My son Blake started high school last month. Until recently, size and power have not been such a big deal because he was typically always one of the most athletic guys on the team.
However, this is his 4th year competing on a 90 foot diamond. He was one of the lucky ones because he happen to make the 6th grade middle school team @ Boys Latin when he was only eleven (Class of 2025 DOB 12/20/2006).
Meanwhile, he has been encouraged by many baseball coaches and especially me to work on becoming “bigger, stronger & faster”. He started playing on a travel team in addition to the traditional REC team in the area since he was only 6. In fact, he routinely played 1-2 age groups higher to level the playing field because he was so talented.
Then the trophies started filling up his room. He earned championship prizes for winning the league, tournaments and even one MVP medal awarded by opposing coach @ HCYP during 8U event. This includes Baltimore County, Harford County, Essex Father’s Day and others.
One of the proudest moments of my life was watching him compete in the Cooperstown “Dream Park” 12U tournament in New York. Not only did he get a chance to play on the Roland Park Rangers travel team twice in 2018 & 2019 but he also was invited to play on LTRC @ All Star Village (Thanks Coach Szymanski).
So, this year is critical for Blake to really start working out hard and improving his power and speed. This includes strength hitting extra bases (slugging %) as well as endurance. When he was very young we learned that it is BEST to limit lifting only his own body weight (i.e. Push-ups, Pull-ups & Sit-ups).
As he got older I started taking him into the gym and working out on Nautilus equipment. The main goal was “high repetitions” with light weight.
In addition, the best exercise of all is running, biking and swimming. He’s been a very active kid and I particularly focussed on “CROSS TRAINING”. I was warned not to burn him out in baseball ONLY. Instead, sign him up for soccer, basketball, etc.
Former Collegiate Running Back At Bowie State University. PJ is from Baltimore MD attending Calvert hall for 3 years and then graduating from Dunbar High School in Baltimore. PJ has been training for 5 years now and has developed many athletes in Baltimore area from middle school to the pros. PJ has traveled for his knowledge and training methods, working with many NFL athletes in different States outside of Baltimore. working Coach PJ has developed a comprehensive system which has essential components to becoming an elite athlete. Key principles include stability, body control, motor skill development, speed, power, and agility.
Every year thousands of players participate in the great game under the Babe Ruth League banner. Many of them dream about someday becoming professional athletes.
It used to be that only young male athletes could dream of reaching such lofty heights through athletic participation. But now because of women’s professional basketball, softball and soccer leagues, young female athletes have been able to share those dreams.
While it’s great to dream and strive for success in all of your endeavors, the reality is that a very, very small percentage of athletes ever get the opportunity to play a sport professionally. In fact, only a handful of the athletes who participate in youth baseball or softball will play at the collegiate level. More, but probably not the majority, will play in high school.
At some point all of us – even the most successful professional athletes – have to venture out into the business world or what some people like to call the “real world.” While it is our primary goal to help the young baseball and softball players improve in those sports, we are very aware that there is more to life than athletics. There are many valuable life lessons that can be communicated through sports participation, and it is our hope that the young athletes will take away something that will help them later on in life. One of those key lessons that we hope to impart is the value of sportsmanship. Read more
Every game we handed out a trophy for the Most Valuable Player. This idea came to me from watching my son’s Head Baseball Coach, Doug Bassett (Facebook). My son left RPBL in 2014 and he and I got involved with the WM Warriors. I was the Assistant Coach on the 8U-B travel team. In 2015, Blake had the most success season to-date winning the MVP in the “35th Annual HCYP Invitational Baseball Tournament in Ellicott City, MD”. This medal was awarded by the opposing Manager. His 8U-A team also went undefeated in the 2015 Essex Express Baseball Father’s Day Summer Classic
August, 2001 my girlfriend Rene and I drove to the Eastern shore with our first born child AKA dog Brendan. The breeder named him Snow because he was so white. So, when we set out to train him and enrolled him in multiple obedience classes. This is where I learned one of the most valuable lessons in life. She said,
“Have you ever wondered how trainers are able to get dolphins to jump out of the water on command and do a flip at SeaWorld? It’s through “positive reinforcement” using fish.”
So, instead of fish we used Cheese Balls and it was AMAZINGLY effective. I managed to train Brendan to Sit, Stay and Come on command beautifully. He was literally like a son to us. We loved him so much he became our “ring bearer” at our wedding @ the Inn at Perry Cabin.
