If there was one thing that stood out from all the other players on the clubs that I studied, it was who was designated the club’s Captain.
Somethings were glaringly apparent about the distinction though. Some captains were in name only – for whatever reason(s), while others were true to the honor, and acted like it.
Rarely did I notice pitchers with this distinction. More often than not, the backstop, shortstop or in rare cases a firstbaseman held this spot.
In all cases, those that truly acted like Captains did so with the following characteristics:
They always were in tune with the head coach and his staff. They seem to anticipate what was expected of their teammates and in particular what was expected of them – either indivually or as a co-captain.
Arrival at the park finds the Captain(s) organizing things with equipment arrangements, warmups sessions (unless otherwise specificied).
During the ground rule’s session, he/they accompany the coaches, he/they formally introduce himeself/themselves.
During the game it’s not unsual to find a Captain holding down the firstbase coach’s spot, sometimes, but rarely the third base coach’s spot. However, the head usually designates a staff coach to these positions.
During the game, a Captain can spot weakness in his club’s defensive postion better than his coaches can. Why? Because a Captain, being a player and socializes off the field with his teammates, usually knows the players on his club much better than the adults. Advising his teamates of corrective action(s) should be a coorperative process with both the adults and himself.
Captains are usually the spark that keeps things going. That motivation that is well timed, never abusive or dictorial. His maturity is one of the many qualities that earned him the honor of the Captain’s role in the first place.
If you’ve been, or are, a Captain on your club – what are some of the things that you bring to position?