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View Full Version : Baseball People? 11 year old baseball league ethics question


Maristar210
06-16-2008, 09:15 AM
My son's team faced a rival team on Saturday and when the game was on the line in the next to last inning and two men on they decided to intentially walk my number four batter (I am the coach).

While I understand the reasoning I wondered if it was the right thing to do at age 11. I have never seen this in 12 years of coaching except at the high school level. My parents were calling out "Let him hit" I calmed them down and said it was part of the game...

I wondered if at age 11 coaches should be pitching around certain players?

Opinions welcomed

TIA - Steve

(PS. It backfired, the number five hitter got a double, my son's team won 11-9)

Ben
06-16-2008, 09:27 AM
I would probably agree it is part of the game / strategy. The decision is at what point (age) is winning more important than having fun.... You're gonna get viewpoints both ways on that probably.

I do recall intentionally walking a few people in little league when I played (maybe 6th - 8th grade - don't remember exactly). I was the catcher - felt like we were in the big leagues....

Willski
06-16-2008, 09:30 AM
I guess at some point it becomes more about winnnig and less about teaching. I'm not sure what age that is.

shepherd
06-16-2008, 09:32 AM
How did the batter feel about it? Maybe he was flattered that they feared him enough to purposely walk in a run rather than face his bat of doom.

wakeX2wake
06-16-2008, 09:35 AM
i say it's part of the game... kids might as well learn early that winning will become more and more important... i can't imagine what it did for your #4 batter's confidence... you have to feel like big poppi to get intentionally walked

bcampbe7
06-16-2008, 09:42 AM
Part of the game. I have never seen so much strategy and rivalry in sports till I moved down South to Tennessee. Seems like these kids are playing football and baseball about the same time they start walking. Pretty crazy to me.

To me it would be more important to know that your team handled the win without mocking the other team for trying some "big league" strategy. :cool:

RexDog1
06-16-2008, 09:47 AM
i say it's part of the game... kids might as well learn early that winning will become more and more important... i can't imagine what it did for your #4 batter's confidence... you have to feel like big poppi to get intentionally walked

Yep it is part of the game……. I am so over this ………. What I call pussifing Americas kids “Oh we don’t keep score”:confused: WTH it is a game and there is a winner and there is a loser….. Deal with it :mad:

Steve you did the right thing, it is part of the game

mrprostar
06-16-2008, 09:55 AM
I was intentionally walked in tee ball. We all learned the importance of it.

But seriously, I played baseball and soccer for a long time and the earlier I learned that it was about competition the better it was for me. I played soccer through college and baseball through high school and it was the competition that drove me to get better not the fact that I had fun everytime I played. Believe me training for soccer in college is no where near fun but I did to succeed in the competition.

Prostar Rich
06-16-2008, 10:28 AM
Is the league an instructional league or a competitive league? If it's the latter than by all means the other coach can make the calls he feels he needs to do. If the league is instrcutional than it was a very poor call on the other coachs behalf.

Prostar Rich

flipper
06-16-2008, 10:33 AM
I'd say part of the game, and strategy behind the game. I've seen it done it little league many times.

etakk7
06-16-2008, 10:33 AM
in a fairly serious little league, 11 years old is right around the time they are potentially qualifying for the little league world series. So in that way I can't blame the strategy.

In Madison, WI where I came from I did the whole T ball thing and started little league at 9. 9-10 that probably wouldn't fly but by 11 you move to a bigger field and the game gets more serious.

wakeX2wake
06-16-2008, 10:50 AM
Yep it is part of the game……. I am so over this ………. What I call pussifing Americas kids “Oh we don’t keep score”:confused: WTH it is a game and there is a winner and there is a loser….. Deal with it :mad:

Steve you did the right thing, it is part of the game

i agree here too... my mom always told me i'd remember the fun i had not wether i won or lost... WRONG!!!... i remember every team i was on that won a lot fo games b/c WINNING IS FUN... the more important lessons (IMHO as a non-parent) to learn are how to win and how to lose... if you lose b/c someone's better... then use it to fuel your training... if you lose b/c of a mistake... learn how to eliminate the possibility for it next time... if you win... learn how to accept it w/ class and dignify your opponent and remember what you did so you can beat the crap out of them next time too

Maristar210
06-16-2008, 11:07 AM
How did the batter feel about it? Maybe he was flattered that they feared him enough to purposely walk in a run rather than face his bat of doom.

