Do you keep the ball?

A senior on varsity recently hit a home run  (not his first, but not a frequest occurance for this player) and his dad retrieved the ball from the outfield. Assistant coach sent a player out to get it. Dad refused to give it up. Player went back to dug out empty handed and coach reemed him out in front of entire team. Dad heard this, threw ball back to assistant who called him an obscenity.

My son has been fortunate enough to have two no hitters in his varsity career. One was an away game and host school presented him with a game ball, which I thought was very gracious. His second was last night at home, no ball. 

Parents are divided. Some say act like you’ve been there and forget the balls. Others want the momento. A couple offered to pay for any balls they kept, but still no dice.

I thought folks on this site were sure to have opinions. Thoughts?

Original Post

Me and the coach would have words, maybe after the game, maybe right then in front of his players.  No school official is going to curse me in public (or  private).   My son has hit plenty but our coaches still offered every one he hit this year.  Above that, he pitched a no hit, shutout on the road and the opposing coach gave him the game ball after the game.  I thought that was high school sportsmanship at its best.  What did the head coach say?  I think there would have to be a conversation with the head coach or the AD. 

Agree with Sultan.  Bizarre behavior by the coach.  These are young men who work hard - let them enjoy it and keep the memento for goodness sake.  There shouldn't even be a conversation.  This guy reminds me of the "Soup Nazi" from Seinfeld!!  No ball for you!

I don't care if the kid hits a home run every game - if the kid/parent wants the ball, I say they get it.  Some kids/parents don't care, some do.  I get that balls cost money, but in my view your coach handled it very, very poorly.  I'm especially curious about berating the player who came back empty handed - what is the expectation?  Is the kid supposed to wrestle the parent in the outfield to get it back?

9and7dad posted:

I don't care if the kid hits a home run every game - if the kid/parent wants the ball, I say they get it.  Some kids/parents don't care, some do.  I get that balls cost money, but in my view your coach handled it very, very poorly.  I'm especially curious about berating the player who came back empty handed - what is the expectation?  Is the kid supposed to wrestle the parent in the outfield to get it back?

 Made me laugh.  Exactly.  This is even more absurd.  Forget MLB I am going to HS games in Iowa from now on.

I think we should get the address and all send him a new ball so he can give them away. 

It was interesting at the end of the season the coach forgot to bring the box of new balls.  He was caught up in trying to get the field ready and forgot them in his office.  He looked at my son and said do you have one of those homerun balls you got.  My son said how many do you want and dug in his bag which had about 20 balls from various things.  Doesn't mean anything to him anymore.  But a friend of ours' son hit his first one.  The other team went and got it and did not offer to give it to him.  I went to the other dugout as the kid was bringing the ball back and asked the coach if the kid could have it since it was his first.  He gladly gave it.  Our coach tossed them a new ball to replace it and he threw it back.  He said "if we can't afford to give away home run balls to kids who want them, we need to stop playing the game."  That's the truth.

At our HS, behind home and down third base line is wooded with lots of poison ivy.  I don't chase any fowl balls there.  Beyond the fence in left and center is a bike path and beyond that is a pond.  My son was lucky enough to hit one pond shot this year.  I went to retrieve it, but couldn't find it.  It must be swimming with the fishes.  No way I would allow a coach yell at me or my son about a kept home run ball.  That is not right.

We've kept every HR ball, with never a question asked. In fact, we kept the Conference Championship game ball (last out). It is now the shift knob in the boy's manual-transmission Jeep (thanks to some creative work in my shop). Coach was in the wrong, big-time!

-42

It's such a rare occurrence with my son, I still drop the scorebook and try to retrieve a HR even in college (his last 2 before college were inside-the-park..hard to ask for those).  In 2017, one mom got one out of a tree that son hit against rival school. I always have a few bills ready for a ball-chaser if I need to "compensate." That coach described in OP was a jerk, especially with the cursing which accompanied.