This style of teaching proved to be very important in my teaching career, as well as coaching. I began awarding a Most Valuable Player (MVP) trophy at every game. There is NO “I” in TEAM. For example, Kansas City Royals’ Salvador Perez was named 2015 World Series MVP. Read more He wears jersey #13. Guess who else wears that unlucky number on the Orioles? Gold Glove 3rd baseman – Manny Machado
At Closing Ceremonies this year, we will be presenting the first ever RPBL Coaches Award to one player on each National League Team (9-10 age group) who best represents the values of RPBL. These values include:
The winner on the Blaze goes to Henry Fischel. He always had a smile on his face, hustled, followed direction well, cheered for his teammates and most of all was a great asset to the overall success of our team this year. In fact, he managed to have some key offensive hits when we needed it most and his defensive pitching performance was outstanding.
However, it was not a land slide. We had many players who were very easy to teach and seemed to be enjoying the game. But there were two special players who deserve to be recognized. Amelia Overton & Wyatt Winstead – Honorable Mentions. I believe their best example of “Sportsmanship” was shown when they consistently went out of their way to acknowledge me not only after every game, but after every practice as well. “Thank you Coach” are the 3 magic words any Skipper loves to hear!
One last player who made remarkable improvement was Sawyer Ross. He wins the “Most Improved” award. Here’s a guy who had never played baseball before. Yet, I knew he was a great athlete because he played soccer with my son. He became my “pet project”. I worked with him and tried to teach him how to bat. Sure enough, when the game was on the line, he came through. Read Victory & Defeat
Don’t be a Sore Loser
Sportsmanship is an aspiration or ethos that a sport or activity will be enjoyed for its own sake, with proper consideration for fairness, ethics, respect, and a sense of fellowship with one’s competitors. A “sore loser” refers to one who does not take defeat well, whereas a “good sport” means being a “good winner” as well as being a “good loser”. (Someone who shows courtesy towards another in a sports game).
RPBL requires that we play every player in the outfield. So, we will continue to make adjustments this season experimenting with players at pitcher, 1B and SS. I will continue to keep the batting lineup in descending order alphabetically. This gives everyone equal plate appearances.
In general, sportsmanship refers to virtues such as fairness, self-control, courage, and persistence, and has been associated with interpersonal concepts of treating others and being treated fairly, maintaining self-control if dealing with others, and respect for both authority and opponents. The four elements of sportsmanship are often shown being good form, the will to win, equity and fairness.
The important thing to remember is that we win and lose as a TEAM. “The way a team plays as a whole determines its success. You may have the greatest bunch of individual stars in the world, but if they don’t play together, the club won’t be worth a dime.” –Babe Ruth
Since every sport is rule driven, the most common offence of bad sportsmanship is the act of cheating or breaking the rules to gain an unfair advantage. A competitor who exhibits poor sportsmanship after losing a game or contest is often called a “sore loser” (those who show poor sportsmanship after winning are typically called “bad champs”). Sore loser behavior includes blaming others for the loss, not accepting responsibility for personal actions that contributed to the defeat, reacting to the loss in an immature or improper fashion, making excuses for the defeat, and citing unfavorable conditions or other petty issues as reasons for the defeat. A bad winner acts in a shallow fashion after his or her victory, such as by gloating about his or her win, rubbing the win in the face(s) of the opponent(s), and lowering the opponent(s)’s self-esteem by constantly reminding the opponent(s) of “poor” performance in comparison (even if the opponent(s) competed well). Read more
Cal Ripken plays in his 2,131st consecutive game, breaking Lou Gehrig’s record; truly one of baseball’s magical, once-in-a-lifetime moments.
Perfect PRACTICE Makes Perfect
Practice does not make perfect. How is that possible? Because bad habits may be practiced, and practicing a flawed technique will get a player nowhere. The only way to do something is to do it right. Practicing good habits is what makes a better player. Habits are formed in practice and then become automatic in the game. You play like you practice; If you practice correctly, you will play correctly.
TEACHING Baseball… Printable Lessons as well as Video Lessons (click hyperlinks below) on the Basic Fundamentals of Hitting, Infield & Outfield Play, Pitching and even a Glossary. Instructors include Cal Ripken Jr., Billy Ripken, John Habyan and Joe Orsulak.