Batter was pi$$ed. Took me a whole inning to calm him down. He called the pitcher a different word for cat.

shepherd
06-16-2008, 11:12 AM
Batter was pi$$ed. Took me a whole inning to calm him down. He called the pitcher a different word for cat.

Tell the batter to quit crying, that's life boy.
And give him a big pat on the back for calling out the pitcher, though I guess he should have called the other coach the pussy. I bet the pitcher wasn't happy about the call either.

flipper
06-16-2008, 11:12 AM
Batter was pi$$ed. Took me a whole inning to calm him down. He called the pitcher a different word for cat.

Kitty? 8p

I know it's frustrating, but it a lesson learned for the whole team. They'll learn strategy, how to counter it, and how to stay calm and keep their head in the game to come out on top.

Maristar210
06-16-2008, 11:14 AM
I should have clarified; It's a Recreational / Instruction league. Many of the kids' biggest concern is "who has snack? and what is it?"

We also have a competitive "Travel League" this is often done in this league but it is a competitive league.

The kids did not rub it in anyone's face after the game although the boys mother did walk over to the other bench and give them her "parting thoughts". I told her that was not what I would have recommended she had done and she said she didn't care.

Interesting resonses.

Seems the parents and coaches care more about win loss records these days than the kids do? :shocked:

ShamrockIV
06-16-2008, 11:18 AM
Yep it is part of the game……. I am so over this ………. What I call pussifing Americas kids “Oh we don’t keep score”:confused: WTH it is a game and there is a winner and there is a loser….. Deal with it :mad:

Steve you did the right thing, it is part of the game


i agree!!

this no score everybody wins nobosy loses crap is getting old!!!

when we were kids and you never got to play or got picked what did u do?? u got better cause u worked at it!!

these days kids do not care about sports cause all the fun is out!!!!!

losing sukz!!! winning is fun!!!!!

teach them he way to play the game !!

i do not let my kids beat me at anything!!! if they win they earned it and deserve to feel good about it!!!!!!

wakeX2wake
06-16-2008, 11:26 AM
haha everybody wanting an America w/ a thicker skin keep them coming... (i'm going WAY out here but...) i honestly think all of it is a result of this "PC" place we live in... "aww i don't want little johnny to feel bad b/c he lost so we won't keep score"... SCREW THAT... he got his butt kicked so he has 2 choices... 1) remove the boot from his deriaire and get better or find a way to win or 2) find something he's better at... if weaknesses aren't exploited for them young they'll be way behind when they're older trying to overcome them

flipper
06-16-2008, 11:28 AM
I should have clarified; It's a Recreational / Instruction league. Many of the kids' biggest concern is "who has snack? and what is it?"

We also have a competitive "Travel League" this is often done in this league but it is a competitive league.

The kids did not rub it in anyone's face after the game although the boys mother did walk over to the other bench and give them her "parting thoughts". I told her that was not what I would have recommended she had done and she said she didn't care.

Interesting resonses.

Seems the parents and coaches care more about win loss records these days than the kids do? :shocked:

So true. I hate how some parents take the fun out of it for the kids.

trickskier
06-16-2008, 12:44 PM
Steve,

As you know my son's been playing baseball since he was 4. It's unbelievable how the parents get so wrapped up in these games like it's a life or death situation. I told him the day it's not fun anymore it's time to quit. So far he's having a lot of fun and enjoys the coaches.

As for your question.................I agree with everyone else, it's part of the game strategy. About the only time I've seen an intentional walk in Babe Ruth was during State Tournaments. In my opinion, no different than putting in a pinch hitter to try and win.

