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What's your opinion being a good player on a bad team?

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  • What's your opinion being a good player on a bad team?

    My son is 10, he has always been playing 1-2 years up. This season our private lesson coach is starting a new 10U team, wanted him so he is playing for him. Coach is great, but the kids need a lot of work, half of them should not be in travel. So instead of playing competitive teams/games, we are playing these subpar teams and still get crushed. My son plays shortstop whole time, he is also best pitcher, he made all his plays in the last few games. But the team/games overall looks like a rec AA game. What's your opinion of being best player on a struggling team?

  • #2
    Is he having fun? That's probably the first thing to ask. If so, at 10, he's probably at the right place.

    IMO there is a balance. It's almost never good to be the best player on a team (in a few situations it may be unavoidable), as it can lead to complacency. It's good for kids to be pushed by other players. I'm thankful (I'm sure that he is too) that my son in his younger years had the opportunity to play on a team with some good players. When he came on, he started at the bottom and had to hit/play his way to the top of the lineup. It was good for him, nothing is given, it's earned.

    You want your kid in an environment that he has to earn it, develop competitiveness. Maybe 10 is too early, but soon after that it's something that needs to be developed. Again, the question...is he having fun? I can't imagine getting crushed nearly every game would have been fun for my kid, but every kid is different.
    Ty Cobb-"Every great batter works on the theory that the pitcher is more afraid of him than he is of the pitcher."

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    • #3
      IMO, it's OK if you're a pitcher but not too great for players at the other positions.

      For a pitcher, the plate is still 17 inches at every level you play at. You'll get lots of opportunities to pitch, and you won't have good defense behind you, so you will have to strike guys out and learn not to pout when your defense makes errors. You are playing against subpar batters, but you have greater pressure to strike them all out, so IMO it kind of evens out. Maybe it's even better.

      For the other positions... as a batter, you will be facing subpar pitching, so that is not good developmentally, unless you really need the confidence boost. And poor defense is contagious, IMO.

      I think the worst part about the "bad team" is playing with kids who just don't care enough to improve their obviously flawed game. That can be disheartening, and there's no internal competition to force your kid to "rise above".

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      • #4
        Originally posted by chief2791 View Post
        Is he having fun? That's probably the first thing to ask. If so, at 10, he's probably at the right place.

        IMO there is a balance. It's almost never good to be the best player on a team (in a few situations it may be unavoidable), as it can lead to complacency. It's good for kids to be pushed by other players. I'm thankful (I'm sure that he is too) that my son in his younger years had the opportunity to play on a team with some good players. When he came on, he started at the bottom and had to hit/play his way to the top of the lineup. It was good for him, nothing is given, it's earned.

        You want your kid in an environment that he has to earn it, develop competitiveness. Maybe 10 is too early, but soon after that it's something that needs to be developed. Again, the question...is he having fun? I can't imagine getting crushed nearly every game would have been fun for my kid, but every kid is different.
        Thanks, he is having fun when he making good defensive plays. Not fun for losing badly, and not many good pitches to hit off.

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        • #5
          How well are they coached (teaching fundamentals at a level they can grasp, and working for player development at this age are the most important things, IMO) and how well does your son like playing for his instructor? If the answer is a negative for either, I would probably be looking elsewhere.
          Put your junk in your pocket!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by bbrages View Post
            IMO, it's OK if you're a pitcher but not too great for players at the other positions.

            For a pitcher, the plate is still 17 inches at every level you play at. You'll get lots of opportunities to pitch, and you won't have good defense behind you, so you will have to strike guys out and learn not to pout when your defense makes errors. You are playing against subpar batters, but you have greater pressure to strike them all out, so IMO it kind of evens out. Maybe it's even better.

            For the other positions... as a batter, you will be facing subpar pitching, so that is not good developmentally, unless you really need the confidence boost. And poor defense is contagious, IMO.

            I think the worst part about the "bad team" is playing with kids who just don't care enough to improve their obviously flawed game. That can be disheartening, and there's no internal competition to force your kid to "rise above".
            That's my concern too, the teams we are playing, the pitches are subpar, there are few strikes to hit off, and because of that, the umpires are calling an insane big strike zone. For the top teams pitchers are already doing changeups, these teams are struggling to throw strikes.

            Being the best pitcher, my son didn't pitch yet, because we have no one else can play short (make routine plays).

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            • #7
              Originally posted by 2022dad View Post
              How well are they coached (teaching fundamentals at a level they can grasp, and working for player development at this age are the most important things, IMO) and how well does your son like playing for his instructor? If the answer is a negative for either, I would probably be looking elsewhere.
              The coaching is great, coach focus a lot on fundamentals. But the execution is not there, I understand it takes time, but for my son he is ready, I don't want to spend 2-3 years to wait for other kids to catch up.

              Coach also has a 13U team, initially we practice with both teams, my son is also one of the best of the 13u infielder. We played one game with them for 13U on big field, he did great at 2B, made all plays, the 13u players liked him and they want him to play with them. I had hoped coach would let him play 13u games too since they are very tight handed, but that's not the case.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by switchhitter View Post
                Being the best pitcher, my son didn't pitch yet, because we have no one else can play short (make routine plays).
                ???
                on a bad team, pitcher (and IMO catcher) is more critical than shortstop...

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by bbrages View Post

                  ???
                  on a bad team, pitcher (and IMO catcher) is more critical than shortstop...
                  I also don't want the team rely on him to pitch, there is no desense behind him. The coach want to use him more as a closer in important games, which is what I want too.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by switchhitter View Post
                    ...my son is also one of the best of the 13u infielder. We played one game with them for 13U on big field, he did great at 2B, made all plays...
                    Sorry, but either your son is an absolute stud, or the 13U team is not very good. There's a huge difference in size, speed, and skill bw a good 13U and a 10U. Also, the social development of 13YO is totally different than a 10YO. One is still a child and the other is on the cusp of being an adult (or at least thinking they are).
                    Put your junk in your pocket!

                    Comment


                    • #11

                      not many good pitches to hit off.
                      This is another downside to being a good player on a bad team. They'll pitch around you. How much fun is that? My son HATED rec regular season, just didn't get much chance to hit, you had rec league Joe Torre's that thought that winning the rec league title was equivalent to the world series. All-stars (which was the reason he played rec) was a bit different story, there were other kids around him that could hit. On most of his TB teams, if you pitched around him there was someone right behind him that would make you pay.

                      Ty Cobb-"Every great batter works on the theory that the pitcher is more afraid of him than he is of the pitcher."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by 2022dad View Post

                        Sorry, but either your son is an absolute stud, or the 13U team is not very good. There's a huge difference in size, speed, and skill bw a good 13U and a 10U. Also, the social development of 13YO is totally different than a 10YO. One is still a child and the other is on the cusp of being an adult (or at least thinking they are).
                        The 13u is not very good. But the executions are much better than our 10u team. And supprisingly, the opposing 13u team is just as bad.
                        Last edited by switchhitter; 09-14-2018, 07:47 AM.

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                        • #13
                          IME, most 10U pitchers are lucky to find the plate 50% of the time, even with the huge strike zones they are given at that age.
                          Put your junk in your pocket!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            at 10, i see the order of priority being:

                            1. a good group of kids and parents
                            2. a well coached and well run team
                            3. a team of comparable skill

                            so, beware of moving for #3 if you have #1 and #2, because that grass might not be greener elsewhere. but, i do think kids are better off playing on teams where the variance is talent isn't too wide. too far off the median in either direction leads to problems.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by 2022dad View Post
                              IME, most 10U pitchers are lucky to find the plate 50% of the time, even with the huge strike zones they are given at that age.
                              You are absolutely right.

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