Hitting is probably the most difficult part of the game. However, it is also the most enjoyable and satisfying part, as we all love to hit a baseball. It’s difficult because the pitcher has the ability to throw the ball hard, or not so hard, or to make it curve or sink. As the hitter, we not only have to determine what pitch has been thrown, but also whether it is a strike or a ball. If it is a strike, we have to attempt to hit it. All of this must be done in a fraction of a second. Like all parts of the game there are basic fundamentals that can help make us become better hitters. Click on Hitting Lessons with Cal: Fundamentals, Choose Right Bat, Right Grip, Stance, Weight Shift, Release Point, Stride, Swing, Tee Drill, Soft Toss Drill, One Hand Drill, Make It Fun
Outfield play, especially at the youth levels, often gets overlooked. Even though the outfielder is not directly involved in the majority of plays, coaches need to stress the importance of the position. An outfielder has to be able to maintain concentration throughout the game, because there may only be one or two hit balls that come directly to that player during the course of the contest. Those plays could be the most important ones. There also are many little things an outfielder can do — backing up throws and other outfielders, cutting off balls and keeping runners from taking extra bases, and throwing to the proper cutoffs and bases – that don’t show up in a scorebook, but can really help a team play at a high level. Click on Outfield Lessons with Joe Orsulak: Straight Away, Good Stance, Pick Up Ball Off Bat, Cross Over Step, Drop Step, DS Drill, Get To Spot, Catch Ball, Fast-Slow-Fast, Throwing-Grip, Throw Using Body-Crow Hop, Make Accurate Throw
I just discovered my friend Tim stepped down as President of National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. (COOPERSTOWN, NY)
I came up here in 2018 on account of Blake, my 11 year old son was playing in the Cooperstown Dreams Park (www.cooperstowndreamspark.com) tournament. That was the first time either of us had ever been here before.
President of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, has announced that he will be resigning, effective May 15, 2021.
“I have been extremely blessed as a life-long fan of the game to spend four decades serving the organization I grew up admiring, and then have the distinct honor and privilege of assuming the role of President of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum,” Mead said. “The driving force behind my career in baseball has always been love of the game.
“I made the recent leap with every intention of following in the footsteps of my predecessors, in continuing their efforts in maintaining the Hall of Fame as a critical component of the game,” Mead continued. “Try as I might, even with the unwavering support of my family, these last 22 months have been challenging in maintaining my responsibilities to them.
“I want to thank Jane Forbes Clark and the amazing staff in Cooperstown for their dedication and commitment to Preserving History, Honoring Excellence and Connecting Generations. I am confident the fruits of their labor will continue to impact current and future generations in telling the important stories of the wonderful game of baseball.”
“It is with regret that the Executive Committee of the National Baseball Hall of Fame’s Board of Directors accepted Tim Mead’s resignation,” said Jane Forbes Clark, Chairman of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. “As a respected member of the baseball community, Tim has served the game of baseball for decades. His genuine appreciation for the game’s history and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum will be greatly missed by us.”
Mead, 62, was named President of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum on April 30, 2019 following a 40-year career working for the Los Angeles Angels organization, including the previous 22 years as the team’s Vice President of Communications.
A native of Athens, Greece, and a 1980 graduate of Cal Poly in Pomona, Calif., Mead began his career in baseball as an intern in the Angels’ Public Relations department in 1980, and his stint with the Angels included four years as Assistant General Manager from 1994-97.
Mead became the seventh president in the 82-year history of the organization. Past presidents include: Stephen C. Clark, Sr., founder of the Hall of Fame and grandfather of current Chairman, Jane Forbes Clark; Paul Kerr; Edward W. Stack; Donald C. Marr Jr.; Dale A. Petroskey; and Jeff Idelson.
JANE FORBES CLARK
Jane Forbes Clark is Chairman of the Board of Directors of The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. A member of the Board since 1992 and Chairman since 2000, she provides substantial museum expertise, philanthropic insight and management skill in this leadership position.
Cal Ripken Jr.
Cal Ripken Jr., elected as a director in 2019, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 following a distinguished 21-year career with the Baltimore Orioles. In 1995, Ripken broke Lou Gehrig’s Major League record for consecutive games played (2,130), and then went another three seasons before voluntarily ending the streak after playing his 2,632nd consecutive game on Sept. 20 1998. In his post-playing career, Ripken is using the platform that baseball has provided him to help grow the game he loves at the grassroots level. He owns Ripken Baseball and, along with his family, founded the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation. Ripken Baseball currently operates youth baseball complexes, while the foundation operates nationally and serves over one million youth each year through programs and the construction of multi-purpose youth fields that provide kids with safe places to play. Ripken is also a Sports Diplomacy Envoy for the U.S. State Department.
