Was I Right In Doing This?

Okay, so I’ve been appointed team captain by our new coach. One of my close friends who is also the nephew of our late coach was exciting about learning a knucklecurve from his cousin and posted something about it on facebook.

One of our teammates, the shortstop made fun of him saying “haha, I bet it doesn’t even do anything.” this particular player has a tendency for being arrogant and cocky, says a lot of negative teams to his own teammates. I snapped at him, told him off and basically told him that he needs to knock it off.

We got into a long battle of words, him using a lot of profanity and insults while I remained even keeled and didn’t once use a profound word. He said he was just messing around but I know from the mouths of other teammates that it’s not always perceived that way. My guess is he really was just kidding.

I tried to explain to him the concept of perception and that it doesn’t matter what you mean it matters how other people take it. He flipped out and called me a few choice words. I kind of felt bad because I lacked mindfulness of his perspective while trying to teach him perception.

I’m just wondering, do you think I was right in getting after him or was my reaction unneccessary?

EDIT: I was just talking to my friend, he said he really does take it personally, because shortstop acts like that to him all the time. And shortstop did apologize to him. Thought I’d share that.

If I had a nickel every time someone joked about another persons new pitch. “I bet your curve is like a slowed down fastball” etc etc. Should have just let it go.

Maybe so, the reason I got after him though is that he constantly does stuff like this and some of our teammates take it pretty harsh, like I said the kid he was talking to is a close friend of mine and I know him well enough to know he is very very sensitive.

The shortstop that acts like this constantly acts like he’s better than anyone, and talks about himself that way. There’s a difference between being confident and joking around and being flat out cocky.

It’s unfortunate that the responsibility, and job, of a team captain wasn’t explained to you - in full.

What you took upon yourself was a lot more than what you should - but to your credit, you were trying to do the right thing.

However (here it comes), you put yourself into a role that you don’t belong.

The overall agenda(s) of a team’s management belongs with the head coach, your Skipper. It does not belong to you - nor should you assume, or have that management role placed in your lap. You have neither the experience, nor do you have the leadership role to set the tempo and conduct of players.

In the coaching ranks there are those that understand a lot more about human interaction and influencing conduct. Therefore, what’s expected of all, and the personality to enforce said expectations - is something that coaches bring with them as a matter of who and what they are as people. Coaches have the dynamics, in the way they conduct themselves, to motivate people in positive ways - both on and off the field. It’s one of the reasons why coaches are in the coaching business. In this regard, you and youngsters like you, come up really short - but that’s not a bad thing. It’s just the way things are. Your young and without the dynamics that adults have.

The tendency that a lot of team captains have is to take on the “enforcer’s” role. They try to motivate and lead by either being in a “click”, or, they’re Mr popularity. Sometimes, these team captains actually can perform on the field - thus they become an example to the rest … which by the way is one of the reasons why coaches pick these people to be captain(s).

In any event, to address your situation more directly.

  • Don’t take on any more of a role then team sprit on the field.
  • Don’t try and re-make someone into something they’re not. There could be issues for this person(s),outside of your realm, that only complicates things. Things that you are not qualified to deal with.
  • A team is a reflection of the coach or coaches that manage it. They are suppose to set an example by which you and others can follow. If they are not doing that job, that’s their problem, not yours.
  • You have enough on your plate with just growing up and addressing your own issues. Taking on the job of “making the world right” is a big bite. You can address someone’s cruel remark, but just remember to say your piece, then let it go. Starting a debate - all by yourself, will get you no where. So, don’t go looking for a reason to beat yourself up. Pick your battles more carefully.

I’ve read your posts in the past, and along with this last one, I’d like to make some observations about you.

You show a sensitivity for what’s reasonable and what’s right, more so than many of your generation. This will serve you very well as you get older, hold a job, start a family, and making decisions in the voting booth.
Your the kind of person that makes a town, a community, a school district, a good neighbor. A person that others depend on.
You’ll learn quickly as you grow older and you’ll put a lot of things right - but, you’ll have experience behind you to manage your actions, and you’ll get results.
It’s people like yourself that others will depend on when the tough stuff needs doing. Things that require courage, dedication, honesty, worth.
It’s people like you who lead by example - but, in ways that suit your age and experience. You’re a quick learner, and you will be admired for that.

So, take a step back from this situation that your in, take stock of what I suggested, and let your coach deal with the negatives that slam his stewardship - that’s his job, not yours.

Coach B.

Thank you Coach Baker. I appreciate the time you put into that post.

At the time I felt like it was the right thing but you’re right I probably should have let it go. After I made my remark is when his name calling started, instead of arguing I should have just let him have his word.

Most the time I would have let this go, I knew how much this knuckle curve thing meant to him because it’s sort of like a family pitch and he finally learned how to do it.

Next time, I’ll just forget about it and if I have any concerns I will bring it up with a coach.

There you go! See what I said about being a quick learner and picking your battles. You’ll find that you’ll be more at peace with yourself, and at the same time, learn from what your coach does, or doesn’t do.

If he addresses the issue(s) and resolves them - how and what approach did he use. What words did he collect, and when, and how. Did he pick his opportunity - at the right time and place?

Wait, watch, observe, learn. Take stock of how leaders lead. Observe how a professional, is professional. That’s what this man is there for.

On the other hand, if it’s a no win situation, learn from it and project what other situations might mirror this as you get older and enter the work place, church organizations, politics, dealing with authority, and so on.
Expecting the unexpected, learning from the past - of what works and what won’t, is the foundation of a winner. No sense in re-inventing the wheel. Take stock of those that have done that for you.

Coach B.

I think it’s unfair to call all instructors “Coaches”. The title of Coach should be earned. A Coach is an expert in the game, has no personal agenda, is a leader, is sometimes a friend, handles the game officials, the players, the league, the fans, and the parents with class.

Great post, COACH Baker.


Junior Instructor Gettingthere.

like what canadian said. its so true. i throw a knuckle curve by the way and my friend said the same thing. also he said my palmball was 5 mph faster than my fastbal. but thats different. if the shortstop did that all the time than you do need to tell him that should be knocking it off.

coach baker posted one heck of a post