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Thursday, May 08, 2008

No Joy In Mudville....

One of the most frustrating things in sports is a rivalry that always places you on the short end of the stick. While the axiom about any team beating any other team on a given day is true, sometimes it doesn't work out that way. We lost a hard fought and exciting game last night...

We are the home team, so we bat last.
1st inning - We are down 5-4
2nd inning - We lead 11-5 (We hold them to one and we score six)
3rd inning - We lead 17-11 (They score six and we score six)
4th inning - Tied 17-17 (They score six and we scored a big 0 at bat this inning)
5th inning and final score - 22-19 (They score five, we score two, and the tying run strikes out with two left on base)

The purpose of the game at this age, and the focus of our coaching staff, is several items:
1) To teach the game of baseball, and the fundamentals
2) To teach teamwork and hustle
3) To teach competitiveness and the desire to win

We have been relatively successful, I think, because the kids are disappointed with losing. Part of our responsibility is to teach how to lose respectfully and with dignity. We tell them that they shouldn't like it, but that they have to be good sports and have good attitudes.

8-3 for the year so far with four games left. We don't play this team again, and I am glad because they seem to have our number. All three losses are to the same kids. Someone forgot to tell them that every other team fears our

So we press on and hope that we can win out and the other team loses two.

7 Posts From Readers:

rockync said...

although I'm sure the kids are disappointed, those scores show they were well matched and fought hard. I hope they will be encouraged by their close win to keep up practice for next season.
Tell your son that Rocky in North Carolina says,"Woo, hoo! Good job!"

Robert (Conservative Commentary) said...

I will pass that on!

We aren't out of it yet, and we have a good chance of winning all four remaining games. The probability that the other team will lose 2 of 4 is a bit unlikely though. At least the kids are only six and are spared the mathmatical computations of probabilities of staying in first

Another benefit of being six is that they forgot about the results of the game as soon as we drove away to find supper....

My son was off his game last night. He struck out once and let a ball get past him that scored a run. He is a pretty good natural hitter, and one game this year had a triple, two doubles, four RBIs, and scored the winning run. He also had two unassisted outs and tagged a runner that stepped off second base. I need to develop him so I can retire early and watch him pitch for the Cardinals.

The Liberal Lie The Conservative Truth said...

Good luck and teel the kids that was some batting exibition!! Sounded more like a football score!

Good luck on a continued winning record!

Anonymous said...

8-3 that's a pretty good record. We aren't so fortunate. The "coach" was by himself and only had 2 practices. That's where me and Johnny went in to help. They look a lot like the bad news bears....LOL I think that the biggest problem with these kids is that they are more interested in the bug on the ground than what is happening in the game. I think that's why Nicholas gets so upset. He knows the game and what to do and he is frustrated when the other kids get the ball and don't have a clue what to do with it. He plays first and is first in the batting order, so for the most part, he is happy. He gets a lot of action.

That sounds like a really tough loss but it sounds like you have a great attitude, to teach the kids how to lose with dignity!

Robert (Conservative Commentary) said...

I played competitive sports my whole life. Baseball from the time I was six until I graduated high school. Football the same, except I didn't start that young. In Jr. High I took up basketball and played until I graduated.

I have always believed that sports is life writ large. Losing is part of it and you have to learn those lessons as well. The truth is that we learn more from failures(losing) than we do from successes (winning). I want my kids to be dissappointed when they lose. I want them to be angry with themselves when they don't perform at their best. I want them to want to win every time and to have a cold spot in their hearts when they lose but could have won with just a bit more effort or focus.

That said, when we lose we can't be mad at the other team. We have to be dejected, yet retain the ability to see the big picture and learn what has to be done to prevent it from happening again. Even at six, we don't expect perfection but as the head coach says "It doesn't take talent to try hard and hustle".

I want the kids to look inward after a loss, not outward.

TRUTH-PAIN said...

I never did get the "quaintness" and Americana of Baseball even though my Dad is a certifiable Baseball loony. I do follow major league ball from time to time but i lost interest after the Mcquire / Sosa thing back in the day. I have heard that minor league ball is charming as hell and a hell of a way to kill a few hours in the Sun.....hummmm.....

Robert (Conservative Commentary) said...

We have a Double A team here, the Birmingham Barons. We spend many evenings there ins the spring and summer, and it beats pro baseball hands down. The guys are hungry for their break, and the fun between innings captivates the kids. The park is only 10 minutes from my house, so it is perfect.

If you get a chance, go hit a minor league park. I was won over on my first visit!

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