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We start next week with a tournament with a bunch of the top teams in the state that have some high profile prospects. Son is scheduled to start on the bump against last years state champs. But in legging out a triple in last weekend's scrimmage, he tweaked his hamstring. It appears to be a grade 1 strain. He was having a great pre-season at the plate and on the mound and he was really distraught.  After two days of icing, rest, and elevating his leg, he started with reciprocal inhibition exercises on Monday. Today he moves into light stretching. Coach has him sitting out of practice. He is doing arm care exercises and static hitting drills. When he is not on the bump, he bats lead off and plays CF. But I think the hope for next weekend is that if his hamstring is not bothering him, he will take the bump for a few innings, but no hitting or CF. Not an ideal to the start of his junior year.

First HS game is in the books for this season (loss unfortunately).  Like Senna we have 6 games over the next 8 days (also in GA).  Looking like son will play primarily 3B this year with a little pitching here and there.  Coach also has him taking reps at SS and 2B at practice and told him to be ready to fill in at either of those spots if the starters there go in to pitch.  All good news for the kid (primary catcher) who is trying to diversify his skill set and resume based on some advice from here on another thread (catcher position limiting recruiting?).

Good luck everyone as you get your seasons going!

2024's Missouri HS season begins on March 18th, with tryouts starting on 2/28. 2024 and his class will be pushing the upperclassmen really hard, with several juniors having already dropped from the program as they aren't willing to compete, potentially not start, and be relegated to the JV squad or become varsity backups.

School isn't known for baseball, but made a run to the "elite 8" last year, losing to the eventual (and defending) champs on a little league trick play (pic below after it happened). Best finish in over 20 years, and 4 of the starters were freshman.

Heading to Jackie Robinson Training Center (old Dodger Town) in Vero Beach next month to begin the season, and learned that 3 of the 5 teams who will be there are from St. Louis, including one from our conference we haven't defeated in over 20 years! LOL!!

Good luck to your boys!

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EDIT: 2024 reminded me of what really happened -- trying to block the memory!

Quick recap: We had just taken a 1-0 lead in the 6th. Bottom of 7, we get 2 quick outs. Kid smacked a double, so one on, 2 out. Next batter is walked. Ground ball to 3rd, and the ball is sailed over the 1st baseman, runner on 2nd scored, now runner on third. Next guy walked. Now 1st and 3rd, 2 out. Here we go...runner on first jogged midway to 2nd and parked there, pitcher stepped off and walked towards him,  runner on third scored to end the game. Yup. That happened. The other coach mentioned in the news that he saw our guys with "their heads down" and figured why not try it...

Last edited by CubsFanInSTL

First regular season game in the books. 10-5 win over a not so great team. Son came back from his hip injury and played great. Arm strength to 2b was excellent and the added 40lbs really made a difference. Didn’t think he’d hit today because he couldn’t swing last night. Somehow he ended up in the lineup and actually had decent swings and was on time.

cuts today for 2022's team. "Friendly" two game tourney this weekend, another one next weekend with real games starting first week in March.

Could start all seniors, but won't. P5 players at 1st. and 3rd. Mid Major D1s at catcher and second.  short and of are all d3  HA guys.  Lot of parity in the league. Will be a four team shoot out for 3 state berths.

1st day of the season/tournament  canceled because of freezing weather and rain. Tournament was reorganized to play DH's on back to back days. The schedule update did us no favors. We now have to play the state champs, one of the state semifinalists, and a school that is traditionally good and has probably the top prospect in the state. Throw in the cold weather this weekend (40-45 degrees). A grind to start the season.

Supposed to be sitting at the 1st game of the 2022's final HS season this morning (after breakfast at George's in Waco).

Instead I'm working from home,  watching the dogs chase squirrels around the icy back yard, and keeping and eye on the news from Europe on TV.

BTW, it was 85 on Monday.

Any chance you guys are playing in the Round Rock tournament this weekend? That is where we were supposed to be today. The bus was leaving at 7am for an 11:30am DH. But since today was canceled, we are now heading out later today for two games tomorrow.

Last edited by ARCEKU21
@ARCEKU21 posted:

Any chance you guys are playing in the Round Rock tournament this weekend? That is where we were supposed to be today. The bus was leaving at 7am for an 11:30am DH. But since today was canceled, we are now heading out later today for two games tomorrow.

No we were going to Waco.  That got cancelled on Monday, so we organized a tournament in Odessa, but on Tuesday evening that idea got "nixed".  Hopeful to get in a DH on Fri and Sat close to home (DFW area).

Travel safe

Last edited by russinfortworth
@ARCEKU21 posted:

Any chance you guys are playing in the Round Rock tournament this weekend? That is where we were supposed to be today. The bus was leaving at 7am for an 11:30am DH. But since today was canceled, we are now heading out later today for two games tomorrow.

I always thought the Round Rock tourney was a great way to start the season. The level of competition is really good and in one weekend you can get a decent idea of what you have to work with. The first time there was in 2015 when my middle son was a senior. His HS baseball program had been a dumpster fire for years and a good coach (that knew how to build a program) had been brought in. But parents got wind that he was going to cut upperclassmen that couldn’t help the team in favor of some younger players that could (including my youngest son). These parents (which included 3 RISD employees) banded together, created false allegations, and got the good coach run off over Christmas break to protect their kids spots on the roster. They then brought in a puppet, with zero experience as a HC, that they could control. Puppet’s first game was the opener of 2015 Round Rock tournament. His team were visitors in that game and went into the 7th inning trailing 7-3. Team goes 3 up and 3 down - and the players started packing up their gear. Puppet had not left the 3rd base coaching box and began hollering at his players to get their gloves and take the field. The base umpire was standing nearby with drop jaw (as I was). Ump walks over to Puppet and says, “coach, the game is over.” Let that sink in for a moment. The HC for a 6A HS baseball program in Texas didn’t know when the game was over. An umpire had to tell him. The three most talented underclass players in the program (including my son) all transferred at the end of the year. Puppet lasted 2 more years before the snakes that brought him in got rid of him and he hasn’t coached a baseball game at any age level since then. To steal a tag line from @Consultant, true story!

I’m so glad my kids didn’t grow up at one of the places I live now. The Maine high school ski team championships were last weekend. It’s going to snow 8-12 tomorrow. Basketball and hockey don’t play their championship games until March 5. The high school baseball season opens mid April. The regular season is fourteen games in six weeks. MaxPreps doesn’t even have the schedules posted yet.

The Portland Sea Dogs opening day is April 8. There isn’t a snowball’s chance in hell of the game selling out unless it’s abnormally warm that day with heavy walk up ticket sales.

I’m going skiing Monday.

Lefty got his first loss (and first for team, now 4-1).  Very good team (8 in lineup headed to draft or P5s/top 25 programs).  Went 6.2 innings, no runs.  Lefty is getting up there in pitch count and gives up a piddly hit to a kid headed to Arizona to put two on with two outs in a scoreless game.  Instead of letting him finish coach pulls him.  Two pitchers later....5 runs have scored.  Team goes into the final at bats reeling and defeated, I don't think any of the kids actually swung at a baseball.

Weather has been cold for SoCal, but that's mid 60's so I won't complain

2 games in and it's going the way i expected...mysson isn't getting anything to hit. 8PA, 3bb, 1hbp, lol.  he's the only real returning threat in the lineup and the other teams know it.  he's frustrated but needs to figure out how to get through it.  2-0 against weaker preseason teams.  couple weeks until league starts and we'll really know what this team is made of. 

