My son is in his first year of baseball. He just turned 10. He has played flag football for the last several years and, I must say, is pretty good. Being a huge fan of football (and I enjoy coaching), I wanted him to play this season. Unfortunately, he wanted a break and decided to give baseball a try. Growing up, I played baseball every year from T-ball until I was about 16. Loved it and had great coaches that I still think about some of the lessons that they taught me on sportsmanship, hustle, and love of the game. I try to instill those virtues to my kids and the kids that I coach in football.
Sitting on the sideline is not easy as a coach.
Against our advise to our boy that there were going to be great players on the team that have been playing for years and that he probably would be behind in skills. He’d probably spend some time on the bench and in “dreamer’s corner.” He decided to play.
I should have known at the first practice . . .
First impressions are everything. By the third practice, the coach was still calling the new kids “you, you, and you.” It drove me crazy that he wasn’t even making an effort to learn their names. I finally told my boy that the next time he calls you “you,” tell him what your name is!
With three games left of the season, I’m done.
Of course we’re going to finish the season, but man, I’d love to just call it quits because it’s been a waste of time. Other parents aren’t too impressed, either. This league has a rule that you can only score 5 runs in an inning and the game is over after 1 and a half hours. We were down by 10 runs in the last inning. Knowing that there was no chance to win, as a coach, I would have given the kids that sit on the bench half of the game and are relegated to the outfield a chance to play in the infield. What does our coach do, you ask? Keeps the 5 kids that play every inning in the infield and keeps the boys that sit on the bench often, on the bench. It truly amazes many families that are observing.
How do you know that you have a bad coach:
- Your coach doesn’t make an effort to learn the names of the kids.
- They criticize kids in front of everyone (parents and teammates).
- They only let the ‘chosen’ kids play in the infield no matter what the score is.
- They don’t give the ‘unchosen’ kids a chance to develop their skills in a new position, even at practice.
- They visibly show their disgust when some at the bottom of the lineup approach the plate.
Don’t get me wrong.
I hope that you don’t think that I’m a poor sport parent. I’m not only talking about my child. The team mom spoke to me the other day because she was upset, too. Remember #2 above? Last week her boy finally got to play 3rd base. In the middle of the game, the opponents had a runner on second. He moved her son from 3rd base to shortstop and yelled to the catcher, “now you can throw the ball to 3rd base!” In front of everyone and loud enough for observers of the game to hear. After the runner stole 3rd, he switched them back to their previous positions. Do you know what karma is? It’s when the player that got switched to 3rd base drops the ball and the runner scores.