Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Jigfishn10

Competitive Spirit

Recommended Posts

This year I was a Little League Manager for the first time. I've been a coach before, but under someone elses agenda. I coached 10-11-12 year olds and our league is split up in 2; Major American League and Major National League. 

 

The American League is for kids who are well skilled, have adapted to the expanded rules from instructional league and is generally more competitive because of the skill level. The National league is for the kids who need more more instruction but play the same rules as their American League counterparts, usually by the end of the season the games become very competitive. Playoffs is when really good ball is played. 

 

Generally, the National League will have more 10 year olds coming up from instructional along with 11 & 12 year olds who generally haven't had as much playing experience - generally the kids have just started playing within the past few years.

 

I coached National League as my 10 Y/O son had just jumped from instructional league. What got my attention was the kids who should have played American League but stayed down. I asked the opposing coaches why the kid wasn't playing up in the league above. At least 3 times I heard the coach saying that the kid didn't want to play because it was "too competitive". Yet, the 3 kids were tearing our league up.

 

My neighbor had her 12 year old in our league, not the best ball player, but certainly skilled enough to play in the upper league. Again, she mentioned that she didn't think he would have fun because it was too competitive.

 

As a kid growig up playing sports, being competitive and playing against kids older was a way to get better and advance to the next level, so I ask: Are we losing our competitive spirit?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess it depends. I have a bunch of little cousins and nieces some are uber competive and play up and others just want to have fun and goof off. For example I have twin cousins. One is going to be all state in anything she does. The other plays all of the same sports but could care less. However when they are just shooting hoops in the driveway they are the same. I do think that we are losing our way a little bit by giving every jimmy and joe a trophy for showing up, or i guess I should say every Aiden and Jayden but that is another rant.

 

I was super competive but i was the youngest of three and hated losing. They never let me win and that made me better. I will admit I am a snob on the golf course. I hate playing with bad players. In my one league if I get paired up with a bad team I just call someone and tell them to pick me up I am going to get drunk. If I am playing a good team I never drink and play balls to the wall.

 

I guess to answer your question I think that it has always been this way. I think people are naturally self-motivated or not, however we just now except the people that don't care if they win or lose more.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How many kids, total, between the 2 leagues?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When my son was in Cal and Babe I helped coach but we only had 3-4 teams of 12-13 kids, depending on how many signed up. So we just mixed the kids together as best we could to not stack any given team. I guess it would be difficult to fairly mix 9 teams worth of kids.

Well, maybe not. We would start by ranking each kid. Then we would go around the room, taking turns like a draft, and each coach would choose a kid and we would widdle it down from there.

I guess what I'm getting at is has that area ever just completely mixed the kids and not had the 2 different levels?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess it depends. I have a bunch of little cousins and nieces some are uber competive and play up and others just want to have fun and goof off. For example I have twin cousins. One is going to be all state in anything she does. The other plays all of the same sports but could care less. However when they are just shooting hoops in the driveway they are the same. I do think that we are losing our way a little bit by giving every jimmy and joe a trophy for showing up, or i guess I should say every Aiden and Jayden but that is another rant.

 

I was super competive but i was the youngest of three and hated losing. They never let me win and that made me better. I will admit I am a snob on the golf course. I hate playing with bad players. In my one league if I get paired up with a bad team I just call someone and tell them to pick me up I am going to get drunk. If I am playing a good team I never drink and play balls to the wall.

 

I guess to answer your question I think that it has always been this way. I think people are naturally self-motivated or not, however we just now except the people that don't care if they win or lose more.

 

You maybe right, I don't recall it being that way growing up in sports.

 

When my son was in Cal and Babe I helped coach but we only had 3-4 teams of 12-13 kids, depending on how many signed up. So we just mixed the kids together as best we could to not stack any given team. I guess it would be difficult to fairly mix 9 teams worth of kids.

Well, maybe not. We would start by ranking each kid. Then we would go around the room, taking turns like a draft, and each coach would choose a kid and we would widdle it down from there.

I guess what I'm getting at is has that area ever just completely mixed the kids and not had the 2 different levels?