A director since 1995 and a member of the Pension Committee, Brooks Robinson played 23 seasons for the Baltimore Orioles, setting a number of major league records that still stand today. He was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1983. Widely respected inside and outside of Baseball, Robinson serves as president of the Major League Baseball Players Alumni.
I am a big believer, if you are going to do something, do it right! So, now that I’m in my 3 year umpiring, I might as well be the best.
Having attended the Cooperstown Baseball Hall of Fame during my debut umpire career June 2019, I learned that there were ONLY 10 umpires ever inducted. If baseball decides to continue after the Pandemic Covid-19, I already have plans to see Derek Jeter get inducted and work in CASV again.
Noted for his authoritative command of baseball rules, he earned the tongue-in-cheek nickname “God” from players, and was among the last major league umpires who never attended an umpiring school. Read more
Here are your World Series Umpires
The men in blue. Although it often looks black, yes? They still wear blue sometimes though so it probably doesn’t matter. Let’s just call ’em the baseball cops and not worry too much about what they’re wearing. Here are the baseball cops for the 2019 World Series: Alan Porter, Doug Eddings, Gary Cederstrom, James Hoye, Lance Barksdale, Sam Holbrook, and Jim Wolf. Read more
The umpires will wear a uniform patch in memory of umpire Eric Cooper, who passed away over the weekend. The patch will say “Coop.” Read more
Eric Cooper Dies at 52 Following Blood Clot
Less than two weeks removed from his 2019 AL Division Series assignment, MLB umpire Eric Cooper has died after a post-surgery blood clot, six years after Wally Bell’s heart attack during the 2013 postseason. Coop, who officiated the 2019 Twins-Yankees ALDS, was 52 years old.
Born on December 18, 1966 in Des Moines, Iowa, Cooper began his journey in Minor League Baseball in 1990’s Appalachian League and officiated his first major league game in 1996, becoming a member of the big league staff on the American League side in 1999.
Cooper had the plate for three no-hitters during his MLB career, and officiated three Wild Card Games (2015-17) 10 Division Series (2003, 05-06, 08-09, 11-14, 2019), three League Championship Series (2004, 15-17), and the 2014 World Series.
He had 72 career MLB ejections over nearly 2,800 career regular season games. His last MLB game was in service as the second base umpire for New York’s series-clinching victory in Minnesota on October 7; his crew chief for that series, Gary Cederstrom, will also chief the 2019 World Series.
Since I have been playing baseball around the time I started walking, I have gained a GREAT deal of admiration for the officials! It is very easy to pick on them. It’s bad enough when the fans yell, “boo, bad call, you’re blind”. As an umpire, you MUST have thick skin, in addition to being cool, calm & collected. All umpires understand they have a target on their back.
A good umpire often will tell you, “I did my job successfully if both teams are not happy”. In other words, the MOST important role is to be FAIR and IMPARTIAL. More importantly, when the players and coaches have respect for you, that’s when you know you did your job well enforcing the rules and keeping the peace.
Over 10 years of experience calling balls & strikes. I have to admit, it can be safer and less painful officiating behind pitcher’s mound for 8U, 10U and 12U because often the catcher does not keep me from getting hurt (e.g. many balls off the feet, shin, shoulder and mask).
Timing is everything! Sometimes, waiting that at extra half second can make all the difference in the world because you see the ball better, play it back in your head and get the call RIGHT.
