Friday, May 30, 2008


Webster's Dictionary defines maximize as making the most of an opportunity or situation.

After a lackluster performance a couple of nights ago, we had our doubts about our chances against last night's impressive opponent - kind of a David against Goliath scene - even on our home field.

But our pitching and hitting especially shined and met the challenge, and we managed to turn a tie game in the bottom of the last inning with two on and two out into a great victory - definitely one for the memory books!

Focus and confidence highlight ability and performance on any given game!

Thanks to the team!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Food for Thought

Family files lawsuit in metal bat injury case

The family of a boy who suffered brain damage after he was struck by a line drive off an aluminum baseball bat sued the bat's maker and others on Monday, saying they should have known it was dangerous.

The family of Steven Domalewski, who was 12 when he was struck by the ball in 2006, filed the lawsuit in state Superior Court. It names Hillerich & Bradsby Co., maker of the 31-inch, 19-ounce Louisville Slugger TPX Platinum bat used when Steven was hit.

The lawsuit also names Little League Baseball and Sports Authority, which sold the bat. It claims the defendants knew, or should have known, that the bat was dangerous for children to use, according to the family's attorney, Ernest Fronzuto.

"People who have children in youth sports are excited about the lawsuit from a public policy standpoint because they hope it can make the sport safer," Fronzuto said after filing the suit Monday morning. "There are also those who are skeptical of the lawsuit and don't see the connection between Steven's injury and the aluminum bat."

Little League denies any wrongdoing, as does the bat manufacturer. Sports Authority has not responded to several telephone messages seeking comment.

Steven was pitching in a Police Athletic League game when he was hit just above the heart by a line drive. His heart stopped beating and his brain was deprived of oxygen for 15 to 20 minutes, according to his doctors.

Although he was not playing in a Little League game, the organization is being sued because it gave its seal of approval to the bat, certifying it as safe for use by children, Fronzuto said.

Friday, May 16, 2008


We had a great practice this week, and we needed it (contrary to what some of the players think, we can’t get better by just playing games). We worked on some simple things (see your copy of Chapter 9 of Joe’s Baseball Playbook) and the players seemed to “get it.”

But why?

I’d say that practice allows us to focus. And here’s my random thoughts:

Focus defined - directed attention, a point of concentration, or a center of activity. In other words, it’s the focal point - the task, person, or event you place above all others for a specific time. For instance, being focused means looking past minor distractions so that you can see clearly the major issues at hand. It means putting on hold the little problems that come up in order to concentrate on solving bigger problems.

For players, the following equation is a simple way to think of focus:

Concentration + Intensity = Focus

We can focus on talking about the good accomplishments that we’re attaining (and we are), but it sure helps to have unexpected opportunities to apply them in a practice setting. There they can choose to either work at improving and get better, or they’ll slip back and get worse.

We want the players to focus on our two goals: first, "Play a little bit better every game (PLAY HARD)," and second, "Baseball will be fun for us (HAVE FUN)."

We have brief team meetings before or after each practice to recap what we want to accomplish. This week we asked the players to spend the ride home from practice thinking about what we worked on, in an attempt to make it happen more instinctively in game situations. That helps them to be as prepared as possible so that they can perform as well as possible.

If everyone understands (the individual’s role in) the team’s mission, goals, and expectations, then everyone can look in the same direction and see the same big picture. They must see it not only on paper but also in their minds so that they understand it. Ideally, it is also in their hearts!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Travelled far for good reasons

Hey baseball fans - how about those Indiana Bandit teams that travelled all the way to Columbia, Missouri this past weekend and the results were fantastic!

The 14U team won the Consolation bracket, the 12U team barely lost in their Championship game, and the 11U team made their presence known, too! All in all, it was well worth the bling! Great job Bandits!

A special thanks has to be mentioned to the Gibson family - Kyle, Sharon, and Harold - for allowing us to see Kyle pitch his Missouri Tigers to a win on Saturday, show us the Missouri sports complexes, and visit with them and talk about college baseball and life at the next level.

Keep up the hard work, everybody, and we'll see you at the next "Play Ball!"