Gamers

I was reading one of the threads that is open and got to thinking about gamers.  By that I mean the guys who have bad attitudes, bad work ethic, bad practices, but just know how to turn it on when the lights come on and the umpire yells play ball.  I believe there are three types of successful players.  I say successful because in high school there are rarely more than 4 that fit into either category, the rest are just players who enjoy the game or the glory.  Gamers are just athletically talented and never have to work to be successful at some level of ball.  There are workers who have to put in more time than anyone else to be able to compete and have high skill level through technique.  And then there are the few that have athletic ability and great work ethic to outwork everyone else. 

I also believe there are coaches that are gamers.  They do not know the intricacies of the game but are great recruiters for their college, high school, or travel ball teams.  They put the best players on the field and watch them perform and can make great decisions during the game.  I believe there are teachers of the game who spend hours on drills and working on the game and helping their players become great players but may not be able to coach during the games.   They sometimes have success because they have prepared the players.  Then there are the few coaches who have great game decision making and also do a great job of teaching the game and technique.

But what happens when these two entities collide.  Gamer player and gamer coach together are usually successful.  Gamer player and teacher coach usually butt heads but may be successful if coach can deal with it during practice.  Worker player and gamer coach usually the player feels that the coach is letting them down and has to work harder.  Worker player and teacher coach love each other but may be overkill for the other players. 

In every level of baseball or probably any sport we see these types colliding.  The perfect world is when great players who perform on a high level and work at it get together with a great coach who can teach technique and coach in a game are all on the same team.  The problems come when the expectations of one do not match the expectations of another. 

Just my thoughts after being around the game.  I'm sure we all think our kid and our coach fits into one of these. 

Original Post

I reckon Gamers is what we have always called someone who turns it on for games but not always for everything else.  My older sons played with a kid who did this in football, basketball, and baseball.  If you watched any practices you would wonder why he was playing, much less starting, but when the game started he was a stud.  Frustrated the coaches to death but could not bench him when he knew when to turn it on.

They call my son an end of game gamer in basketball.  He is averaging less than 2 points a game in the first half but has averaged 14 points in the second half of the region games this year with most of those coming in the fourth quarter.  The coach has come to the point of saying now I'm counting on him to crank it up in the fourth.  I don't like it because at some point he will let everybody down and the shots won't fall.  But right now he is riding high and the newspaper keeps saying "Not only can he pitch and hit, but he can shoot."

My definition of a gamer: A player who doesn't hit the metrics. If you watch him take infield he wouldn't stand out above the average player out there. If he went to a showcase he would run a 7.2 , have avg bat speed, avg arm , he would just kind of blend in with most of the kids there.

Then you go watch him play in a game. He is always in the right spot at the right time. He barrel's baseballs even though his swing is "not pretty." He isn't fast but he runs the bases fast. He has a knack of just making things happen in a good way. He plays way above his metrics. He plays hard. He plays like it's his last game every time he takes the field. He's just a freaking gamer. He makes the routine play on a routine basis and every once in awhile he makes a great play. 

Yes these guys exist. They are the guy who no one understands why he walked on at a D2 when they see him 4 years into college and he now has developed the metrics to go along with the "Gamer" in him. He's the guy that got that last walk on spot at P5 program and ends up being the starter that no one heard about coming in. He's the guy that just beats your ass. Your not sure how he did it he just does it. 

Gamer's play with a chip on their shoulder because they have supreme confidence in their ability to "Just Beat You." They are out to prove something every time they step on the field. They know their metrics are not elite. They also know that their ability to play the game like a gamer means they are better than your metrics. Now it doesn't matter if they are not to them. Because in their mind they will prove you wrong. 

 

 

Coach May, you may remember the story of "Mr Hustle". When Pete was signed by the Reds and sent to the "Appy" League. After entering the baseball park he ask the GM where do I hit in the lineup. The GM said "we do not know you, get a hotel and come back tomorrow"! The GM check his name and noticed the letter "NP".

Rose sleep on the trainers table and then up early to the field for the next day's game.

He asked the grounds crew to "water heavy" the infield at 2B so that the other 2B would Look slow. He "choked" the bat and played his way into the lineup and eventually to Riverfront.

When our teams played against Pete Jr I had the opportunity top meet the 1st Mrs Rose and that is another story.

Bob

Coach_May posted:

My definition of a gamer: A player who doesn't hit the metrics. If you watch him take infield he wouldn't stand out above the average player out there. If he went to a showcase he would run a 7.2 , have avg bat speed, avg arm , he would just kind of blend in with most of the kids there.