The weather has been fantastic in southwest Mo this week and my boys are on their second day of practice. Both are healthy and ready to go. Scrimmages Friday and Saturday with the first pre-season game next week. First year of them driving to practice, and it's about 25 miles to the school. The wife is having a little separation anxiety but we are all ready for some baseball!! As a bonus the travel uniforms came in and we are ready to see some new country this summer. Folks as screwed up as this country looks at times, we are so incredibly blessed to live in the USA!! Best of luck to all the players this season. Let's go boys!!   

@RJM posted:

Orange Lutheran (wink, wink) doesn’t recruit. Right?

It's so bad the public schools are asking to change the rules, opening to recruiting for all schools.  I can almost forgive the recruiting during middle school, but the transfers of kids going in to their senior season leaves a really sour taste in my mouth.  I feel like the sit-out period should be longer.  On the other hand they are really, really good.  And really fun to watch.

First game started off great. Son was on the bump. Had a handful of various entities there to see him pitch. Threw five shut out innings with 7 K's. Also hit a double in his first at bat and drove in a run later in the game. Was riding high going into game 2. Then the baseball gods humbled him. 0-4 with 2 K's in the second game and left about 5 runners on base. But the team did go 2-0 on the day.

@LousyLefty posted:

It's so bad the public schools are asking to change the rules, opening to recruiting for all schools.  I can almost forgive the recruiting during middle school, but the transfers of kids going in to their senior season leaves a really sour taste in my mouth.  I feel like the sit-out period should be longer.  On the other hand they are really, really good.  And really fun to watch.

After freshman year of high school my son was offered an academic scholarship to a private Catholic ** if he played at least baseball and soccer. He was also a basketball player. This was a perennial participant in the state baseball playoffs. He was a top student. But the connection humored me.

Until the school approached with the scholarship he was badgered by athletes and friends he knew who were already there. The kids did the recruiting. The academic ride was the attempted close. After all, recruiting is illegal.

He stayed at his high school. The private Catholic went to states the next three years and won once while his high school only went once. But his soccer team went to states three times.

** Think Mater Dei, Servite relative to Southern CA. I lived in SoCal for 22 years.

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I am starting to think that my son may end up playing more games the covid year than we will this year. Another canceled game yesterday because of weather. While some teams in the area are getting into double digits of games, we are stuck on 5 games. And more weather expected this weekend.

Another weird scenario with the season. MaxPreps released their new top 25 teams yesterday. My sons team was ranked, which has me puzzled. The top teams in the state in other polls (PG, PBR, etc) are not even in their rankings. In the PG & PBR state rankings, they cracked the top 10. One state poll doesn't even have my son's team in the top 25. So really strange to see them in the top 25 national rankings for MaxPreps. Maybe they know something we don't.

Going into last Friday, MaxPreps had our team ranked #1 in all divisions in the state of Georgia.  MaxPreps just uses a math formula, almost zero scouting.  # of wins and losses and difficulty of schedule.  At this point in the season, it's almost random chance.

Too bad the kids don't understand that.  They got the big head and were beat by two teams that never should have been in the game.

Prep baseball has us 2nd in 5a.  I can almost believe that but some heavy hitters are just getting warmed up.

2024's "sign up" period is over. After a thorough review of the sign-up sheets and a few late-night consultations with a Magic 8 Ball, the head coach announced that everyone who signed-up made Varsity or JV. Varsity was pretty cut and dry: all seniors (including one who quit during sign-ups last year) and juniors made varsity, along with several very solid sophomores. There are sophomores who were assigned to the JV team that are significantly better players than many of the seniors (there are only two juniors). No one is surprised -- just another "eye-roll" moment in the annals of the school's fine baseball tradition.

Heading to Vero Beach next week for a round of games, the team will consist of 12 sophomores, 1 junior, and 2 freshman.

Last season the team won its first district championship in 18 years, and had its best finish since 1973. Only 2 starters graduated. High expectations this year. Well, sort of...

Last edited by CubsFanInSTL
@2022NYC posted:

The Ortho will not clear hitting and running for my kid until April or May. He has been hitting for a month now and sprinted for the past few weeks, but I get his conservative approach. The kid is likely to miss his final HS season and he is wearing it well but I can see the hurt.

Sorry to hear this NYC. Hopefully, he'll get cleared soon enough and enjoy at least part of his senior season.

Sooooo, a friend's son was facing an uncommitted 2024 RHP that throws 90. RHP strikes him out and one of those player ranking orgs posted a video of it to social where you can hear him say "sit the eff down you little b****". Well, next AB by buddy's kid hits a BOMB. I told him he should reply to the original post with that video and "why don't you show his next AB?" From a social media etiquette standpoint, would that be frowned upon?

2024's "sign up" period is over. After a thorough review of the sign-up sheets and a few late-night consultations with a Magic 8 Ball, the head coach announced that everyone who signed-up made Varsity or JV. Varsity was pretty cut and dry: all seniors (including one who quit during sign-ups last year) and juniors made varsity, along with several very solid sophomores. There are sophomores who were assigned to the JV team that are significantly better players than many of the seniors (there are only two juniors). No one is surprised -- just another "eye-roll" moment in the annals of the school's fine baseball tradition.

Heading to Vero Beach next week for a round of games, the team will consist of 12 sophomores, 1 junior, and 2 freshman.

Last season the team won its first district championship in 18 years, and had its best finish since 1973. Only 2 starters graduated. High expectations this year. Well, sort of...

At my son’s high school the coach gave uniforms to seniors who never gave up and quit. These were competent, but part time JV players as juniors. The uniform came with the understanding they were mostly cheerleaders and foul ball chasers. When my son was a soph one of these seniors was so popular and well respected he was considered a leader. These were players talented enough to start on teams in the bottom half of the standings. In the summer they played Legion ball.

The team hasn’t been too hot as of late. My boy got a few innings against one of the top teams in the state and did well. Looks like he’ll be seeing a lot more time on the mound this year. Switched up my avatar accordingly.

Spring break is here and there are no team functions until they get back. It’ll be nice to do our own thing for a few days

Sooooo, a friend's son was facing an uncommitted 2024 RHP that throws 90. RHP strikes him out and one of those player ranking orgs posted a video of it to social where you can hear him say "sit the eff down you little b****". Well, next AB by buddy's kid hits a BOMB. I told him he should reply to the original post with that video and "why don't you show his next AB?" From a social media etiquette standpoint, would that be frowned upon?

If a kid wants to talk sh$t he deserves what he gets. I would normally say no but I think the smack talking is out of control and some need their comeuppance. So post away.

I never had an opposing player say sit the "f" down you little "B", but then again I only struck out 3 times my varsity year and I weighed 265. I understand that things have changed dramatically since the early 80's, but I really wish people could clean up their language, especially children playing a game. I understand that some folks may disagree, but I think we can do better. A little negative reinforcement wouldn't hurt. Our principal had a three foot long paddle that would motivate the biggest and toughest. He had a solid two hand swing, and a handle that would accommodate it. 

Having fun playing the game is part and parcel to the experience. It’s one of the main reasons to play at all. The game isn’t always fun but for the most part players play for love of the game. There is a line between “having fun playing the game” and “behavior that disrespects the game and disrespects your opponent” - and players have been allowed to live on the wrong side of that line. The same way that much of society is on the wrong side of the line too, but I digress. Baseball has historically been a game that self-polices inappropriate behavior. In recent years snowflakes have voiced their objections alleging unsafe practices - which has promoted a surge in bat flips, stare downs, flip offs, sh&t talking, and other forms of bad behavior that some people want to normalize. I’m not one of them. I will never condone throwing at a batter’s head. But there is a time for a knockdown pitch and if a hitter ever flipped a bat when I played the next guy was getting plunked in the ribs. So guess what? Players didn’t pull those stunts. The unwritten rules of baseball (that people that never played the game object to) exist for a reason. And that reason is to preserve the integrity of the game thru insuring some behavioral standards. Call me get off my lawn guy if you want. The game is better when it’s played the right way.