Quick story: Son played in a mid-week nonconference game this year. I was ready to tell my wife that I got exercise walking from parking spot to field. As it turned out, I shagged the three HR balls (just a grass lawn behind) that were hit (none were son). The first one was hit by our senior captain (first ever in college). After game I gave the three of them their HR ball and each a program from game. None of their parents could attend and I knew it meant something to the players (esp. captain) if not moreso their parents, all of whom I knew. As for the exercise.. it's all good.

kio posted:

At our HS, behind home and down third base line is wooded with lots of poison ivy.  I don't chase any fowl balls there.  Beyond the fence in left and center is a bike path and beyond that is a pond.  My son was lucky enough to hit one pond shot this year.  I went to retrieve it, but couldn't find it.  It must be swimming with the fishes.  No way I would allow a coach yell at me or my son about a kept home run ball.  That is not right.

Happy to say that I have never seen a fowl ball.

kio posted:

At our HS, behind home and down third base line is wooded with lots of poison ivy.  I don't chase any fowl balls there.  Beyond the fence in left and center is a bike path and beyond that is a pond.  My son was lucky enough to hit one pond shot this year.  I went to retrieve it, but couldn't find it.  It must be swimming with the fishes.  No way I would allow a coach yell at me or my son about a kept home run ball.  That is not right.

My son's first HR on a big diamond (he was 14 or 15), and was wind-assisted, ended up over the RF fence in a gully choked with poison ivy and thorn bushes. I spent like 30 minutes tearing my pants and skin to shreds looking for that damn ball. I must have found like 10-15 older ones, but no HR ball. I checked twice. Hell, I contemplated going back the next day and looking, but thankfully, heavy rain was in the forecast. I was in the parking lot and saw the head tournament organizer and mentioned my plight. He said something like "that was your boy?" he reached in a bag and got me a new one. Class act. I was tempted to scuff it a tad and present it as the HR ball but decided against it. It is a proxy first HR on the big diamond ball.

As for the HC and assistant in the OP. NOT a class act.

4T2 posted:

We've kept every HR ball, with never a question asked. In fact, we kept the Conference Championship game ball (last out). It is now the shift knob in the boy's manual-transmission Jeep (thanks to some creative work in my shop). Coach was in the wrong, big-time!

-42

That is awesome!

I have kept every HR ball that my son has hit that can reasonably be expected to be retrieved. My son still plays in MSBL and I have donated a box of baseballs in preseason to every team he has played on since his youth ball days......

I will say that this meant more to me than it did him. As I have an extensive collection. I also know he had raided this stash of baseballs to use in a Homerun Derby Contest in college.....so much for his attachment.      

I'm fairly certain my son has every HR ball he ever hit from 9U thru HS.  He hasn't hit one in college yet, but did get one in the summer league a couple weeks ago.  No idea if he got that one or not.   He also has a nice collection of "logo" balls from all the away teams he's played against over the years in college.  They all have a league stamp on them.  He's a pitcher so he normally doesn't have any issues picking one up somewhere.  He has them in a bucket of some kind now but has plans to build a display for them when he's done with baseball....and has someplace to put them

Golfman25 posted:

Just too many bad coaches out there.    HRs and no hitters are rare accomplishments in HS.  Celebrate them, especially for kids who aren't heading to the "next level."  Many MLB players are getting their "firsts."

When my daughter was in high school the pitcher was a dominating future D1 pitcher. If she kept every no hitter game ball she could have started her own sporting goods store. She pitched five to seven no hitters per season in high school. She pitched ten to twelve per summer. 

With two outs in the last inning of a no hitter the second baseman made an error extending the game. The next hitter got a hit. After the last out the second basemen went to the pitcher and apologized for blowing her no hitter. The pitcher replied, “Don’t worry about it. It’s not like I was pitching a perfect game.”

This pitcher had pitched so many no hitters from 10U travel through high school she only cared about perfect games. 

RJM posted:
Golfman25 posted:

Just too many bad coaches out there.    HRs and no hitters are rare accomplishments in HS.  Celebrate them, especially for kids who aren't heading to the "next level."  Many MLB players are getting their "firsts."

When my daughter was in high school the pitcher was a dominating future D1 pitcher. If she kept every no hitter game ball she could have started her own sporting goods store. She pitched five to seven no hitters per season in high school. She pitched ten to twelve per summer. 

With two outs in the last inning of a no hitter the second baseman made an error extending the game. The next hitter got a hit. After the last out the second basemen went to the pitcher and apologized for blowing her no hitter. The pitcher replied, “Don’t worry about it. It’s not like I was pitching a perfect game.”

