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Year 4 Day 58- Play ball

by admin on November 8th, 2006

We won our softball game last night. I didn’t pull a muscle either. I slid into 2nd, and hurt my knee. It’s too early in the season to start sliding. Our team is not too bad. When we have all our players, we’re as tough as any team in the league. You don’t want a bunch of washed up old dudes on your team. We’re way too competitive for our own good. It’s almost comical… I can look at things now and know it’s just crusty slow pitch softball, but when I’m playing, it’s another story.

It was nice to be on a field of any kind though. Given what my personal life is like right now, I’m just happy for any moment of time that doesn’t let me focus on my issues outside of school.

I did fairly well for my first game of the year. Singled, walked, hit into a fielders choice (which would have been an infield hit, had we had someone with any decent speed at 2nd.) I grounded out as well. I made a few nice plays at first, had two balls get by me that were thrown in the dirt… I got 4 out of the turf, but missed those 2. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, if you miss my stretch, it was a BAD throw.

Our team has a few new faces on it, one new teacher, (who is also known by the size of her luggage). She’s not real good at playing. She looked lost at 2nd the one inning she played there. I was very fearful she’d have to make a play on a hard hit ball, and blood would be shed. Thankfully, we escaped that inning without incident. She got a hit too, but isn’t gazelle like on the base paths. Part of playing in this league is taking a good lead after the pitch, so you’re closer to the next base should the ball be hit in the infield. This wasn’t really something she did well (she got thrown out at 3rd).

Our team is solid at almost all positions. Our 3rd basemen played college ball, our SS played college ball, our 2nd basemen played in the Olympics (she’s really good), Our outfielders have played multiple seasons at a time, and are really good. We rotate kids and teachers who aren’t as good between catcher and right field. The right field one burns us about 6-10 times a year. It’s sort of lame to talk about slow pitch softball too seriously, let’s just say some hitters know how to pick their spots and take advantage of’that kid in right field.’ We used to put our old principal out there, and he struggled.

Right field- It’s a harder position to play than most people think. In t-ball or little league you could throw your worst player out there and rest assured that 90% of the time they were going to be able to sit out there and pick flowers, never seeing a ball come there way. The one time a game they did get a ball, comedy ensued, and nothing was really damaged. Unfortunately, that mentality carries through to most every other level. We put kids out in right field who really have no clue what they’re doing. They sit out there, and for about 70% of the game, they don’t get anything hit to them… then come the lefties, and the guys who can pick their spots. They ALWAYS go after the poor guy in right. I watch the ball sail over my head at first, and then watch the panic follow. The kids always freeze right off the bat, with that’oh no… here it comes’ look on their face. Then you can watch as their brains calculate if they need to run up or back on the ball. They always run two steps in the wrong direction. Panic again, and watch the ball go by them, or drop 20 feet in front of them. There’s a lot of pressure to catch a ball.

One of my friends was on the opposing team. I like the guy… but a softball player he is not. I played a game with him once, and he nearly killed me running from behind the plate to catch a pop-up at first. Saying he over reacts to balls, is being gentle. Like I said, I like the guy… and if it were hockey we were playing, he’d destroy most people. He’s an athletic dude, and his team thought he was a player. They put him at shortstop.
We all know that Shortstop is a position that receives more than its fair share of hard hit balls. He missed most things hit his way, threw it away, kicked it, or just froze. I felt bad for him. It seemed the more he botched a play, the more balls that were hit at him. Eventually, his team put him at LF. (Right field was handled properly by a kid who may never have seen a bat and ball before) The leftfield adventure wasn’t much better. I saw a ball get kicked, thrown backwards, and just glove thrown at short. To make matters worse. I was trying to hit at him. I knew if I could poke one over his head it was a home run for sure. Poor guy.

Today is class scheduling for next session. I do not like this day. They give us 1 hour for the kids to pick their schedules for next session. It takes them 15 minutes at most… so we have a 45 minute down time. I have kids who need class time to finish assignments for this week. We have a test tomorrow. That class needs to study… and finish work. It messes everything up. They should shorten all the classes, and make scheduling a 20 minute block right before lunch.

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