@adbono posted:

Having fun playing the game is part and parcel to the experience. It’s one of the main reasons to play at all. The game isn’t always fun but for the most part players play for love of the game. There is a line between “having fun playing the game” and “behavior that disrespects the game and disrespects your opponent” - and players have been allowed to live on the wrong side of that line. The same way that much of society is on the wrong side of the line too, but I digress. Baseball has historically been a game that self-polices inappropriate behavior. In recent years snowflakes have voiced their objections alleging unsafe practices - which has promoted a surge in bat flips, stare downs, flip offs, sh&t talking, and other forms of bad behavior that some people want to normalize. I’m not one of them. I will never condone throwing at a batter’s head. But there is a time for a knockdown pitch and if a hitter ever flipped a bat when I played the next guy was getting plunked in the ribs. So guess what? Players didn’t pull those stunts. The unwritten rules of baseball (that people that never played the game object to) exist for a reason. And that reason is to preserve the integrity of the game thru insuring some behavioral standards. Call me get off my lawn guy if you want. The game is better when it’s played the right way.

Played a middling team yesterday (game 2 of 3 due to weather today).

Their bench was awfully loud and obnoxious even though they were down 8-1 in the 3rd.

In the 4th their catcher gets on 2nd and wasn't even shy about it.  He's yelling "inside" or  "outside"  on every pitch giving location......if you want to be subtle about it ok, but I still digress.

I'm tracking pitch count by the dugout and before I can even say anything to the son (he's at SS) he gives me the "zip it" sign to his mouth.

Catcher comes up 2 innings later, our catcher sets up so far outside on 1st pitch it is crazy.......................batter dives for outside pitch and ball goes behind him.  I get a little grin, nod my head, and take a sip of my diet coke and feel a little of that baseball player / dad moment that gets you all warm inside.

Next inning when son came up to bat there looked to be a one-sided 10 second conversation w/ the catcher.

Got home later and asked what he said, and he said "I just told him don't do that, or he's going to get one of his teammates hurt one day".

It's the little things sometimes.

Last edited by russinfortworth

Are we at a time where society has degenerated to the point where the dystopic actions that we are discussing have become commonplace and now are the norm rather than the exception? I mean, there are states legalizing illicit narcotics (heroin, cocaine) and they are being applauded by large segments of our society. Is baseball and other sports just becoming a micro of the macro society? It's troubling and concerning to me, but it seems as though others are apathetic.   

Pitcher goes viral for massive 'Horns Down' gesture

By the way this ^^^^ Completely Acceptable!!!   but you got to buckle one of the best power hitters in the country for a called 3rd strike to beat the #1 team in the nation.   

Very happy for Steve Trout and Texas State. They are a very good mid-major program that flies under the national radar for some reason. I absolutely love the coaching staff there. They recruited my son and he committed to them before his back injury ended his career. Sadly he never even reported to campus. But both me and my son root for the Bobcats and enjoy their success. Besides taking down the ‘horns this week they also took 2 of 3 from Arizona (on the road) last weekend - and Arizona is really good. Texas State is a team to keep an eye on.

@Triple J posted:

Are we at a time where society has degenerated to the point where the dystopic actions that we are discussing have become commonplace and now are the norm rather than the exception? I mean, there are states legalizing illicit narcotics (heroin, cocaine) and they are being applauded by large segments of our society. Is baseball and other sports just becoming a micro of the macro society? It's troubling and concerning to me, but it seems as though others are apathetic.   

Facts matter.  

Cocaine is not a narcotic. No state has legalized heroin or cocaine for recreational use. Cocaine has been legal in the US for medical use for some time.

Decriminalization and defelonization are not the same as legalization. And in the instance of Oregon, it wasn’t the “state” that decriminalized, but the voters who passed the ballot initiative. In Colorado, it was the state senate and house representatives that passed it, representing the will of their electorate.

There are certainly some areas of society can one can argue as being dystopic, but I for one don’t feel that the dismantling of the  wasteful and racist 50 year old “war on drugs” is one of them. And a large majority of Americans (70% by most counts) feel that the federal drug policies are not working and need reform. But that’s completely off topic here.

On topic: I love appropriate emotion in games. But I think it’s hard for all of us to define “inappropriate”, other than to channel Justice Potter Stewart’s “I know it when I see it”.

The fact is voters are the "State". Cocaine or heroin are "narcotics" or "drugs" depending on which state you reside in. Still an illicit narcotic here anyway. Slight modifications in terminology are really splitting hairs. Legalization is a relevant term as I applied it. We could debate that the amounts possessed are specifically prescribed within the law but that it not relevant. Bottom line is no amount of heroin or cocaine is good for anyone. I'm not going to debate the criminal statues and federal criminal codes that apply. We could get off into the world of derivatives but that is not relevant either.   

Sooooo, a friend's son was facing an uncommitted 2024 RHP that throws 90. RHP strikes him out and one of those player ranking orgs posted a video of it to social where you can hear him say "sit the eff down you little b****". Well, next AB by buddy's kid hits a BOMB. I told him he should reply to the original post with that video and "why don't you show his next AB?" From a social media etiquette standpoint, would that be frowned upon?

This is just like the video one of the ranking orgs posted the other day of a hard throwing pitcher, that while in his wind up, he waves bye bye to the batter and then throws a fast ball buy him. Just shook my head when I saw it.

I'm not interested in debating it RJM. I've seen what it does to people and society. Not debatable for me. I understand the sociological debate, but most have an agenda or profit to be realized. I did however read the article. Personal experience through occupation has proven these so called "experts" to be radically and overwhelmingly wrong, without exception.

Now back to baseball.

@Triple J posted:

I'm not interested in debating it RJM. I've seen what it does to people and society. Not debatable for me. I understand the sociological debate, but most have an agenda or profit to be realized. I did however read the article. Personal experience through occupation has proven these so called "experts" to be radically and overwhelmingly wrong, without exception.

Now back to baseball.

You’re denying twenty years of statistical proof.

1C47F032-9B54-440E-AADA-8441D5DED588@adbono posted:

Very happy for Steve Trout and Texas State. They are a very good mid-major program that flies under the national radar for some reason. I absolutely love the coaching staff there. They recruited my son and he committed to them before his back injury ended his career. Sadly he never even reported to campus. But both me and my son root for the Bobcats and enjoy their success. Besides taking down the ‘horns this week they also took 2 of 3 from Arizona (on the road) last weekend - and Arizona is really good. Texas State is a team to keep an eye on.

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So my 2022 had his first scrimmage today. In NYC you have to use wood bats. My 2022 is committed to being a PO in college but still hits and plays 1B in HS. A few weeks ago he was looking for a wood bat. I knew we had multiple cheap wood bats in the basement. Long story short, he wanted a nice new wood bat. I laughed and told him to use his teammates Baum bat.  He used his own money to go buy a nice new shiny Victus bat.

First swing of First At Bat of First scrimmage.....hits it off the end and he breaks the bat (It also had a lizard skin grip that I put on for him). I laughed until I almost cried. Then I did feel a bit bad.

Next AB using his teammates Baum Bat, hits it off the top of the fence for a double. I'm done....

Played a middling team yesterday (game 2 of 3 due to weather today).

Their bench was awfully loud and obnoxious even though they were down 8-1 in the 3rd.

