Thursday, January 28, 2010

Spring Training - and "What Happened Since October"

Well, let us get the big news out early. We have left Blue Wave as of the end of February. After Paso we really slowed down and if I recall correctly we only played in 3 tournaments over 3 months. There were many more opportunities, but we were very busy with family commitments over the holidays. Of the team that went to Paso, only 4 boys are left on the roster, including Rabbit. This is the nature of the beast at this age group I guess, and I do not envy the task that the coach has in integrating new players on an almost weekly basis anymore. The bottom line was that we were ready for a change, and as I reread my previous entries it appears to be a long time coming.

That being said, I want to be perfectly clear. Blue Wave Baseball, and especially Coach Louis, made Rabbit a better player. His progress was dramatic and his love of the game grew. I have nothing but positive things to say about our time there. If you have a son looking to play travel ball I wholeheartedly endorse calling them to arrange a tryout. So why leave if everything was so great?

Our decision was twofold. First, Rabbit had really grown rapidly as a player and leader, but that was slowing quickly. With the influx of new talent, and the natural process of bringing those players up to speed, he had plateaued. There is always something to learn and many ways to improve. But there was a sense that we were relearning the same lessons. And occasionally that repetition became frustration. To be sure, it was more on my part than Rabbit's, but it was real. Secondly, Rabbit does his best work with a goal ahead of him. Much like joining a LL Majors team last year. His desire to prove he belonged at the higher level motivated his work, and improvement, and he rapidly improved almost every aspect of his game. His new team is a AAA squad, Blue Wave is a AA squad. Rabbit will fight for at bats, innings of defense, and opportunities to play. We are hoping that this will spur another burst of improvement and love of the game.

So, we have tournaments each of the next 3 weeks with Blue Wave, and then we will be off to Mizuno Elite OC. We can only hope that our experience there will be as beneficial as it was with Blue Wave. However, knowing Rabbit, and the way he handles himself, I think we will do just fine.

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