This pitcher had pitched so many no hitters from 10U travel through high school she only cared about perfect games. 

I don't do girls sports. 

Golfman25 posted:
RJM posted:
Golfman25 posted:

Just too many bad coaches out there.    HRs and no hitters are rare accomplishments in HS.  Celebrate them, especially for kids who aren't heading to the "next level."  Many MLB players are getting their "firsts."

When my daughter was in high school the pitcher was a dominating future D1 pitcher. If she kept every no hitter game ball she could have started her own sporting goods store. She pitched five to seven no hitters per season in high school. She pitched ten to twelve per summer. 

With two outs in the last inning of a no hitter the second baseman made an error extending the game. The next hitter got a hit. After the last out the second basemen went to the pitcher and apologized for blowing her no hitter. The pitcher replied, “Don’t worry about it. It’s not like I was pitching a perfect game.”

This pitcher had pitched so many no hitters from 10U travel through high school she only cared about perfect games. 

I don't do girls sports. 

It’s the story not the sport.

adbono posted:
kio posted:

At our HS, behind home and down third base line is wooded with lots of poison ivy.  I don't chase any fowl balls there.  Beyond the fence in left and center is a bike path and beyond that is a pond.  My son was lucky enough to hit one pond shot this year.  I went to retrieve it, but couldn't find it.  It must be swimming with the fishes.  No way I would allow a coach yell at me or my son about a kept home run ball.  That is not right.

Happy to say that I have never seen a fowl ball.

You need to get out to more ballparks...  

_5_16_right-field-22fowl22-pole-e1337273578819_417-eat-mor-fowl

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infidel_08 posted:
adbono posted:
kio posted:

At our HS, behind home and down third base line is wooded with lots of poison ivy.  I don't chase any fowl balls there.  Beyond the fence in left and center is a bike path and beyond that is a pond.  My son was lucky enough to hit one pond shot this year.  I went to retrieve it, but couldn't find it.  It must be swimming with the fishes.  No way I would allow a coach yell at me or my son about a kept home run ball.  That is not right.

Happy to say that I have never seen a fowl ball.

You need to get out to more ballparks...  

_5_16_right-field-22fowl22-pole-e1337273578819_417-eat-mor-fowl

I have been to that one many times!

I've posted this before, so if you've seen it... My apologies... 

When he was a kid, we kept a lot of them... I would take them home and dress them up a bit for keepsakes...
 
He's got a small bucket full of them... He emailed me this pic right before he left for college - out of the blue, and said "Thanks Dad, these are REALLY cool..." *snif*
 
IMG_20151213_182118_01
 
He hit one out of the old Dodger Stadium in Vero Beach with a Wood-Bat 2015 summer, and it was just sitting on top of this grass berm in Centerfield... I was looking at it the whole game - it was the only one out there, and it was 'talking' to me the whole night... In the top of the 7th, we were up a few, so I decided to make my way out there before the game was over... I walked from the LF pole to CF along the fence, then had to climb up the berm (it was pretty steep) to fetch it... Game over and I walk back, and it was perfect timing, because he was walking out at the same time... He asks, "Did you get the ball?" I said, "Yepper..." He shook his head, and smiled and I said "What?'"... "You crazy Papi..." We both laughed hard... Anyway, My birthday comes around in mid June and he gives me my gift... It's the ball with a great inscription on it...
 
Birthday-Ball-1
My birthday-ball with a great inscription on it... It's one of the greatest gifts anyone has ever given to me!!

So, YES, you keep the balls!!!

I love Bolt's pictures above!  We don't have quite that sentiment in our house.  However, keewartson did give me his first MiLB HR ball for Mother's Day.

He said, "well Mom, it isn't THE ball, we couldn't find it.  But it IS one from the game".  

I was ok with that!

Then, I told him he was now old enough to know.....

......that his very first HR ball from Little League isn't THE ball either....we couldn't find it but we tried hard and just found another ball to give him.   He  went "What?!  What!?", then laughed!

Get and keep the balls!  (I was never THAT MOM that ran for them, but there were a bunch of dads down the line that would!)

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