In the 4th their catcher gets on 2nd and wasn't even shy about it.  He's yelling "inside" or  "outside"  on every pitch giving location......if you want to be subtle about it ok, but I still digress.

I'm tracking pitch count by the dugout and before I can even say anything to the son (he's at SS) he gives me the "zip it" sign to his mouth.

Catcher comes up 2 innings later, our catcher sets up so far outside on 1st pitch it is crazy.......................batter dives for outside pitch and ball goes behind him.  I get a little grin, nod my head, and take a sip of my diet coke and feel a little of that baseball player / dad moment that gets you all warm inside.

Next inning when son came up to bat there looked to be a one-sided 10 second conversation w/ the catcher.

Got home later and asked what he said, and he said "I just told him don't do that, or he's going to get one of his teammates hurt one day".

It's the little things sometimes.

Earlier this week we had a Dad for the opposing team set up right behind the backstop calling where the catcher setup every time.  We won 11-1 in six, so it really did not matter.  But it reminded me why I never sit behind home or with other parents.  This field was designed in a way we could only sit in the bleachers.

2024 played his first-ever varsity game in our season opener vs. a solid team from Virginia. Down 7-1 after 4, he's brought in to "eat some innings." Retired the first 9, and we knotted the game up in the top of the 7th at 7-7. Took a 10-7 lead in the top of the 8th, and four batters later helped the team win its season opener! 4 K's, no walks, and 1 for 3 at the plate. Probably still has the smile on his face as he's sleeping!

Last edited by CubsFanInSTL

Earlier this week we had a Dad for the opposing team set up right behind the backstop calling where the catcher setup every time.  We won 11-1 in six, so it really did not matter.  But it reminded me why I never sit behind home or with other parents.  This field was designed in a way we could only sit in the bleachers.

This problem is solved by extending a tarp from pole to pole.

HS season starts in 10 days.

Kid is a senior catcher and he suffered a grade 1 UCL tear exactly 8 weeks ago. He's just been cleared to start a RTT program but he says his arm doesn't feel right when just trying to throw the ball 45 feet. The RTT program runs 12 weeks but some said he might be able to throw normal in six.

Anyway, kid can't throw and the HS coach knows it. Kid has offered to DH until he can throw. (He can physically catch now but he just can't throw.)

Everyday for the last 2 weeks - including text messages at night and on the weekends, the coach asks the kid "Can you play catcher now?"

And, every time he's asked, the kid says the same thing: I haven't thrown since January. I can't throw now. I don't know when I will be able to throw in a game yet. But, as soon as I feel like I can throw in a game, I will let you know.

Yet the coach keeps asking and pressuring him, constantly. (There's also like 4 other kids who can catch.)

Yesterday at practice, coach tells my son to go play 1B. Kid says "But, I can't throw." And coach says "I don't care. Play first. If you want to hit then you have to play a position. We're not just going to use you as a DH." So, the kid plays 1B in practice and tries to avoid using his throwing arm.

Now, on top of this, one of the best players on the team is a L/L who is primarily a 1B and a real good one. He's out in RF now and pissed that he's been moved off 1B because of all this. (We know this because he's great friends with my son.)

I'm not looking for an answer here with this post. Just venting. And, for sure, I'm done with this HS baseball drama crap. I will not miss this at all when it's over.

If it were my son he would be off the team.

He needs to be able to play this summer before he heads off to school in the fall and be ready for fall practice. If he isn't supposed to throw that's exactly what he is supposed to be doing, not throw. But he is still a kid and he is being bullied into a situation that's not good for him.

YOU need to have a conversation with the coach.

@TPM posted:

If it were my son he would be off the team.

He needs to be able to play this summer before he heads off to school in the fall and be ready for fall practice. If he isn't supposed to throw that's exactly what he is supposed to be doing, not throw. But he is still a kid and he is being bullied into a situation that's not good for him.

YOU need to have a conversation with the coach.

I offered. Told my son: You're 17. Maybe he needs to hear it from an adult and a parent "Kid can't throw. Don't play him until he can throw. He will let you know as soon as he can throw. No need to ask him about it everyday." But my son doesn't want me talking to the coach. He feels it's important that he handles it. So, I'm respecting his wishes.

@Francis7 posted:

I offered. Told my son: You're 17. Maybe he needs to hear it from an adult and a parent "Kid can't throw. Don't play him until he can throw. He will let you know as soon as he can throw. No need to ask him about it everyday." But my son doesn't want me talking to the coach. He feels it's important that he handles it. So, I'm respecting his wishes.

Gotta admire the kid for that stance, and yet, unless all he did was toss lollypops or throw underhand while practicing at first, he allowed himself to get bullied into doing something unsafe, so I'm with @TPM.

Thx @JCG

The funny thing is that the coach and I have spoken a few times in the past  - just when I would run into him somewhere. It was limited to "Hi, how are you? Good luck this season" and stuff like that. But he knows who I am when he sees me. So, it wouldn't be totally out of nowhere if I talked to him. I think the last time I talked to him was October 2020 when my son verbally committed. We talked about it. Maybe I will get lucky and he will say something to me? Then I can say my thoughts and it's not because I went to him.

Last edited by Francis7

Sorry but he is 17 and legally he is still a minor. This is the ugly side HS ball. So I would tell him that you AND him will have a sit down because he isn't handling it well.

It sure is a lot easier than having TJS.

Edit. For insurance purposes it's best to listen to the doctor not the coach. JMO

Last edited by TPM
@TPM posted:

Sorry but he is 17 and legally he is still a minor. This is the ugly side HS ball. So I would tell him that you AND him will have a sit down because he isn't handling it well.

It sure is a lot easier than having TJS.

Edit. For insurance purposes it's best to listen to the doctor not the coach. JMO

Thanks. The other part of it is that his college coaches are aware of his injury and RTT program. And they are telling him "Do it right. Take your time. We want you 100% when you get here." (And that makes sense!) But, for the kid, he's got a current coach pressing him and a future coach telling him the opposite. 

I'm going to see what happens at practice today. I might just tell my son to quit, if he wants to...

I know the coach will never let him quit because that will become a grand jury investigation at the school once the word got out that he was quitting. So, maybe he has to play that card to get the coach to get off his back?

This coach's impatience is delaying your son's return date and putting him at risk of a more serious injury.  I think an email is in order.  Also, if he doesn't feel right throwing 45, something is wrong, he shouldn't be doing the RTT program and he should go back to the doctor.  Pain isn't the only indicator for when something isn't right. Firsthand experience here.

Last edited by LousyLefty

Francis, you are an adult and your son is a child. Even 17 year old athletes who look like men think and act like children.  If your account is accurate the HS coach is also acting like a child. He is putting your son in harm’s way and putting his future at risk. As a father it’s your responsibility to take care of your child and make sure he isn’t in harms way. I don’t care what your son says or what kind of scene it creates, you need to do your job as a parent and protect your son.

When son was in his senior year husband and I not happy with how he was being a bit overused. The HS coach was getting ready to retire and he wanted to get to regionals and putting pressure on son. Since son was also being used as DH, first base we felt that long outings at the coaches expense was not necessary.

He had a 90% scholarship and we decided that was more important. The future pcoach made a phone call.

That was the end of staying in the game too long.

Protect your player for as long as you can.

Agree with all the above. Should talk with the coach ASAP. If it were me and he has pain from 45', I'd probably lead with "my son can't play in the field this season". It stops the coach from asking and takes pressure off your son. If he does make it back and can throw before the end of the season, great, and my guess is the coach would let him throw.