The following ten umpires have been inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame:
Class of 1953 – Tommy Connolly(NL, 1898–1900; AL, 1901–1931)
Class of 1953 – Bill Klem (NL 1905–1941)
Class of 1973 – Billy Evans (AL, 1906–1927)
Class of 1974 – Jocko Conlan (NL1941–1964)
Class of 1976 – Cal Hubbard (AL, 1936–1951)
Class of 1989 – Al Barlick (NL, 1940–1943, 1946–1955, 1958–1971)
Class of 1992 – Bill McGowan (AL, 1925–1954)
Class of 1999 – Nestor Chylak (AL, 1954–1978)
Class of 2010 – Doug Harvey (NL1962–1992)
Class of 2013 – Hank O’Day (NL, 1895, 1897–1911, 1913, 1915–1927)
Harold Douglas Harvey (March 13, 1930 – January 13, 2018) was an umpire in Major League Baseball (MLB), who worked in the National League (NL) from 1962 through 1992. Noted for his authoritative command of baseball rules, he earned the tongue-in-cheek nickname “God” from players, and was among the last major league umpires who never attended an umpiring school. Harvey umpired five World Series and seven All-Star Games. His career total of 4,673 games ranked third in major league history at the time of his retirement. In 2010, he became the ninth umpire to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
In 1999, the Society for American Baseball Research ranked Harvey as the second-greatest umpire in history, behind only Bill Klem. In 2007, Referee magazine selected him as one of the 52 most influential figures in the history of sports officiating. Read more
Watch “The Baseball Hall of Fame Remembers Doug Harvey” on YouTubehttps://www.youtube.com/embed/nJqO1XF9UPY?version=3&rel=1&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&fs=1&hl=en&autohide=2&wmode=transparent
2019 had a very close call with a coach getting ejected. Read more
Major League Baseball today announced the umpires who have been assigned to the 2019 World Series, which is presented by YouTube TV. Gary Cederstrom, who is in his 26th season as a Major League Umpire, will work the Fall Classic for the fourth time, including his second assignment as its crew chief, as the American League Champion Houston Astros meet the National League Champion Washington Nationals.
Cederstrom, who was the crew chief for this Postseason’s American League Division Series between the New York Yankees and the Minnesota Twins, previously worked the Fall Classic in 2005, 2011 and 2015. The North Dakota native was the home plate umpire for Johan Santana’s 2012 no-hitter, the first in the history of the New York Mets. He will lead a crew that includes regular season crew chief Sam Holbrook, Lance Barksdale, Doug Eddings, James Hoye, Alan Porter and Jim Wolf. Porter will call balls and strikes in Game One of the Fall Classic in Houston. This is the third career Fall Classic for Holbrook; the second for Wolf; and the first for Barksdale, Eddings, Hoye and Porter. All seven umpires who will be on the field throughout the World Series were assigned to this year’s Division Series.
Wolf will serve as the Replay Official for Games One and Two of the World Series, after which he will join the on-field crew as the left field umpire for Game Three. Porter, the home plate umpire for Game One, will shift to Replay Official duties from Game Three through the conclusion of the World Series. The Replay Assistant throughout the Fall Classic will be regular season crew chief Jerry Meals, who worked one of this Postseason’s ALDS (HOU-TB). A complete listing of the rotation assigned to the 2019 World Series accompanies this press release.
Throughout the 2019 World Series, the umpires will wear a uniform patch in memory of 21-year Major League Umpire Eric Cooper, who passed away in recent days at the age of 52. “Coop,” who worked the 2014 World Series among his many career Postseason assignments, was active in programs with UMPS CARE Charities, the official philanthropy of MLB Umpires, including visits to pediatric hospitals and bringing underserved youth for behind-the-scenes ballpark visits.
The 2019 Postseason schedule can be viewed at MLB.com/postseason. All games exclusively covered by FOX will be available to MLB.TV subscribers who are authenticated subscribers to the applicable network through a participating pay TV provider. ESPN Radio will provide live national coverage of all 2019 World Series games. Read more
Have you ever said something you later regret? If you are like me, than it may also be true that you may find yourself in situations where people are speaking a different language (e.g. Spanish, French, Chinese, etc.).
Are they talking in code?
Do you know of any celebrities that speak their mind regardless of what other people think? Ever heard of Kanye West? What about Dennis Rodman?
And worse, do you have any insecurities and often think people are talking about you? Gossip kills!
What about hand signals?
Most people who have ever been to a ballgame have noticed the 3rd base coach touching the brim on his hat, followed by his nose, then his ear, and his arm. Then he does it all over again in a different order.
Is the bunt on? Hit-and-run? Steal?
Well, in baseball coaches and players are signaling each other the entire game. The catcher is telling the pitcher to throw a fastball or curve ball. When there is a runner on 2nd base, then he has to decipher it even more.
More importantly, great teams have strategized any situation and will plan accordingly. They tell the fielders to shift when a heavy hitter gets up to bat. Or perhaps there is a 1st and 3rd situation and want to be alert.
