2001-08-04 / Letters

Bad Parents, Bad Sports

Bad Parents, Bad Sports

Dear Editor;

I was a coach for little league for 7 years and would like to comment on the parent that stated, "Little did I know I was placing him anywhere meant his being on losing team".

One of the key elements of baseball is teamwork and sportsmanship. Winning or losing is not the key.  If a team loses, does that make it a bad team? Do you think Mike Piazza goes away from a "losing" game saying, "I don't want to play anymore, I stink?" And what does the child's other teammates think when they read this? They start to think that they stink! Do you think a child who doesn't play too well on a "winning" team feels good about himself even though his team wins?"

Every child needs to start somewhere, so when it's said that a large group couldn't play," what does that mean? That they should give up? How does a player get better? I assume by practicing and playing.

When you say 1 was won out of
"sheer luck" what do the other kids on the team think? These are young kids who need to feel like they are a part of a team, to feel good about themselves when they play good, and understand that they can't win all the time and accept that as part of a sport.

When you say "my son’s team
seemed to be comprised of the leftovers", what message are you giving them? If the child played well and was happy, where's the problem??
It seems to me, in trying to get what might be a valid point across, this
woman used winning and losing as the main issue, which shouldn't be.

Every child has a strong point, and as parents we need to reinforce that in them and not say they are leftovers. You need to put the sport back in sportsmanship. Would it be better to put a child on a team, which may be above his level and have him feel bad because everyone is better than him? It's the parent’s responsibility as well as the coaches to teach these things to the kids.


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