@Francis7 posted:

Thx @adbono

He has practice today after school. If things haven't improved, I'm going to come up with a way to connect with him.

If I were in your shoes this is what I would do. Get a note from the physician that’s attending to your son’s injury. Make sure it specifically describes what activities are allowed and what is not. Email a copy to the HC, AD, and school principal. State in your email that you expect the physician’s guidelines to be adhered to without question and without undue pressure being put on your son. If that doesn’t take care of it then I would turn up the heat.

@adbono posted:

If I were in your shoes this is what I would do. Get a note from the physician that’s attending to your son’s injury. Make sure it specifically describes what activities are allowed and what is not. Email a copy to the HC, AD, and school principal. State in your email that you expect the physician’s guidelines to be adhered to without question and without undue pressure being put on your son. If that doesn’t take care of it then I would turn up the heat.

That's already done. The note from the orthopedist says "once he comfortably completes the RTT program, he can return to catching in games." The coach and the trainer have it. The principal is an old lady and a waste of time. The AD is arrogant from what I have been told.

Maybe the coach thinks 1B is a loophole here?

@Francis7 posted:

That's already done. The note from the orthopedist says "once he comfortably completes the RTT program, he can return to catching in games." The coach and the trainer have it. The principal is an old lady and a waste of time. The AD is arrogant from what I have been told.

Maybe the coach thinks 1B is a loophole here?

Here is the problem. It should state ALL practice activities,  it just says catching.

Make a call to ortho office and explain  for clarification.

Come on Francis you can do this!

@Francis7 posted:

That's already done. The note from the orthopedist says "once he comfortably completes the RTT program, he can return to catching in games." The coach and the trainer have it. The principal is an old lady and a waste of time. The AD is arrogant from what I have been told.

Maybe the coach thinks 1B is a loophole here?

Then it’s time to turn up the heat. I’m with TPM on this one. A lot of people in Texas would say it’s time to “Cowboy Up.” Considering my already mentioned lack of diplomacy, that’s the kindest way I can say it.

When my son had shoulder separation surgery he wasn’t allowed to throw until he had a note from the ortho stating it was ok. He needed written clearance just to take BP. You might want to check into the school and state athletic rules. You might have the rules on your side before even addressing the coach.

Last edited by RJM

So, today he was back at 1B - until the coach asked him to catch some bullpens. He had to borrow a helmet and mitt because he didn't bother bringing them today. He ended up catching 8 different pitchers. WTF? There's 4 other catchers at the varsity practice. It's also really cold here today. Hmmm...punishment? I asked my kid how he felt about it and he said he's OK...but if he does this again, he's telling the coach no. And he still doesn't want me getting involved.

Kid's team had their first scrimmage. Wonderful NY spring weather; cold, windy and wet. I arrived quite late and was surprised (and really envious) at the number of folks in attendance. The other team started their stud pitcher and there were several scouts in attendance. I was told he was blowing past the batters. Son played the protecting bullpen pitcher in the foul ball area position...I admit he looked pretty good, and I am sure he did that to avoid working the book. He was given an AB and faced a pitcher he is familiar with as they train at the same facility. It looked and sounded like he turned on it very well, but as it flew to the outfield the ball started looking like a pole vaulter and became the ol' can of corn catch for position 8. Pitching was great on both sides and game was won due to a timely hit and botched fielding (can't fault the other team given the crap weather)+ good baserunning.  This is going to be an interesting year as it is the first time the parochial schools will have a state tourney. Lots of teams have stud pitchers but depth will determine who will be the last team standing.

Last edited by 2022NYC

Bad news - son's concussion aftereffects are still taking their toll. Son has been struggling to get back to where he normally is. A bit of blurriness, a bit of getting back in sync, and a bit of bad luck (winds have robbed him of two HRs in the past 2 weeks). Batting 6 hole instead of 4, but.......

The good news is that the team is really coming together at the right time. Swept a 3 game series last week in prep for region play, then took the first two games of their first region series this week. Going for the sweep tomorrow. They're at that stage where when the 1 and 2 hitters are having an off night, the 7 and 8 hitters go 3 for 4.

Our 3 starters are all at .870 or lower WHIP, FIP of 1.2 or lower, and two have a sub-1.0 ERA. Closer has a .5 WHIP. So with luck (meaning no bad luck) and the bats stay alive, they are in a great position. LFGMC!

That stinks he's still feeling the effects of the concussion. Hopefully those winds are blowing the other way for a few games!

I bet you guys get some great HS baseball up that way. I'm always amazed at the strength of the teams we see from GA every summer.

Thanks for the kind words. He's going to have to aim oppo tonight, west winds 10-20 and the 3rd base line runs nearly straight north/south.....

There are some bonkers HS teams, definitely. The one just down the road does a great job of recruiting. Currently has 9 D1 commits, 8 of them are P5. Lost to them 2-1 last year after coach pulled our starter when he reached his pitch count limit.

Another venting post. Nothing new. This has been the story all 4 years on varsity and it's been this way long before we came along.

HS regular and postseason is April through June. We usually play 2 games per week. Maybe there's one week where they have one game scheduled for some reason? But, there's always one week for sure where there's 3 games on the schedule - the week of "spring break."

Now, everyone knows, if you play HS baseball then you better not make plans to go away for spring break. And, I'm behind that one million percent. That's not the beef.

Our games are usually 3:45 or 4 PM starts. That's hard for the working parents. Some work out deals with their employers and get there. Others run out of work at 5 and maybe get there for the last 2 innings. But it is what it is and people do the best they can for supporting their kids.

But, spring break, where they always have 3 games and sometimes it's more because of rescheduled rain outs, the games start at 10 AM. Every time.

The only way parents can attend is to take the day (or the week) off from work. It's so inconvenient. Almost no one goes to these games as spectators unless it's a parent who is self employed or not working.

This year spring break is the end of April. And, while it's a month away, I feel a stomach flu coming on at least one day that week. Yes, it's juvenile but it's the only way to see the game without burning a vacation day.

Why 10 AM? Because the coaches are all teachers and that's their week off too - and they want the afternoons back to go golfing?

@Francis7

The coaches who are teachers deserve a spring break just like the players do. I think 10am sounds great. Kids know that they can't party at night because they have to be up early.

I saw a news report of a young man who saw his mother catch on fire after a bomb dropped. He was hurt as well. He was devastated. It was the last time he saw his mom. I cried my eyes out.

You are right your complaining  is juvenile and it's not life or death. Grow up.

Last edited by TPM

My son's freshman year they had a local tournament during spring break. Games were at 11 and 3. The other 3 years they played at the Boras classic about 2 hours away. That was incredible. Most of the parents were there. We got to see our kids go up against many future college and pro players with lots of scouts around. Just the other day I was flipping channels and saw a kid who robbed my kid of a base hit hit a grand slam in Spring Training.  I guess I was lucky in my job freedom.  My kid played 4 years of varsity baseball and basketball and I missed one baseball game and I think two basketball games.

@TPM posted:

@Francis7

The coaches who are teachers deserve a spring break just like the players do. I think 10am sounds great. Kids know that they can't party at night because they have to be up early.

I saw a news report of a young man who saw his mother catch on fire after a bomb dropped. He was hurt as well. He was devastated. It was the last time he saw his mom. I cried my eyes out.

You are right your complaining  is juvenile and it's not life or death. Grow up.

At a restaurant once, I mentioned to the staff that they got my order wrong. Sadly, none of them ever saw the Hidenburg Disaster in put me in my place like this. I can't believe it took all this time for someone to help me grow up. Thanks TPM.

