Let me set the stage here. I am a very competitive, sports minded mother. When I found out that I was going to be having three boys, I was very excited about the potential sports that they would play. I could not wait to see them play all kinds of sports. However, since then, they have grown up and are now actually playing.
Last year, Brady played AYSO. All of the kids were his age and about the same skill set so I didn’t really worry about his safety. My husband and I were his coaches so I was more in control.
He is signed up to play AYSO again this year. But, he also wanted to play coach picth baseball. All of the mothers I talked to said, only one sport per season but I wanted him to be able to choose next year and how could he choose if he didn’t play baseball. So for one season (both the other two boys are still too small for sports) I said yes.
Then, practice started.
Last night was the first practice. It has been a beautiful end of winter/beginning of spring this year with 70 degree weather. But, of course, the weather last night was freezing. We get to the field and the first coach gets out of his car and lights up a cigarette in front of the kids. Strike one!
The second coach comes and gets the kids started. No introductions-just looks over the kids he knows and points at the kids he doesn’t and states “What is your name?”. My son doesn’t respond to the first questions because it is not clear who he is asking but does the second time that is name is Brady. At no point did the coaches introduce themselved to my son or to us (his parents). How can you listen to a coach(es) that you don’t even know their names?! Strike two!
No running, no stretching, they just get started. The coach grunts for each of them to get to a place on the field–and at this time he forgets my sons name. Of course, this is an issue. How can you holler, Ball, Brady or Duck, Brady when the ball is coming for him and he is not paying attention (he is 5 years old) when you can’t remember his name?!! Strike three!
They field some balls–teaching no fundamentals–(Brady and the other new kid get one chance to field a ball while the others get multiple balls). They bat. Now, they did work with him more at bat but the coach couldn’t get the ball across the plate (what?!!) He was able to hit balls as we have worked with him on the fundamentals of baseball but not the point.
I am not the first one to beat up on coaches because they are volunteers and I am a volunteer coach for AYSO but maybe you should not coach if you have no skills with kids or baseball.
Also, when Brady signed up for coach pitch, I was under the impression that it was all kids his age swinging and missing and running the wrong way around the bases. Nope–this is hard core. Other players are yelling what the heck to the more seasoned players who are missing balls or striking out. These kids are in third grade–one tried out for Little League and didn’t make it so he is playing with my son who has never even played before. Not cool!! Strike four?!!
The coach did let them go about 30 mintues early since it was freezing which just might be the only positive from the night.
I walk over to the field to get Brady and he is coming towards me crying. I wanted to hear when the next practice was as the coach was telling the kids–never did he tell the parents?! I had to ask another kid about practice. I was concerned about Brady. He was crying and very upset so I asked him what was wrong and he says that his hands were freezing. I asked him why he didn’t put on his gloves and he continued to cry and state that he was afraid that he would get in trouble. Strike five!?!
At this point, I am second guessing keeping him playing baseball. I don’t want him to get the quiting message as I want him to stick things out but this is crazy. Plus, I want him to learn baseball and make a decision about the sport itself and not the insufficient coaching staff. He did state that he liked playing if his hands would have been warmer.
What do I do? Keep him in, sign him out, complain, work with him more myself?
Sports: When should kids play? Should this be my Strike six?