Daddy Coaches

I’ve seen the phrase “daddy coach” bandied about on this site - with extreme derision. What are “daddy coaches”? As a Dad and a coach, I am curious.

We aren’t near as bad as other sites on the issue, but loosely, a “daddy coach” is a guy who sets up a team for the aggrandizement of his kid…to the exclusion of other talent. We here mostly focus on player/pitcher development but occasionally we’ll get someone frustrated by this and it will spur discussion.
I was a dad and a coach but I was, as a rule, tougher on my kids than the other guys I let them reach whatever level they wanted and worked very actively to develop all of the players on the squad. Daddy coaches" are generally all about the glory and living vicariously through Jr.

A “daddy coach” is a guy who coaches to assure his son plays a position he has no business playing. The brand of ball they play is “daddy ball”. Not all fathers that coach are “daddy coaches”. Some are very good.

perfect definition, Mike.

Can a coach be a good coach and still play his son in positions several other team members can play equally well or better? Would this be a “Daddy coach”?

“buddy ball” is where someone previously managing in “daddy ball” decides to form a team around his son comprised of all his buddies’ sons to circumvent the town league’s pesky draft process. Usually forming an AAU team or something similar.

:smiley:

“panic ball” is when that kid gets to be HS age and the “daddy” comes to the realization that he can no longer be his son’s head coach, buys the HS a new pitching machine days before the “tryout” to ensure a spot for his presumptive future major college and MLB-bound son.

:roll:

If there are better players at a certain position, then why would the coach play his son there. He can still be a good coach and make selfish decisions.

If that coach, good or bad, is playing his son at a position over a more talented kid who is better suited for that position, then Yep, Daddy Coach.

Is Daddy coaching the most pernicious event for the parents in the stands or is there something worse?

Don’t know if it’s so much pernicious for parents as it is for the kids themselves.

Think about it: What if a coach insists on regularly starting their son or daughter at a position where there is clearly a better player, and the team is weaker because of it? And what if this is a cause of said team losing games? Such things are difficult to describe for parents watching from the stands, as they don’t get to see what goes on in practice on a daily basis. But the other kids aren’t stupid, and they’ll see it for what it is: Sacrificing a team’s pride (and record) for the sake of inflating the ego of both kid and his daddy coach.

Can a coach be a good coach and still play his son in positions several other team members can play equally well or better? Would this be a “Daddy coach”?[/quote]

IMO no; the key word is better. If another kid is better at a position what are you teaching your son if you play him in front of the kid who is better and what is your motovation for coaching? Sons travel coach we’ve been with for a while is excellent & has son on team. Son has lowest BA on team therefore gets fewest AB’s. kid who plays same position is better therefore plays in front of him. Kid is a good pitcher & gets us some quality inningsq in pool play. Not “lights out” so he doesn’t pitch in bracket. AC’s son is a heck of a player and his AB’s & position play reflect such. These guys do an excellent job objectively looking at each kids abilities & efforts. They do a great job of getting the kids in the right positions & appropriate amount of playing time; based on ability & effort rather than blood or buddies. I made a decision when mine started playing to stay out of coaching. Initially because I knew very little about baseball and as time went on chose to stay out because honestly I don’t think I could be objective when it came to my own son. My decision has served him well as he’s had to earn what he got. There are more than not “daddy coaches” out there but by the same token we’ve had the pleasure of playing for some really good coaches who are also fathers and sons play on the team. My hats off to these guys.

Daddy Coaches tend to keep better players in right field and batting in the bottom of the line-up so they don’t develop and become better then the coaches (or insider’s) kid.

The objective is too assure your (the coaches) sons are the best, and that may mean keeping other kids from getting oppurtunites and shining.

Our first scrimmage game is this weekend, and next weekend we play in a tournament. My son, after being awed by the high school coaching staff last week, sat in right field during practice all week and threw no pitches. Meanwhile, the coaches sons pitched all of the inter-squad innings in preperation for this weekend. Hey, the catcher was tired chasing all of the bad pitches, and the team grew irked hearing “Ball 4” over and over again.

But, until the games start, I am giving the coaches the benefit of the doubt. Most likely, they wanted to get the hitter confidence a boost, and my son still loves Ks even in practice games. So, to let the kids hit, the coaches pitched their sons. :slight_smile: Or, the coaches see him as wild and didn’t want anyone to get hurt. He hit two runners the previous week on pick-off attempts. Both instances, the ball and runner got to the bag at the same moment, but the fielder either waved at the ball or pulled his glove away from the ball so as not to get hit. In each case, the runner got hit on or near the face sliding head first back into the base. The manager’s son was one of the runners. My son hasn’t seen the mound since that throw.