Francis, as a longtime HS coach, if this is happening to your son and he is in danger of further injury, TAKE HIM OFF OF THE TEAM.  I have dealt with similar situations and never have I gone against what doctors have said.  Your son is not "comfortable" throwing.  What the heck are you going to do when, in a game situation, he turns and throws to the plate on a cut?

We are in season now although, as most of you know I've switched over to softball.  This year had tremendous potential.  We had 6 pitchers in the program with three clearly varsity ready.  Two were battling for the #1 slot in the circle.  One of these two, who I think is better, decided to play TB in Missouri.  Missouri plays HS in the fall.  That player would have also been our SS.  Then, we talk to #3 and tell her that she now is varsity and will play/pitch a lot.  She is upset that she is not #1.  Her mom is even more upset and pulls her from the team.  This young lady is doing the same as the other.  This young lady would have battled for the DH/1B position besides being #2.  We have never thrown our #1 every game like a lot of programs do.  Literally, overnight, we went from a team that could have gone deep into the state playoffs to a team that will have to battle to win a regional.  We are now throwing two freshmen as #2.  So far, we have beaten a team that had 2 SEC recruits and another Mid-Major DI recruit and have lost to a team that wouldn't beat us another time if we played them 9 more times.  That is sometimes the nature of HS sports.  Still, I am having a blast and love every minute of this.

Last edited by CoachB25
@2022NYC posted:

Same boat here Franny. Is your boy driving? This makes it easier at least. I don't need a war thousands of miles away to see the devastation of senseless violence, yes our venting is trivial in the big picture but this isn't this the forum for it?

I thought it was?

Anyway, he drives but they have to be on the bus. I think it's a liability thing? Nothing to complain about though...most of the schools are fairly close by. It's not like having to ride the bus is as devastating as the irish potato famine.

3 years after HS ball is in the rear view mirror, I am still learning that there were a lot of things I didn't understand at the time, for which the coach had reasons that made sense.  This site is definitely a place to vent, or perhaps, put more kindly, to ask for explanations.

I can think of various reasons for 10 am games during spring break:

- the team will play some Saturday morning games in the season, and the coach wants to see how the players do in the mornings

- it will be colder in the morning, and the coach wants to give players practice playing in the cold (youngest son's golf coach did that this weekend)

- as someone already said, shows which players will take it seriously and not party the night before

3 years after HS ball is in the rear view mirror, I am still learning that there were a lot of things I didn't understand at the time, for which the coach had reasons that made sense.  This site is definitely a place to vent, or perhaps, put more kindly, to ask for explanations.

I can think of various reasons for 10 am games during spring break:

- the team will play some Saturday morning games in the season, and the coach wants to see how the players do in the mornings

- it will be colder in the morning, and the coach wants to give players practice playing in the cold (youngest son's golf coach did that this weekend)

- as someone already said, shows which players will take it seriously and not party the night before

None work for us. It's April in the NE. Colder in the morning than the afternoon and neither time is great baseball weather. We almost never play on Saturdays. And the kid on the team who drink don't care. They're going to party anyway.

@CoachB25 and others - an update

Kid has been DHing in scrimmages and that's OK because his orthopedist cleared him to hit while he's doing his RTT and before he returns to the field. Personally, there's some risk here...if he had a really bad fall and stuck out his hands to break the fall, it COULD injury the UCL. Then again, it would have to be a pretty violent fall forward and even then it might not injury the UCL.

He's not playing the field in games. He's been manning 1B in practice and in pregame I/O (along with 4 others) and he is not throwing. He either flips the ball to another 1B standing by him or rolls it into the catcher.

All this unnecessary? Maybe but it's also maybe good for his mental health because he's not happy when completely idle.

Meanwhile he is now on week 2 of RTT and has no intention of rushing or returning until 100%. I suspect the real test won't be until week 4. But by then, it will be almost 3 months since he was hurt.

@Francis7 posted:

@CoachB25 and others - an update

Kid has been DHing in scrimmages and that's OK because his orthopedist cleared him to hit while he's doing his RTT and before he returns to the field. Personally, there's some risk here...if he had a really bad fall and stuck out his hands to break the fall, it COULD injury the UCL. Then again, it would have to be a pretty violent fall forward and even then it might not injury the UCL.

He's not playing the field in games. He's been manning 1B in practice and in pregame I/O (along with 4 others) and he is not throwing. He either flips the ball to another 1B standing by him or rolls it into the catcher.

All this unnecessary? Maybe but it's also maybe good for his mental health because he's not happy when completely idle.

Meanwhile he is now on week 2 of RTT and has no intention of rushing or returning until 100%. I suspect the real test won't be until week 4. But by then, it will be almost 3 months since he was hurt.

Your example is why my knucklehead's ortho was reluctant to clear him as a DH. Between the pandemic and injuries, my kid only played the field as a freshman. He is okay with it now, given he was on the edge of not getting cleared by the doc to DH. He does not like to platoon either, but he is happy he is seeing the pitches well, hitting the ball hard, and sometime placing them "where they ain't".  The weather here is returning to Spring later in the week but the kid will be heading south for several days on his senior trip. The wife will spend that time learning to drive her car again....and cleaning it. 

@2022NYC -

True story. When mine was 11, he got hit in the face with a ball. Nothing broken but had swelling, cuts, bruises, etc. That was in a travel game.

A few days later, we have a Little League game. I'm the manager. My wife says don't play him. I say: I will stick him in LF the whole game. He should be fine.

Sure enough, someone singles to left, the ball hits a hole in the ground and springs right up and hits him in the face.

That's baseball. The highly unlikely likely happens!

@Francis7 posted:

@2022NYC -

True story. When mine was 11, he got hit in the face with a ball. Nothing broken but had swelling, cuts, bruises, etc. That was in a travel game.

A few days later, we have a Little League game. I'm the manager. My wife says don't play him. I say: I will stick him in LF the whole game. He should be fine.

Sure enough, someone singles to left, the ball hits a hole in the ground and springs right up and hits him in the face.

That's baseball. The highly unlikely likely happens!

The morning before my son's first coach pitch game I took in the backyard to hit a few balls. My wife asks if he needs a helmet. I shake my head like, "uh no". Sure enough, I plunked him in the head. Hence the username

The morning before my son's first coach pitch game I took in the backyard to hit a few balls. My wife asks if he needs a helmet. I shake my head like, "uh no". Sure enough, I plunked him in the head. Hence the username

Years ago, I was asked to coach a Little League All-Star team. They made the mistake of letting me throw BP once.

Three years later, I'm at the Little League complex and I ran into one of those former all-stars. My team was practicing and I asked a coach to throw BP as I was talking to the kid. I said to the kid "Better that he throws BP because I suck at it" and the kid says "I remember. You hit me in the back twice during all-stars."

He wasn't wrong.

Last edited by Francis7

Sad sign of the times.

Opening Day is tomorrow for our HS team. So...very...exciting!!

But, wait. The game is canceled. Why?

It's not a conflicting school event or holiday. It's not the weather. It's not because the visiting team can't get a bus. It's not because of COVID-19.

It's because they can't find any umpires to work the game tomorrow. No one is available.

True story. Welcome to 2022.

Damn, the supply chain has impacted HS baseball officiating. Rumor has it there is shipping container full of them sitting in Port Elizabeth.  My kid's season was supposed to start on Monday but it was cancelled (weather?). They played yesterday at the opponent's home field, it was >2.5 hour drive for me with traffic so I passed. It was tight game and kid's team took the lead on the top of the 7th with a double, kid was punched out at home trying to score from 1st. He was disappointed for walking and not scoring, told him he part of the rally to win the game, but he is a teen and I am the "dad", so I am guilty of "dad 'splianing". He left in the middle of the night with the other seniors for their class trip to FL, so the team's next game is not until next week.   

