Email to 14u Gamers regarding 14u as a transition year in youth baseball.
14u Parents — please make sure that your son reads this email.
As I am transitioning away from the 14u team to the 15u team over the next week, I wanted to provide my perspective on the team and where we are going.
First, the difference between this team now versus January 1st is night and day. This is true both as individuals and as a team. I am proud of you. You are ahead of pace, though there is still a lot to work on. We are a very, very good 14u team. And, we are slowly transitioning from kids “who play baseball” to “baseball players”. We have a great schedule of baseball ahead of us. Coach Wheeler, Coach Rosen and Coach Mazzio will help you finish this work.
Given the direction, I am confident that we will be one the the top 14u teams in the region by late summer and will compete with the top teams in the country at East Cobb.
I think that 14u is the most important transition year in youth baseball. The field gets bigger, the game gets harder and, from this point forward, the expectations go up.
It is also an important transition year for young men. Moving from middle school to high school is a big transition in life, academically, socially and athletically. Most of you will have driving permits in 6-8 months! That is a whole different level of execution and focus, with real consequences.
Baseball is a great platform to help in this transition. As players struggle through success/failure, learning to play the game “right”, and deal with high expectations, they are learning important lessons that directly relate to their academic and social lives in the transition to high school.
It is not OK to make mistakes due to lack of effort or lack of focus. As you get older, you are going to be held accountable for these mistakes. It is a big part of growing up. Once you start holding yourself accountable for performing at your best (in sports, school, whatever…), you will end up in a great spot 4 years from now. That is an important inflection point for young men.
I once worked for a successful CEO whose most famous quote was “The long term is just a serious of short terms”. Success is built on execution, doing the little things right, and engaging with effort and passion, every day That is why I care so much about small things. I am sure that at times it seems nuts in the stands and in the dugout. But, small things matter and young men need to learn to care about them. That is how baseball players are molded, and it is a great foundation for success.
Coaches Rosen, Wheeler and Mazzio will continue to emphasize these points. I will help run practices and will be at as many games as possible when we are in the same city.