I also agree with Rexdog1...................It's a game, there has to be a winner and a loser or there is no reason to play. However, I do believe in good sportsmanship and being a humble winner and graceful loser.

milkmania
06-16-2008, 02:09 PM
our 10 year old team dominated the weekend's traveling games this weekend (4 games)

all the way up until we were in the finals and our coach got ejected to the parking lot... tight game, umpire called a kid safe at homeplate, our catcher blocked the plate, the runner never touched the plate and got tagged.

coach got ejected for coming up to the plate immediately after the play.....
kids hadn't moved yet.
pointed to the umpire that the kid still had not touched the plate.


came home with 2nd. place trophy..... the kids were really upset!
but had completely forgotten about it after we went to eat

came home with a cool shirt:cool:

JohnE
06-16-2008, 02:18 PM
I guess I disagree with everyone here if I'm understanding the "it's part of the game" correctly. I think they should have pitched to him in a freakin 11 year old little league game.

Maristar210
06-16-2008, 02:50 PM
I guess I disagree with everyone here if I'm understanding the "it's part of the game" correctly. I think they should have pitched to him in a freakin 11 year old little league game.

John,

That what I was kind of thinking especially considering it was thier second to last game of the year and they had second place wrapped up at 6-5 but no way to catch the top team who was 8-3 at the time. The game was truly meaningless for them in terms of the playoffs.

I say let the kids decide the game not the coaches. us coaches need to guide them into the best position to win but then let them win the game. I spend three hours a week calculating stats and planning lineups based up expectations, we practice hard too but when it's game time I offer positive coaching and let the kids determine the outcome.

We have more than one coach who will call a kid out or safe before the UMP makes a ruling. This often intimidates a 15 year old UMP as you might imagine.

Keep em coming !!!

milkmania
06-16-2008, 02:51 PM
I guess I disagree with everyone here if I'm understanding the "it's part of the game" correctly. I think they should have pitched to him in a freakin 11 year old little league game.


I don't like "pitch-out" at any age.....
it's a contest between the pitcher and batter! not the coaches

also, in our USSSA division...... the batter doesn't even have to be pitched to in order to be intentionally walked:mad:

milkmania
06-16-2008, 02:55 PM
John,

We have more than one coach who will call a kid out or safe before the UMP makes a ruling. This often intimidates a 15 year old UMP as you might imagine.


the other team this weekend used dirty tactics this weekend.... 1st. base coach very loudly telling his running to lead off, more, more, more! while the pitcher was set
trying to draw the balk

mastercraft1995
06-16-2008, 05:58 PM
So let me get this straight you walked the #4 hitter with the bases loaded? Tell me how that is good strategy? If you have an open base then yea walk him but if you don't have a place to put him then you have to pitch to him.

That tells me you have zero confidence in your pitcher (your coaching ability). I wonder how YOUR player felt and your pitchers parents felt after the game. If I was the kids family I would be happy that you lost because that is terrible coaching.

Tell me the last time you saw a HS, College or Majors manager walk a guy with the bases loaded.

I wish the kid would of jacked a homer of your pitcher. But a double is still pretty good.

mastercraft1995
06-16-2008, 06:00 PM
My bad it was the other coach but I still stand behind that it was stupid.

tex
06-16-2008, 07:05 PM
My son's team faced a rival team on Saturday and when the game was on the line in the next to last inning and bases were loaded they decided to intentially walk my number four batter (I am the coach).

While I understand the reasoning I wondered if it was the right thing to do at age 11. I have never seen this in 12 years of coaching except at the high school level. My parents were calling out "Let him hit" I calmed them down and said it was part of the game...

I wondered if at age 11 coaches should be pitching around certain players?

Opinions welcomed

TIA - Steve

(PS. It backfired, the number five hitter got a double, my son's team won 11-9)

It was about teaching-Next time they will pitch around your #5 and wow does he feel cool now!

Maristar210
06-16-2008, 08:49 PM
So let me get this straight you walked the #4 hitter with the bases loaded? Tell me how that is good strategy? If you have an open base then yea walk him but if you don't have a place to put him then you have to pitch to him.

That tells me you have zero confidence in your pitcher (your coaching ability). I wonder how YOUR player felt and your pitchers parents felt after the game. If I was the kids family I would be happy that you lost because that is terrible coaching.

Tell me the last time you saw a HS, College or Majors manager walk a guy with the bases loaded.

