Game 1 Postmortem
To: (name of other parent coach redacted)
From: Bob Donlon
Hey (other parent coach redacted):
Here’s my summary of game 1 from my own personal perspective (and you know I’m opinionated and PURE BRONX i.e. “overpassionate sometimes in my written communication” so please take everything with a grain of salt Mr. (name of other parent coach redacted), and apologies in advance for my occasional overzealousness).
Please feel free to use whatever of the below is useful to you in your further communication with the parents, (name of coach redacted), and the league, and please do chuck the rest (or all of it if that works better for you). I’ll keep out of it from there, and let you continue to do the talking to the rest of the folks on all those fronts 😉
IMO, overall, today was a major MAJOR success. The kids all had fun from what I could tell, everyone got their at bats, most if not all kids got on base, the pitchers were outstanding, and there were some great fielding moments where the kids just knew what to do, in very complex situations, with many people yelling at them. That is incredible. If nothing else ever comes out of it, you gotta admit, seeing a kid like (name of kid redacted) or (name of kid redacted) just know instinctively to step on 3rd base like that is pretty awesome at this age. There’s some real brain wiring that’s happening with these kids that are a big part of their education and becoming who they are, and this would be great to highlight in the board meetings as you have a voice in these matters.
Speaking of board meetings, when speaking with (name of school principal redacted), etc, please remember to highlight the fact that we didn’t get nasty and have (name of kid redacted) look at pitches to almost guaranteedly give the (name of school redacted) 2nd Grade Baseball Giants the glory of the walkoff victory today. Holy shit, that would’ve made that other team consisting of all boys, with some older kids, bigger kids in general no matter what the age, coached by a complete dick feel really stupid, wouldn’t it? (name of coach redacted) was literally about to go if I said go and I knew there was no way he or anyone should ever do a dick kind of move like that ever. Holy shit, can you imagine? So of course we both got a hold of ourselves and realized you ALWAYS let the kids swing no matter WHAT the situation. That’s what they CAME for! To SWING THE FRIKKIN BAT!!!
He did not suggest this awful possibility to me BTW, I want to make this very clear. I just proposed a hypothetical to him when (name of kid redacted) came up to bat with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 6th with 2 outs and the game tied, and we were both so tense that he just thought to jump at the chance without thinking about it.
“You realize how easy this would be.”
“You want me to do it?”
“No. No frikking way.”
Holy shit (name of other parent coach redacted) that is a fucking (name of school redacted) culture story if there ever was one. We could’ve coached our kids to victory in a second and instead we let the fat kid swing at a pitch 6 feet over his head and strike out for out number 3. You realized the other team didn’t cheer the (name of team redacted) because they knew they lost the game. Or maybe they did and I didn’t notice it but who cares. But to our kids it was a tie and they are delighted and so am I and I think the rest of the parents are too 🙂
Moving on. (name of coach redacted) rocked it on ALL levels. This guy is gold and we should do whatever we can to keep him or even better see if there is a position for him at (name of school redacted) hint hint. IMO he is shining most notably as follows:
3. Balance of authority and friendliness
4. Reaction when we were treated unfairly in the game today (just gave it back in equal measure and most assholes like that will back off when confronted by someone who wears “don’t fuck with me” all over them).
5. Didn’t cross the line when we had a chance to win the game in a kinda shitty way (ie have (name of kid redacted) look at pitches in order to walk in the winning walkoff run)
Suggestions for follow up to parents:
I would like for us to compose and distribute an information sheet for the parents, so they understand how to behave on and around a baseball field, and how their kids are expected to behave. I realized today that most of the parents didn’t know the “rules of the road” and I may have been unduly harsh when getting people out of the way when there were safety issues at hand (both kids and parents). I’m willing to compose a draft and you can review/edit/send if you wish. I feel it needs to be done before Game 2, however it gets done. I’m not going to get into the variety of things that went on, some of it was people just not knowing what to do, some of was is the typical BS of people not being aware of what is going on around them, and some of it was just plain old people being dumb. Sorry, just callin’ ’em like I see ’em.
I would also like us to communicate with the other (name of school redacted) volunteer coaches what is expected of them at games. If they are assigned a job by (name of coach redacted) or you or me, and they fall down on that, then they shouldn’t be in any game areas whatsoever. I’ll leave it to you and (name of coach redacted) to address as you see fit, however my own suggestion is to have clearly defined roles before gameday for all volunteer coaches, and for people who flake they are not invited back again. It was more of a pain in the ass for me to police the parents today than the kids.
Suggestions for follow up to league:
This having coaches call balls/strikes is only going to lead to tears. It is beyond ridiculous and needs to stop. There is enough affluence in SF at this point to be able to find and pay for at least a high school student to umpire these games. Please don’t make me and you and (name of coach redacted) have to go through what we had to today to keep that asshole in check (if it were your typical wishy-washy SF parents he would’ve walked all over us and the kids would’ve lost by a mile). It was on the line of getting ugly, and I AM PARTLY TO BLAME FOR THAT. I should’ve walked away at one point and just said “Hey (name of coach redacted), this guy is cheating us by consistently calling pitches over batters heads as strikes, so please keep on his ass” and left it at that. I can be obsessive in general, and I let my obsessive tendency get the best of me today. I will do a much better job keeping that in check in the future, and just step back, let (name of coach redacted) do his job, and let the rest go.
(name of my kid redacted) was delighted and exhausted. Holy shit 2 hours! You must be one proud Dad after (name of his kid redacted) threw like that. Holy Mackerel! That was a great starting rotation!