half the other teams still practice but not ours. Exactly how is he suppose to learn anything without exposure to it? They knew he had no experience when they drafted him. My son loved the game when he first started. Now he looks at me and says he "Hates Baseball". I would hate it too if I spent 3 hours in a cage every game night.
How do you deal with [email protected]#ole coaches like this?

Hi, I just relized how old this post was but after reading it joined the site. If you play in a Little League then they can not do what your saying. The rules state that everyone has to play a fair amount of innings. We are even told to make sure we switch players from infield to outfield. many coaches do not do this and its un fair.

At 12U and up obvisly it gets a little more competive so the rules change, but go and ask the person who runs your league about it. If that doesn't work go to the litle league web site and read away. Good luck!
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post #25 of 44 (permalink) Old 04-06-2011, 08:15 PM
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We moved to a new town and the coach we got had it in his mind before the season started who would be playing his in-field. My son who had had very successful seasons the previous two years before was benched for most games and only played outfield. This even after the coach had asked if anyone wanted to try other positions. On top of that the coach was disciplined in a number of games for poor sportsmanship. My son had a very miserable year last year.

This year after two practices the new coach is very excited with "his find" and remarked at the incredible improvement my son has made from last year. I bit my lip hard.

...he is now looking forward to playing, and pitching, as a major this season!
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post #26 of 44 (permalink) Old 04-06-2011, 08:55 PM
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An interesting contrast was that he played football for the 1st time this year and had a fantastic season. He had a great coach that knew he had no experience but gave him a chance. My son has a great work-ethic and in partnership with this coach he got to play at quarterback.

...a new kid in a new town and he got direction from his football coach and derision from his baseball coach instead. Funny world.

Last edited by HowzitUSA; 04-06-2011 at 08:58 PM.
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post #27 of 44 (permalink) Old 04-19-2011, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by MrOffshore View Post
I have to be honest with you, I have a very difficult time believing that the above post is an actual response from an adult.
My first post is gonna be a doozy! I agree with you on your statement and would also like to add there's a reason no longer coach is no longer a coach. I've coached for yrs and watched many of your type be run out of town and agreed with it every time. If you dont wanna be a babysitter to the parents that abuse it the don't coach, plain and simple.
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post #28 of 44 (permalink) Old 04-20-2011, 02:52 AM
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I'm glad there are coaches here to help to keep this thread current! And to all you new posters here to the Forum
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post #29 of 44 (permalink) Old 04-22-2011, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by HowzitUSA View Post
We moved to a new town and the coach we got had it in his mind before the season started who would be playing his in-field. My son who had had very successful seasons the previous two years before was benched for most games and only played outfield. This even after the coach had asked if anyone wanted to try other positions.
This is the same boat we are currently in. My 11 yr old son played out of state the last 2 years. He has a natural talent, very focused and hard working. He isn't THE best player but he is very good. Our coach has 7 returning players from previous years, and that is his infield.

The coach asked what position my son played,we said he has played everything but 2nd base and outfield, and his strenghts are pitching and catching.

We've had 5 games so far and my son has played only the required 2 innings each game, in the outfield.

I spoke with the coach privately after the second game. I asked if he would give Joey a chance at practice (or even before/after) to show what he is capable of. The coach said something abaout everyone has to do their time in the outfield. Coincidently, our catcher has missed the last 2 practices so my son got to practice as catcher. The coach seemed impressed and said he did a wonderful job. Yet, the 3games since my son is still just in the outfield for 2innings.

My son is miserable and doesn't like his team. He said he just doesn't even want to try anymore and wants to quit. We explained that you just can't quit when you don't get to play the position you like. We also told him he is part of that team, he needs to give 110% everytime no matter what position he plays. I can say,so far, he has given his best.

It is so frustrating because I know what he is capable of doing but the coach has no interest in him.
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post #30 of 44 (permalink) Old 04-28-2011, 02:57 AM
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What a sad story! But I give you high marks for the talks you have had with your son. And I give him high marks for giving his best when he is miserable--that can not be an easy task at all! Is there any way he could go to another team?
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