My 9yo son is playing kid pitch baseball this season. I don’t have my parent blinders on, so I know he’s not the best kid on the team, but I’m happy he’s in the upper 10%. I’m happiest though that he has a great outlook by getting to play and having fun.
The kids had a terrible loss the other night, mainly because they gave up, got frustrated, and acted more like 3yo rugrats than 9-12yo boys. One of them was walking back and forth in the dugout saying, “Shit!” over and over. After the game, this kid got a bat and was swinging it around crazy mumbling to himself. Another kid got mad and threw his glove down on the field. Most of the other kids were crying and grumbling. At their last chance to bring the score up, my son got a single and the next batter hit him in for a run. No one cheered.
Needless to say, the coach had a serious pep talk for them after the game. I liked when he said, “At this age, baseball for you is more about learning how to play than about winning.” He told them they needed to be more concerned about having fun than getting upset about bad plays and losing a game.
Good words, but it got me to thinking.
You see, the two coaches stack the infield and the pitching rotation with their kids and the all-stars from last year. They send the players they don’t know well or who aren’t that good into the outfield or those kids rotate the bench. My son ends up being one of these kids. The coaches refuse to let them practice or play in the infield or pitcher positions.
But isn’t it about fun and learning more than winning?
So I told my son to test him at the next practice. Ask him if he can practice infield or pitch some balls in batting practice. Ask him if the other kids can play a few innings here and there in the infield or as a relief pitcher in a real game.
Let’s see if the coach really cares about winning more than teaching.
This message was written by Dr. David Powers. You can always find me at www.drdavidpowers.com. Thanks for reading!