I wish the kid would of jacked a homer of your pitcher. But a double is still pretty good.


Whoops...

I meant....

They walked the bases full by walking my number 4 batter. Sorry about that, 1st base was open.

DOH !!!!!!

Sorry I was in a hurry during the re-clarification....

TX.X-30 fan
06-16-2008, 09:10 PM
I guess I disagree with everyone here if I'm understanding the "it's part of the game" correctly. I think they should have pitched to him in a freakin 11 year old little league game.




Exactly. (Ric post) ;)

Summerall
06-16-2008, 09:37 PM
He should have had his pitcher throw at him instead of walking him.

lanier92prostar
06-16-2008, 10:34 PM
Steve,
We have a developmental football team for the High School. The past 3 years we had a kid who dominated the 6th grade league and the 7th grade league. He was bigger and faster than the rest of the kids. He moved before the 8th grade season and the 8th grade team lost all their games after winning the championship the previous 2 years. Why? because the coaches did no coaching, they just wanted to win so everything was planned around this one kid. Other players did not develop talent. I know what everyone else has said is true about if we are keeping score, then we are always playing to win. That is true to some degree, but IMO as a former High School coach, we are doing kids a disservice by only playing to win. All youth sports teams should be geared around developing talent. This is what benefits the High School teams and possibly the college teams. I think you are right by the way you are coaching and I like the statement someone made about letting the kids determine the outcome. Just my :twocents:

Summerall
06-16-2008, 10:47 PM
Are you people dense?

Maristar210 did not pitch around the guy - the other coach did.

lanier92prostar
06-16-2008, 10:58 PM
Are you people dense?

Maristar210 did not pitch around the guy - the other coach did.

Read my post. I applauded 210 for the way he is coaching his team.
By the way, nice avatar. Had one tonight.

milkmania
06-16-2008, 11:52 PM
OK, since we're on the subject of high school coaches........

my son's little league coach "Kevin" was a professional ball player
New Yorks Mets & Atlanta Braves.

Our indoor practice facility is owned by this guy "Ryan", and operated by his brother/manager "Jay".
June 3, 1991: Drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 25th round of the 1991 amateur draft, but did not sign.
June 1, 1992: Drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 23rd round of the 1992 amateur draft. Player signed May 21, 1993.
December 21, 2005: Granted Free Agency.
January 13, 2006: Signed as a Free Agent with the Philadelphia Phillies.
August 7, 2006: Traded by the Philadelphia Phillies with cash to the Cincinnati Reds for a player to be named later. The Cincinnati Reds sent Zac Stott (minors) (August 9, 2006) to the Philadelphia Phillies to complete the trade.
October 31, 2006: Granted Free Agency.
January 10, 2007: Signed as a Free Agent with the St. Louis Cardinals.






well anyway, our little league coach "Kevin" was hired tonight to coach high school baseball under provisional certificate.... he's taking online classes, I maintain his home computer, print his lesson plans for his wife to work on and submit.



Wonder how often this type of thing happens?

lanier92prostar
06-17-2008, 07:01 AM
More than you think.

djhuff
06-17-2008, 07:53 AM
All this not keeping score crap is just to make the parents feel good about their kids. Every parent wants to think their kid is an all star, which is why when they don't keep score, their kid is always a winner. Believe me though, the kids are keeping score, and know who won. The also know that little Johnny isn't as good as the parents think he is.
This feel good crap is just for the parents, doesn't affect the kids in any way (could make it worse since they keep score in their heads, there is no clear cut winner, and arguements ensue).

When I played little league, we had a tryout day before the season started, and the coaches got together later that week and "drafted" their teams. You better believe that it was all about winning, and the best players played the majority of the innings (unless you were the coach's son).

Maristar210
06-17-2008, 08:22 AM
All this not keeping score crap is just to make the parents feel good about their kids. Every parent wants to think their kid is an all star, which is why when they don't keep score, their kid is always a winner. Believe me though, the kids are keeping score, and know who won. The also know that little Johnny isn't as good as the parents think he is.
This feel good crap is just for the parents, doesn't affect the kids in any way (could make it worse since they keep score in their heads, there is no clear cut winner, and arguements ensue).