@Francis7 posted:

Too many games in the area at the same time and not enough umps to go around...or willing to work the game.

We had something similar happen last week with our sub varsity teams. The sophomore and JV teams had their Friday night games canceled and moved to the next day. The reason was because there were no umpires to work their games. Someone told me that the umpires were having a "walk out" that weekend to protest something. I didn't get all the details or don't know if that story is true. The next day the two teams did not have umpires again for their games. Luckily one of the dads on the JV team is an umpire and had his gear with him. Both schools agreed to let him umpire the games rather than cancel them.

We have a serious shortage of umpires in the STL area. At our team's "parent night" the AD and HC emphasized this and asked everyone to be mindful of comments made to them. Reactionary expressions are one thing, but riding them is another. We were told that there may be games with only one umpire. The other day we had two, and they were great, and no griping from either side.

It has been very difficult around here finding young men and women to umpire, or, to continue umpiring, as they have to deal with nutty coaches and parents. Seems like the younger the players, the worse it is.

I'm surprised that coaches (like me) aren't required to take some kind of training course on how to work with and approach umpires. Probably makes too much sense.

Last edited by CubsFanInSTL

Francis, you not correct. During 25 years of International Baseball, Area Code games and Coaching, I have not experienced the "parents behavior" as you described.

The greater the baseball knowledge and talent level of the players = the greater the respect for the game by coaches and parents. Our coaches are former pro players or pro scouts.

"Constantly teaching and learning". Wearing the uniform the correct way, observation. study & learn.

Bob

@Francis7 posted:

It would be like everything else.

Everyone would be on their best behavior during the training class and 90% of them would revert to past bad habits once the training was over.

Our LL would get the local HS's to send their players out to umpire our games and we'd give them a donation of $50/game for the program. It was a big fundraiser. The kids started complaining and feared umpiring. A couple times cops were called for safety for a HS kid to walk to his car. I then became league president. For 3 years I had a zero tolerance policy for yelling at kid umps. After a few suspensions things calmed down and for those 3 years we had no problems with umps. Some of the old adult volunteer umps started coming back. By the 3rd season we had 4 umps for every majors game. I handed it over after the 12u season and the new guy did away with the rules. It is now a mess and they are struggling to find 1 ump per game.

@Consultant posted:

Francis, you not correct. During 25 years of International Baseball, Area Code games and Coaching, I have not experienced the "parents behavior" as you described.

The greater the baseball knowledge and talent level of the players = the greater the respect for the game by coaches and parents. Our coaches are former pro players or pro scouts.

"Constantly teaching and learning". Wearing the uniform the correct way, observation. study & learn.

Bob

I would argue the parents act a little differently at ACG than your typical travel or HS game. I've watched the biggest A-hole parent in the universe switch to the role model fan/parent with the committed college coach came to watch his son to check in on him.

Our 2030 daughter started playing club volleyball after a few years of church/school league volleyball, where there was typically a HS aged referee and either parents/coaches or other HS age kids called the lines, kept score/book, and everything seemed to go well.

For club in league and tournament play, an idle team from the age group calls the lines, provides the 2nd referee, and keeps the score and book (their coaches assist them). For a bunch of 9/10 years olds, it was impressive how well they did. Very, very rarely did a coach appeal to the first referee on a call, and I don't think ours ever did. I guess they figured the calls would even out over the evening or weekend, and these coaches are from a perennial HS and club volleyball powerhouse. It was also made known to all parents that the 1st referee can and will toss any coach or spectator from the facility for poor behavior, often without issuing a warning (never happened in any of our matches).

It was rather refreshing to simply watch the kids play without anyone getting all over someone. Same holds true at the older ages.

Edit: She still plays church/school league. When that season ends, club picks up.

Last edited by CubsFanInSTL

In NJ there is a short supply.  Those that are still around are on the older side.  At our association meetings, there has been no talk of unruly parents.  Some of my observations.  The covid hit and canceled a season.  Those that were umpiring and needed the $ found another job to pay the bills.  Not many NJ teams have fields with lights.  Games start at 4pm.  Travel time and prep time means most umps need to be out of their other job by 2:30.  For me personally, that is not possible so I do LL and Cal Rip - USABL.   Those that get into other sports see a greater income / hour.  A varsity level baseball game in NJ - 7 innings - often takes 2.5 hours.  Part of that is the umps own fault for not managing the time between innings.  Some is the talent level and walks / errors extend the game time.  The sub varsity levels are now looking to have a 2 hr time limit implemented.  Var level umps get $85 / game, sub var 67.  Lacrosse umps in NJ get that and more for a 1 hour game.  Softball - a much shorter game get the same as baseball.  I hear the same holds true for other sports.   Now take into consideration Uncle Sam.  Many schools have moved to on line payments through one vendor.  Just a few years ago - you could hide your income by not umping more than $600 worth of games at one school.  Now - no matter what school you ump - the income is all managed and reported thru the vendor.  Assuming a 30% tax bracket (fed + state) that $85 is now net $60.  The state also charges a fee as dose the association.  Then there is the unemployment benefits - the PPE and other subsidies that surrounded the pandemic.   For some the cost is not worth the effort.  There were also a number that chose to retire during the "off" year.   I don't know that there is a quick fix to the problem or that there is one fix.  Getting the young kids involved at 12 yo to do 8yo games on the bases in rec leagues, get them training before each season.  As they get to 15-16 yo get them behind the plate.  And for the state associations - do not have a 18yo age minimum to do games.   Let a 16-17yo fo F or JV games on the bases.  Let them work the lower level schools and work their way up to V and higher levels.  Pair them with an experienced ump one that can evaluate and corrrect as needed.. but then you get push back from the experienced up because he / she will be on lower paid / skill games. 

HS sports officiating supply has been dwindling - even before covid...  There's another thread about where hsbbw members sit during games. In that thread you will find a reason why there's fewer umps - parents who don't get it and why we don't sit near them... Feeling entitled to attack the coach/umpire or talk smack about others children - yikes.  Administrators / coaches fear for their jobs from parents that will go above their heads. If a player or coach gets ejected from a game, there are repercussions including suspensions, taking anger mgmt / sportsmanship courses, etc.  An umpire cannot eject a parent only an administrator / coach could do that. Imagine a coach stopping a game and telling his star pitcher's parent to leave because he's riding the ump for a single pitch his son didn't get called his way. I had to track down an administrator recently who was sitting way away from the "fans" who were riding the opposing pitcher because of his weight. Once he moved closer the jeering stopped, but no other parent or person nearby dared to step in and say knock it off. The coach knew who it was but was not getting involved.

Time and pay wise, yeah other sports make more per hour. You have to love baseball to want to take 4+ hours out of your day (travel, game, travel) for what you get paid and deal with a few ignorant parents. Many associations have mandatory off season training and then there's the FED test. I have to wonder how many parents would get an 80 or better on an open book test of FED rules. How many can track 3-500 pitches a game satisfactorily and judge in real time safe/out, fair/foul, balk or not, etc.  While roboump could solve one problem - I think it would shock you how the game would change at the HS level. It could be longer without the ability to steal a strike. For the most part, pitchers aren't that good yet with control.

Umpires aren't blameless... In some associations there's an old boy network to get to the good/better games. Then again, imagine how hard a 1st year umpire would be ridden at a cross-town rival game when he makes a mistake... Those that are new sometimes have grand dreams, but some of those that have been around for a while don't want to let the newbie get the experience. It's a balance. The newbie gets discouraged and moves on. You can make more per hour at travel or tournament games which are usually timed and you can do 5 or 6 games in a day.

