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Thursday, July 24, 2014

What a bunch of wimps

Posted Friday, August 29, 2008, at 12:47 AM

(Photo)
They've been pouring this on pretty thick in New Haven.
My Olympic hangover has ended, so I will end my hiatus now.

I'm sure many of you have heard about this, but it's worth telling again. Apparently there is a hard-throwing nine-year-old who formerly played in the Youth Baseball League of New Haven (Conn.) named Jericho Scott.

However, young Mr. Scott is apparently so good and throws so fast that he has been told by the league that he can't pitch any more. According to an AP report, the league's attorney said that facing a pitcher who can throw as fast as young Jericho is frightening to beginning players.

You know what? I was a beginning baseball player once, and I was extremely frightened of the ball. But you know something else? I got over it.

It's not like this kid is some 16-year-old who is out there throwing at and beaning seven-year-olds. The kid is one of their own peers.

This isn't a Danny Almonte situation we're talking about.

Furthremore, the kid's never even hit anybody! Not only does he have impressive speed, but also excellent control.

What kind of world are we living in when we punish a kid for excelling? The saddest part of this all is the kid thinks it's his fault. In the wire story I read, he said, "I feel sad. I feel like it's my fault nobody could play."

NOW THAT MAKES ME SAD. This poor kid just wants to play baseball, and when his coach puts him on the mound, the other team refuses to take the field. That's not his fault, and for him to think so because of a bunch of adults is truly reprehensible.

There's a term my friends and I like to use for this kind of behavior: Weak Sauce!

There's another term that I'd like to use for these league officials and what they're turning these kids into, but it wouldn't be PC for me to use it in this forum.

But here's the bottom line for me. We Americans wonder why it is that we can't win when we play baseball in the Olympics or the World Baseball Classic. It's our national pastime isn't it? We invented the game, right? What gives?

I'll tell you what gives. We've anesthetized the sport to the point that we can't compete with the countries that actually make it a competition. I agree that every kid should have the right to play the game and enjoy it. But those kids also have to understand that winning and losing are parts of sports, just like they're parts of life. That's the way it is.

As long as we go on teaching them that life or any part of it is fair, we're doing them a disservice.

The truth is that some of us have the talent to go a long way on the diamond, and some of us can't hack it.

I learned that the hard way early on, and I still love the sport.


Comments
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I MANAGE A LITTLE LEAGUE BASEBALL TEAM AND COACHED THE 9 & 10 YR OLD ALLSTAR TEAM. THERE ARE 3 KIDS ON THAT TEAM THAT CAN THROW 40 PLUS 1 THAT CAN THROW 45 AND 1 THAT CAN THROW OVER 50 AND HE IS NINE. THERE ARE SOME EXCEPTIONAL YOUNG ATHLETES OUT THERE. LET THEM EXCELL IN WHAT THEY DO AND MAYBE THIS COUNTRY WILL GET A LITTLE STRONGER. IN OUR LEAGUE 9 YR. OLDS PLAY WITH 12 YR. OLDS THAT ARE THROWING 60MPH. WE TELL OUR KIDS "GRAB A BAT AND SEE IF YOU CAN HIT THIS KID.

-- Posted by djdave on Thu, Sep 11, 2008, at 2:01 AM

What's really sad is that its the "adults" that have made the world this way. Long ago we go our feelings hurt over something that happened and instead of getting over it and moving on, some held on to it and promised that they would never let their child be "hurt". And so it came to pass, they had children and instead of being the "adult" they stuck with their childish feelings and not only ruined things for other kids, but for theirs also.

As adults we need to let go of the "petty" things in the past and protect our kids from the real issues and allow them to make mistakes, take their lumps and grow into healthy adults themselves. This can't happen if we "protect them" from everything.

If this young man is this good, allow him to go ahead and play ball with his peers. It may motivate some other young person to learn how to hit these type/speed of pitches and become better in their own right. And if they strike out, oh well life goes on and if they hit a homer, life goes on for the pitcher also.

Life isn't always fair and there are winners and losers, ask anyone who has had a job downsized or fallen on tough times or faced their own Jericho. But we keep moving on, toughen up and learn to swing at the pitches thrown at us. And with a little luck, we even get a hit once in a while.

-- Posted by hoosierpete on Wed, Sep 3, 2008, at 2:54 PM

Does the kid own a hat as nice as yours, Jared?

-- Posted by GRNT on Wed, Sep 3, 2008, at 12:18 PM

Ever so slowly I can feel my freedoms being sucked away as if a giant vacuum called "society" was working itself across the country.

-- Posted by Macgyver on Tue, Sep 2, 2008, at 2:28 PM

what's next, tiger can't golf next year......

-- Posted by gottokno on Sun, Aug 31, 2008, at 10:52 AM

I guarantee there were kids in Western Indiana when I was growing up that threw at least 40 when we were that age. This league is a joke and the commissioner of that league is no man, taking out his frustrations on a 9 year old kid is ridiculous.

-- Posted by jaredscousin on Sat, Aug 30, 2008, at 10:28 PM

I used a pitching machine for my boy's at that age at 50 mph. I don't see the problem and it's not fair for the child. Lets move him to Putnam County where he can have a fair chance. Does anyone know if there is anything in writing that would prohibit him from pitching in his current league in New York sounds like a law suit waiting to happen.

-- Posted by Reader2 on Fri, Aug 29, 2008, at 5:41 PM

That kid can throw over 40mph...i'm pretty sure that's faster than I can throw :(

-- Posted by kevincrafton on Fri, Aug 29, 2008, at 10:39 AM

It's amazing how people are these days. I learned how to play softball from my father who took no mercy on me just because I was a girl and those hits were a lot faster than 40 mph and hurt when they hit me but I am not afraid of the ball. It's unfortunate that adults can't just let kids be kids and have fun. Talk about killing the American Dream where it was once that he would have been praised for being so good. Now being good is a sin...what's next?

-- Posted by sutus08 on Fri, Aug 29, 2008, at 10:02 AM

Imagine what this does to other hopeful kids.Imagine this Jericho out in the back yard,day after day throwing a ball through a tire hangin in his tree. "Son,nice job of working hard to improve,thats what hard work,effort and dedication is all about,I'm proud of you,keep up the hard work" Then it turns out crazy like this and most kids w/in earshot says,"why work hard,be dedicated ecct...Political correctness runs amok again....

-- Posted by honestyisbestpolicy on Fri, Aug 29, 2008, at 8:43 AM


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Jared Jernagan
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Jared Jernagan is a 2003 graduate of Wabash College and has been in journalism since 2005. He sometimes has trouble posting blogs.
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