When I played little league, we had a tryout day before the season started, and the coaches got together later that week and "drafted" their teams. You better believe that it was all about winning, and the best players played the majority of the innings (unless you were the coach's son).

This is how we run this league. Evaluation day followed by draft day. Only difference is kids sit a maximum of two innings per game. We try to stragegize the poor players defensive placement to overcome this. Two of my thirteen kids don't want to be on the field, thier dads want them to play, so they play. They don't pay attention and most importantly they don't care.

wsrobert
06-17-2008, 09:19 AM
I've never liked intentional walking even in the majors. I think if you are afraid of a batter, then just pitch around him, but you should still have to throw with the catcher down behind the plate. I really don't agree with it in 11 year old ball. I do agree that there is an age where you move from teaching to winning, but I don't think it's 11.

mlay
06-17-2008, 01:09 PM
Just my two cents. I coach my sons 9-11 age. I agree that its part of the game, however, if its Spring league and competitive, good call, if its Fall ball and instructional time for new beginners let him hit, let the players field it. I also agree that the "we don't keep score" statement is just plain wrong...ask any player at anytime during the game the score and they can tell you. Parents may not want to keep score but I guarantee you the kids are.

RexDog1
06-17-2008, 02:23 PM
Steve
You are the Coach, You are the person who is putting in the time to coach their kids, and You were the person who volunteered to be the coach……………. Next time the parents speak up to Coach the team when the game is going on……????? :rolleyes: After the game, not in front of the kids take some time to talk to the parents…. very com “talk” about You are the coach…. and it would be a big help if they should keep their big mouth shut and let you do the coaching …………… it is the parents living through their kids……… you know???? the softball guy or girl ……………………. The guy who takes a softball beer league like it is the pros……. It is for the kids….. not their parent’s sounds like you are handling it right………..

just my :twocents:

FrankSchwab
06-17-2008, 03:28 PM
C'mon guys.

As the kid, getting intentionally walked and learning how to deal with it is the same as:
- striking out and learning how to deal with it
- hitting a home run and learning how to deal with it
- Having a home run hit against you and learning how to deal with it
- making a fielding error and learning how to deal with it
- getting hit by a pitch and learning how to deal with it.
- Losing and learning how to deal with it
- Winning and learning how to deal with it
Doesn't really matter what league you're in, you need to learn how to deal with all aspects of the game. A kid calling the opposing pitcher names because of an intentional walk called by the other coach has some learning to do.

As the coach, it may have been a poor choice depending on the normal traditions of the league you're playing in. Maybe the other coach is new, and didn't understand the local traditions - a beer and a discussion might be in order. In any case, the rulebook is the ultimate arbitor, trumping local tradition, so he had "right" on his side.

If the league doesn't want coaches to make those kinds of decisions, they have the responsibility of either training the coach properly, or putting it in the local rulebook.

/frank

wakeX2wake
06-17-2008, 04:32 PM
quick and funny story...

my Cousin's son was playing in a 9-10 yr old league game and a kid (who apparently he had playground friction with) hit him with a pitch... Lane threw his bat and helmet down and pointed at the pitcher and started yelling at him from the batter's box... before Lane could get anywhere the coach was out there walked Lane to 1st base and took him out of the game in the 2nd inning... first you have to realize Lane is the short stop and lives for baseball... watches sportscenter religiously etc etc... well as soon as Lane got to first base the coach sent him to the dugout to be replaced by a pinch runner (let's say not the team's greatest athlete)... by which Lane had to make his way back to the dugout by walking the striaght line right beside the mound w/ his head down for getting yanked... w/ in minutes the coach and his dad are in the dugout w/ him crying his eyes out (over getting pulled from the game) getting his butt chewed out for his outburst... one of the funnier things i've seen in a while... i'm glad the coach and my cousin made an example of this little man

endl
06-17-2008, 04:48 PM
Just my two cents. I coach my sons 9-11 age. I agree that its part of the game, however, if its Spring league and competitive, good call, if its Fall ball and instructional time for new beginners let him hit, let the players field it. I also agree that the "we don't keep score" statement is just plain wrong...ask any player at anytime during the game the score and they can tell you. Parents may not want to keep score but I guarantee you the kids are.
I also coach a 9 year old recreational league team, and its in a very competitive ball park. I won a game this year by having my pitcher walk a number 4 hitter. Pitcher/catcher executed the intentional walk perfect We came back and won the game in the bottom of the inning. I had reservations as well but if its live arm and they can bunt, steal ect. thats another step in the game.