One final thought - the players aren't getting any younger and neither is the average age of the umpire. In a sport where the age of the player is constant, but the age of the umpire increases eventually supply runs out - it's only a matter of time.

@JohnF - we see that a lot by us...the umpires are usually over 50 and most of them are in their 60s or early 70s.

I get part of it. You have to be retired to be able to umpire a HS game at 3:45 PM on a weekday. Nobody is going to make a full time living being an umpire.

But I also think some of those real old timers are doing it because they need the money. And that's sad. People shouldn't have to work like that in their 70s...with the cold or heat, having to wear gear, behind behind the plate for 2.5 hours. Not for $50.

agreed the ump situation is bad.  there's no accountability for the umps so the longer tenured, older umps get the better games. Also, i was told by a friend whose son just started umping that HS games are a higher "status", but weekend tournaments are where the money is.  His son can make 70 bucks a game during a tournament, doing 5 games a day for saturday and sunday.  that way, he can just work weekends and not worry about one-offs during the week.

Umps?!?!  We’re talking about Umps???  Who needs umps!!!

Last week for a double header we all sat around for 25 minutes waiting for the umps.  At that point both teams decided that a coach would call the games from behind the pitcher.  Umps never showed.

This week in middle of a game the field ump took off to the parking lot.  Plate ump called the game for a while.  Then out of no where the field ump just came back on to the field.

Not related, but also a lot of fun, our team showed up for away game and there was a second away team there.  So our team did not play.  Just had to get back on the bus and headed back home.

Sorry but our HS experience has been suspect at best.

Last edited by Around_The_Horn

My son’s high school games started at 3:45pm. A majority of the umpires were of retirement age. Most were 65-70. One was eighty-eight. He was in great shape. He was sharp. He knew the rule book. But, it’s a turn off to have the field umpire standing behind second ask the HPU if the ball bounced over or cleared the fence.

@Francis7 posted:

I might umpire when I retire. But I'm doing 46/60 and 10u and younger. Easier to track the ball and not get killed.

A friend (at the time) was a freshman basketball head coach. He’s now a D3 head coach. He showed up at one of my 12u games (I coached) dressed as a ref. I was surprised.He told me he couldn’t possibly suck as much as some of the refs. So he took the test. What he discovered was making snap decisions in a second wasn’t that easy. He was mediocre at first. But, he improved quickly.

So Around_The_Horn you do understand that as you age the chance to have a middle of the game "need" is greater than that of the <25 yr old who seemingly can go hours... It sucks to have no shows, but sometimes that's the fault of the coach and/or parents... I have no idea in your case, but it's hard to get excited to go for a DH somewhere that every decision is questioned by those that have zero interest in figuring it out.  And Francis7 - trust me when I say 40/60 and 10u is not easier to track the ball. Yes, it's easier to get out of the way, but parabola's and waiting for gravity for kids that are under 4 feet tall is not as easy as you think it is !

Lack of umps just hit our sophomore team already this week. They usually play on Tuesdays and Fridays at the field opposite of where varsity plays. They have now been forced to play a double header on Wednesday night, starting at 5pm. It's looking like the trend may be that sub varsity teams have to play on different days from varsity to fee up some umpires.

@JohnF posted:

HS sports officiating supply has been dwindling - even before covid...  There's another thread about where hsbbw members sit during games. In that thread you will find a reason why there's fewer umps - parents who don't get it and why we don't sit near them... Feeling entitled to attack the coach/umpire or talk smack about others children - yikes.  Administrators / coaches fear for their jobs from parents that will go above their heads. If a player or coach gets ejected from a game, there are repercussions including suspensions, taking anger mgmt / sportsmanship courses, etc.  An umpire cannot eject a parent only an administrator / coach could do that. Imagine a coach stopping a game and telling his star pitcher's parent to leave because he's riding the ump for a single pitch his son didn't get called his way. I had to track down an administrator recently who was sitting way away from the "fans" who were riding the opposing pitcher because of his weight. Once he moved closer the jeering stopped, but no other parent or person nearby dared to step in and say knock it off. The coach knew who it was but was not getting involved.



In that thread I said I sat right behind the plate and this ^ is one of the reasons why.  When my then sophmore made varsity the first game was appalling (argueing balls/strikes, C'mon man how are you so blind? on close plays, etc).  I wanted no part.  But instead of moving to the outfield where my husband wanted to go, I parked my unafraid of confrontation butt dead center.  When Lefty was pitching and people would try to harrass the ump I turned and said "He missed wide, I'm right behind the plate. When your kid pitches you can argue and make the strikezone shrink, but not when it's mine."  I had an umpire ask me in the parking lot after the game if I was the pitcher's mom.  He gave lefty some compliments and also thanked me for attempting to control the situation.  It took a full season (and some seniors graduating) but I feel like we're finally there. Complaining is said to the people directly around you and a really bad call gets laughter or a OOOOOh?!?

@JohnF - just mark this down as another one of your blown calls.  The ump returned from the parking lot, which is in the opposite direction of the restrooms.  So him leaving the game had nothing to do with bladder control.

You do know you don't need a restroom to manage bladder control ... Still seems like a perfect opportunity for you to become part of the solution instead of the problem ...

Just checked in on a game a school in our region is playing. Player X threw 80 pitches over 4 innings, then took over behind the plate for the rest of the game. And this is not the first time this has happened.

I don’t understand how a HS coach can a) think this is ok and b) not have the parents or player say something.

Game #1 for my favorite baseball player's senior HS season yesterday. Haha for all of you warm weather baseball parents...was a breezy and chilly 38 degrees at game time. We were supposed to play a couple last week but with no turf we had to wait longer to play.

Son has not played for his HS since he was a freshman with covid eliminating sophomore season and a broken hamate bone eliminating junior season.

Caught and led off for his squad. First AB he wrecked a preseason goal of no looking strikeouts...he handled it exceptionally well and was my proudest moment of the day. Next ab against the crafty lefty he smoked one between the first and second baseman. 3rd AB got a pitch he hammered after fouling off 2 with two strikes. 4th AB was with his team up 10-2 in bottom of 5th and a guy on base for a game 1 walk-off bomb (not hit as far as the prior homer).

Ended game 3/4 with 2 HR, threw out a kid at 3rd and zero passed balls. Thankful for a healthy start to what I hope is a fun, healthy, senior year for my kid. (attached is video he made of the 2 HR's).  

Attachments

Videos (1)
Pete HS game 1 - 2022
Last edited by used2lurk
@TxballDad posted:

Well 4 games left to the season. Sadly kind of looking forward to it being over. A lot of decisions being made that I don't understand. Most not evolving my son. Looking forward to summer ball. Where things just make more sense.

Thanks for sharing.  This is exactly my sentiment.  Is this a normal state in high school baseball?  I look back now before the season started to conversation I had with more veteran parents and I’m like, “oh that is what they were talking about!!”.

Thanks for sharing.  This is exactly my sentiment.  Is this a normal state in high school baseball?  I look back now before the season started to conversation I had with more veteran parents and I’m like, “oh that is what they were talking about!!”.

What happens in high school baseball depends on whether the coach is a baby sitter who isn’t going to lose his job or expected to maintain a winning program.

When our high school had the former there were seventeen losing seasons in twenty years with the same coach. Only juniors and seniors made varsity.

A new AD fired him. The new coach was expected to win. Talent played regardless of class year.

The team went from a country club atmosphere to coming out of the locker room or off the bus like a well oiled military unit.