Then you go watch him play in a game. He is always in the right spot at the right time. He barrel's baseballs even though his swing is "not pretty." He isn't fast but he runs the bases fast. He has a knack of just making things happen in a good way. He plays way above his metrics. He plays hard. He plays like it's his last game every time he takes the field. He's just a freaking gamer. He makes the routine play on a routine basis and every once in awhile he makes a great play. 

Yes these guys exist. They are the guy who no one understands why he walked on at a D2 when they see him 4 years into college and he now has developed the metrics to go along with the "Gamer" in him. He's the guy that got that last walk on spot at P5 program and ends up being the starter that no one heard about coming in. He's the guy that just beats your ass. Your not sure how he did it he just does it. 

Gamer's play with a chip on their shoulder because they have supreme confidence in their ability to "Just Beat You." They are out to prove something every time they step on the field. They know their metrics are not elite. They also know that their ability to play the game like a gamer means they are better than your metrics. Now it doesn't matter if they are not to them. Because in their mind they will prove you wrong. 

 

 

You just described my son....   In showcase, His exit velocity off the tee is 89/90, his IF Velo is 79/80, run's a 7.5....  But his exits are clearly in the 100s on game day (flightscope), I've used timers on coaches eye with distance and have calculated IF velo as high as 90 on a do or die from 3B to Home plate.  He legs out triples, steals a base at least once a game and will make a 3B slow roller play like a seasoned veteran.  He practices good enough to be a 4 hole hitter and starting 3B, and he's always the go to pitcher when there's trouble or to close.   

The Dilema;  He's not flashy / sexy (well, he thinks he is...)  So, how do you get recruiters to take notice?   It seams they rely on showcase numbers, or recruiting video and generally don't attend as many games as we'd think.  When they do, it always seems to me that they are there to see the sexy recruit that's good, but shows better than they really are.

He plays at a large school and is just now going into a starting varsity role as a Jr...   

Funny thing is, he has a club ball reputation as a player you fear (respect) and is constantly interacting with the "flashy" highly recruited players who he knows and they know him with mutual respect.

What are your thoughts:

Is it just about reaching out and being persistent?

Is it just about having to "wait your turn" and put up the Varsity numbers?  Note: 5A JV Lifetime batting average is .535 and he basically sweeps the awards....

I'm not worried, he's very good... but I do wonder if being a gamer holds him back a little.

Robrod posted:
Coach_May posted:

My definition of a gamer: A player who doesn't hit the metrics. If you watch him take infield he wouldn't stand out above the average player out there. If he went to a showcase he would run a 7.2 , have avg bat speed, avg arm , he would just kind of blend in with most of the kids there.

Then you go watch him play in a game. He is always in the right spot at the right time. He barrel's baseballs even though his swing is "not pretty." He isn't fast but he runs the bases fast. He has a knack of just making things happen in a good way. He plays way above his metrics. He plays hard. ...

Yes these guys exist. They are the guy who no one understands why he walked on at a D2 when they see him 4 years into college and he now has developed the metrics to go along with the "Gamer" in him. He's the guy that got that last walk on spot at P5 program and ends up being the starter that no one heard about coming in. He's the guy that just beats your ass. Your not sure how he did it he just does it. 

...They know their metrics are not elite. They also know that their ability to play the game like a gamer means they are better than your metrics. ...

 

 

You just described my son....   In showcase, His exit velocity off the tee is 89/90, his IF Velo is 79/80, run's a 7.5....  But his exits are clearly in the 100s on game day (flightscope), I've used timers on coaches eye with distance and have calculated IF velo as high as 90 on a do or die from 3B to Home plate.  He legs out triples, steals a base at least once a game and will make a 3B slow roller play like a seasoned veteran.  He practices good enough to be a 4 hole hitter and starting 3B, and he's always the go to pitcher when there's trouble or to close.   

The Dilema;  He's not flashy / sexy (well, he thinks he is...)  So, how do you get recruiters to take notice?   It seams they rely on showcase numbers, or recruiting video and generally don't attend as many games as we'd think.  When they do, it always seems to me that they are there to see the sexy recruit that's good, but shows better than they really are.

He plays at a large school and is just now going into a starting varsity role as a Jr...   ...   What are your thoughts:

...

I'm not worried, he's very good... but I do wonder if being a gamer holds him back a little.

If you have an awesome stock car, look to enter it in the best stock car races.  Don't enter it in formula one races. 

If you have a really smart, loyal hunting dog, take it hunting.  Don't try to enter it in a greyhound race.

If you're casting with a 7' spinning rod and 6 lb test line, fish in the local pond, don't go ocean fishing for Marlin. 

Next year, after a year of growth and development, you might have a different car/dog/fishing rig.  For now, no matter how much you like the positive attributes, it is what it is.

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