 

It's always been split in 2 leagues. There's a huge difference in ability between a 12 y/o player and a 10 y/o player. At the end of each season the league requests new and existing managers to sign up for the next year and are notified of upcoming tryouts for the American League for next season so we can scout the kids. Most of the kids tryout so you can rate each kid. Those who don't tryout will automatically drop to the National League. All kids get drafted in both leagues and because participation is way down, all kids play. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel like these "upper level" leagues often have more competitive parents than children.... not at the fault of the children necessarily. 

just because one isn't driven to play sports at a competitive level does not mean they are not driven.  my brother hated sports of all kinds as a kid, but was nearly forced to play because it's what everyone does in a small town. 

he has zero competitive force or drive for sports, but i've never seen someone so driven to succeed at work.  he works harder and smarter than anyone i know, driven by the desire to be successful and provide for his family.

even for these top level athletes, few if any will ever play above high school ball anyways.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is a lot to be said about being less competitive.  Also to being a big fish in a small pond...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always want to play in competitive games whether it is Basketball, Fishing, Football, or even a freakin' game of UNO with friends at church. But I see alot of times now, especially with younger kids, they don't always have that same, "Hate to lose, win at all costs" spirit. And I think with every one getting rewarded just for showing up is the problem. I don't get people who say they just go out and play to have fun. I mean, you are supposed to have fun but what motivates you to play is to win IMO.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My son is 9 and he moved up to what we call "kid pitch" this year. We live in a small town of 1,500 people and there were 22 boys sign up at this age group. The league coordinator called me and said if I'd I would coach a team then there would be two teams, otherwise they would only have one team of 12. I agreed. He then called me and said they were having a meeting to pick teams. I asked him what time and where. His exact words were "Don't worry, I will take who I want and you can have the rest". Needless to say we are 0-11 and I don't have a boy that has ever pitched a day in his life. Remind you that my son and all the boys on my team have to see these boys on the other team quite often and it isn't pleasant for them. Well the other team is in 4th place out of a 12 team league and their game with us was rained out. They need one win to move into second place based on points and they want to play us tomorrow night. Can you guess what I told them? Can't post it here. Anyway, I am more proud of my group of boys for going out each and every game and giving it their best every time. We had the chance to win about 5 games, we just didn't have the pitching. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat to let these boys know that someone wants them on their team and they can do it.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My son is 9 and he moved up to what we call "kid pitch" this year. We live in a small town of 1,500 people and there were 22 boys sign up at this age group. The league coordinator called me and said if I'd I would coach a team then there would be two teams, otherwise they would only have one team of 12. I agreed. He then called me and said they were having a meeting to pick teams. I asked him what time and where. His exact words were "Don't worry, I will take who I want and you can have the rest". Needless to say we are 0-11 and I don't have a boy that has ever pitched a day in his life. Remind you that my son and all the boys on my team have to see these boys on the other team quite often and it isn't pleasant for them. Well the other team is in 4th place out of a 12 team league and their game with us was rained out. They need one win to move into second place based on points and they want to play us tomorrow night. Can you guess what I told them? Can't post it here. Anyway, I am more proud of my group of boys for going out each and every game and giving it their best every time. We had the chance to win about 5 games, we just didn't have the pitching. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat to let these boys know that someone wants them on their team and they can do it.

 

 

What a crappy thing that coordinator did to you. I tip my hat to you for working with the kids. Maintaining interest in the kids after losing all those games is tough. My son's team last year was in the same boat  - he was 9 and in the same league your coaching in. They lost every game due to a coach who was part time at best and player interest was really bad. We used to go to the field crossing our fingers hoping enough kids would show up to field a team. The league let him go 3/4 of the way into the season. When another parent and I took over, we lost out first game as new coaches by 1 or 2 runs. We won the 2nd game and beat the #1 team in the league. What made it so special was that team was undefeated. Prior to the game we had heard that other teams felt bad for us because we were so pathetic. so we got the kids together for practices to work on fundamental baseball. I never saw a group of kids so happy after that win. It was such a relief to them and gave them confidence. Needless to say we didn't have to cross our fingers on game days anymore.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • fishing forum

    fishing

    fishing forum

    fishing rods

    fishing poles

    fishing

    fishing reels

    fishing poles

    fishing poles

    fishing

    fishing

    bass fish

    fish for bass
    fish

×
×
  • Create New...