Some background info from last year, the local Little League wanted to ban him last year because he threw too hard. Now, on a competitve team, I’m seeing the kids pull their gloves back instead of catching his throws. My son is scared of the reputation he’s getting. He wants to sit on the bench by himself, and when he does play, he wants to sit out in RF and gun anyone out going from 1st to 3rd on a single, which he’s already done multiple times this spring.

{in my best Ted Knight voice…}
Well, the world needs right fielders too. :lol:

[quote=“West2East”]
Some background info from last year, the local Little League wanted to ban him last year because he threw too hard. Now, on a competitve team, I’m seeing the kids pull their gloves back instead of catching his throws…[/quote]

What type of competitive league is your son playing now (travel or another league)?

{in my best Ted Knight voice…}

haha, I forgot about Ted Knight…

My son played on two teams when he was younger who had coaches who had kids on the team. One guy was just silly about it. He had Jr. playing SS even though he was afraid of the ball…he was 10 playing with 12 year olds and really had no business being there. He would sidestep balls wouldnt get down on grounders…the most errors I counted him making in one inning was 6. He averaged about 7 per game…worst of all when he made an error he would get angry and throw his glove down or pout. The worst part was watching him walk in and sit by himself on the bench…rejected by the other older players…thanks dad.

The other dad coach was very good. He had all the players on a rotating cycle, his son got no special treatment. The next year when they moved into Babe Ruth age his kid mouthed off one too many times and he kicked him off the team (the kid deserved it).

So, it is hit and miss, but, for themost part I think there are more bad daddy coahces than good ones.

[quote=“Mike4”][quote=“West2East”]
Some background info from last year, the local Little League wanted to ban him last year because he threw too hard. Now, on a competitve team, I’m seeing the kids pull their gloves back instead of catching his throws…[/quote]

What type of competitive league is your son playing now (travel or another league)?[/quote]

County 14U League is set up in three section. 1 is competitive and is the path for HS players. 3 is rec. Section 1 teams also play local to regional tournaments. His team also plays two tournaments each month during the spring.

He was the 2nd pitcher used yesterday, thereby we can put him #2 on the staff. The #1 pitcher had an easy 1-2-3 seven pitch inning, resting on some nice outfield defense to catch up with the deep flies for outs. My son pitched the 2nd inning and went through the heart on the lineup. Struck out 2, gave up a two-strike opposite field blooping single to their big guy (who also homered and doubled in the game), and a couple easy grounders to short (one an error). Overall, he looked good for a 1st game. Wasn’t throwing hard, but the slider was beautiful for a 1st game.

[quote=“West2East”][quote=“Mike4”][quote=“West2East”]
Some background info from last year, the local Little League wanted to ban him last year because he threw too hard. Now, on a competitve team, I’m seeing the kids pull their gloves back instead of catching his throws…[/quote]

What type of competitive league is your son playing now (travel or another league)?[/quote]

County 14U League is set up in three section. 1 is competitive and is the path for HS players. 3 is rec. Section 1 teams also play local to regional tournaments. His team also plays two tournaments each month during the spring.

He was the 2nd pitcher used yesterday, thereby we can put him #2 on the staff. The #1 pitcher had an easy 1-2-3 seven pitch inning, resting on some nice outfield defense to catch up with the deep flies for outs. My son pitched the 2nd inning and went through the heart on the lineup. Struck out 2, gave up a two-strike opposite field blooping single to their big guy (who also homered and doubled in the game), and a couple easy grounders to short (one an error). Overall, he looked good for a 1st game. Wasn’t throwing hard, but the slider was beautiful for a 1st game.[/quote]

Sounds like a much larger (& better) league structure than we have around here. Sounds like your sons doing very well. Sometimes easy to misread moves made in practice. Wouldn’t worry about it though; the cream always rises to the top.

[quote=“Mike4”]
Sounds like a much larger (& better) league structure than we have around here. Sounds like your sons doing very well. Sometimes easy to misread moves made in practice. Wouldn’t worry about it though; the cream always rises to the top.[/quote]

It’s a fairly good structure for the kids between LL and HS. It gives an oppurtunity for kids to continue to play at all levels. Thanks for the encouragement.

My son had good comments after the game. 1) I can this pitching. Should’ve whalloped a few of them, but timing is not yet there. 2) I think I can throw a strike any time with any pitch. 14 of the 20 pitches were strikes on Day 1; Balls were just missing and he got a few freebies from kids swinging at sliders outside the zone. Opposing batters swinging at a bad pitch is different for him. :slight_smile: