Saturday, August 22, 2009

We're putting the band back together

For months it seems we have been waiting for "the team" (10U) to play. After a spring and summer of 10-11 and 9-10 tourneys we had yet to play with the roster that is going to Nevada. We have been a bad team when we are mixed with other ages. No one seems to claim any leadership and it is too easy to find fault with those that are not normally one of "the team." Well, time to put up or shut up. Starting today we have 3 weekends in a row of the 10U team playing tournaments together. After a weekend off it is off to Nevada. If we stink now there is no one to blame but us.

I am going to give the coach (possibly) more credit than he deserves. We are playing in a tournament that features some weaker competition. This is either serendipitous, or a masterstroke of strategy. Each team we face we should be able to beat. And we did today. The team played well. Not outstanding, not ridiculous, not even spectacular. But they kept control of the game and themselves. Every player on the roster pitched an inning. 11 pitchers in 11 innings. We kept errors to an absolute minimum with only one circus play all day long. Rabbit pitched well, but not brilliant. He played excellent at 1B and fair in RF. He was horrible at the plate, but he was not needed. We won the games 7-3 and 5-2. Neither game was particularly close, or ever in doubt.

In fact, I could see the moment when an opponent gave in. I have seen it happen to our boys often enough that I know it when I see it. They are the #1 seed going into Championship play tomorrow. Game time is 1PM and every arm is available. We should be able to get by our first opponent easily. And yet we have faltered many times before against weaker competition. My hope is that they continue to play well, as a team, and grow in their confidence and ability. Our worst case scenario is 2-1 weekend. It has been quite a while since we have done that well. Realistically, we should be in a battle for the title. What a great start for this team as they prepare for bigger and better things.

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