After all baseball is a game of strategy.

Naste Craft
06-17-2008, 06:40 PM
100% YES

I played pro baseball, so I consider myself to be an a little bit of an expert. I got walked all the time as a kid. He should take it as a compliment, that the other coach respects him that much, plus it sets up a force at any base that just good baseball. I believe you need to teach the kids the way of the game at a young age. The more they understand the mental side of the game the better. I also will never let my son play in a any league that does not keep score. They need to know if they win or loose.

Naste Craft
06-17-2008, 06:42 PM
I guess I disagree with everyone here if I'm understanding the "it's part of the game" correctly. I think they should have pitched to him in a freakin 11 year old little league game.

So when is it ok to walk someone?

Naste Craft
06-17-2008, 06:53 PM
I've never liked intentional walking even in the majors. I think if you are afraid of a batter, then just pitch around him, but you should still have to throw with the catcher down behind the plate.

They do this all the time...

Its called an unintentional intentional walk. But by doing this you could through a pitch in the zone and give up a hit or through a past ball. Not good when your trying to set up a double play.

Plus the catcher must stay behind the plate until the ball is released from the pitchers hand.

RexDog1
06-18-2008, 11:33 AM
They do this all the time...

Its called an unintentional intentional walk. But by doing this you could through a pitch in the zone and give up a hit or through a past ball. Not good when your trying to set up a double play.

Plus the catcher must stay behind the plate until the ball is released from the pitchers hand.

So when is it ok to walk someone?

100% YES

I played pro baseball, so I consider myself to be an a little bit of an expert. I got walked all the time as a kid. He should take it as a compliment, that the other coach respects him that much, plus it sets up a force at any base that just good baseball. I believe you need to teach the kids the way of the game at a young age. The more they understand the mental side of the game the better. I also will never let my son play in a any league that does not keep score. They need to know if they win or loose.

OH now you post,,,, just because you were a pro baseball player there is no reason to post 3 back to back post you post whore:rolleyes: …………………………
......

:D

Naste Craft
06-18-2008, 07:48 PM
OH now you post,,,, just because you were a pro baseball player there is no reason to post 3 back to back post you post whore …………………………
......

:D

:rolleyes::rolleyes:;)

milkmania
06-19-2008, 02:17 AM
just wanted to post my favorite pic of my 10 year old son with his 3rd. base coach

proud dad moment:o

http://www.therideinstyle.com/brynn.jpg

milkmania
06-19-2008, 02:23 AM
my son batting:cool:

http://www.therideinstyle.com/brynn.bat.jpg

Maristar210
06-19-2008, 09:49 AM
my son batting:cool:

http://www.therideinstyle.com/brynn.bat.jpg

Good looking swing there Brian. Tell that catcher to get his hand behind his back :D

wakeX2wake
06-19-2008, 10:48 AM
Good looking swing there Brian. Tell that catcher to get his hand behind his back :D

haha yep... got a ring finger on my right hand that hasn't been the same since 13-14 yr olds (Dixie Majors)... had my hand on top of my knee on my shin guard... foul tip and roasted that sucker... bllod went everywhere and it sucked... next to last game of the season and we were undefeated (ace pitching)

great form on the swing... head down, weight even, and hands in there nicely

Maristar210
06-19-2008, 12:18 PM
haha yep... got a ring finger on my right hand that hasn't been the same since 13-14 yr olds (Dixie Majors)... had my hand on top of my knee on my shin guard... foul tip and roasted that sucker... bllod went everywhere and it sucked... next to last game of the season and we were undefeated (ace pitching)

great form on the swing... head down, weight even, and hands in there nicely

Haa I knew I was not the only one. Once this happens you never forget again do you?:D