Besides being a huge fan of baseball for the past 53 years, I also played for over 20 years including a recent stint 2012-2019. Back in 1993 I started coaching and have been doing that ever since. Now adays I really enjoy umpiring. And yes, we use signals to tell each other (e.g. 2-man, 3-man, or even WS with 6 umpires) what to do in any situation with base runners.
This past weekend my son and I came up with a signal when there was a good hitter or fast base runner. If he is pitching he needs to keep the runner close – attempt pickoff. And you never want to throw a fast ball down the middle to a 3-hole.
I can’t get this video off my mind => Overcoming Hopelessnes – https://youtu.be/6P2nPI6CTlc by Nick Vujicic. I believe it was your friend the “traveling minister” who had a child of his own was physically disabled.
Is it politically correct to call someone a “midget”? What about “retarded”? Did you see the movie “Rainman”? Dustin Hoffman earns an academy award for playing the role of a man with autism. Watch => https://youtu.be/vqbXPfaN_VM
Unless you were living on the moon over the past year, you might be oblivious to the effects of COVID-19. There will always be conflict. Wars have been started over exchanging insults. Thus, the pandemic has only exasperated our society’s challenges with fear and differences.
Kim Kardashian Beach Boys cofounder Mike Love
LIFE, LIBERTY, AND CENSORSHIP? The First Amendment establishes separation between church and state, meaning that religion has no place in the government.
The Bill of Rights reflects the Christian heritage of our nation. The idea of human dignity, that we are created in the image of God, forms the theological basis for human equality and our core principle of liberty (Genesis 1:27, Leviticus 25:10, Matthew 25:40, Mark 12:31).
Ethnic, Racial and Retarded
Best baseball players of all time from Puerto Rico
Iván Rodríguez (Pudge)
Coach G – Dbat
Roberto Alomar is placed on MLB’s ineligible list after an investigation into alleged sexual misconduct by the Hall of Famer
Hall of Fame second baseman Roberto Alomar has been fired as a consultant by Major League Baseball and placed on the league’s ineligible list after an investigation into an allegation of sexual misconduct.
Commissioner Rob Manfred announced the firing Friday, saying in a statement that a baseball industry employee reported an incident earlier this year involving Alomar from 2014. The league hired an external legal firm to investigate the matter.
In this Spanish name, the first or paternal surname is Alomar and the second or maternal family name is Velázquez. Second baseman Born: February 5, 1968 (age 53) Ponce, Puerto Rico Batted: Switch Threw: Right MLB debut April 22, 1988, for the San Diego Padres Last MLB appearance September 5, 2004, for the Chicago White Sox MLB statistics Batting average .300 Hits 2,724 Home runs 210 Runs batted in 1,134 Stolen bases 474
Teams San Diego Padres (1988–1990) Toronto Blue Jays (1991–1995) Baltimore Orioles (1996–1998) Cleveland Indians (1999–2001) New York Mets (2002–2003) Chicago White Sox (2003) Arizona Diamondbacks (2004) Chicago White Sox (2004) Career highlights and awards 12× All-Star (1990–2001) 2× World Series champion (1992, 1993) ALCS MVP (1992) 10× Gold Glove Award (1991–1996, 1998–2001) 4× Silver Slugger Award (1992, 1996, 1999, 2000) Toronto Blue Jays No. 12 retired Baltimore Orioles Hall of Fame
Today was a very pleasant day for me. Varsity baseball game – Gilman Greyhounds @ Calvert Hall Cardinals. This stadium is arguably one of the nicest high school facilities within a 60 mile radius.
On my way out to my son’s baseball practice (Citius MD) I stopped off @ Overlea HS to check up on some improvements since the pandemic (e.g. new batting cages). As I got out of the car I was interrupted by a phone call from the President of Cooperstown HOF, Tim Mead.
Ironically, I only noticed the first name and I thought it was Tim Trembley (another great baseball hound working with Orioles in Sarasota). After a short “mistaken identity” serendipitous moment, we discussed some of the exciting young O’s talent who recently debuted @ Camden Yards.
What makes this story really interesting is the fact that Mr. Mead thought I was Brooks Robinson after a phone call shortly after we met when I was an umpire at Dream Park and All-Star Village.
You can watch the live streamed feed (Click here). When I found out the game was being televised, there were immediately quite a few reasons for wanting to watch 1 hour, 47 minute dual between two of the top MIAA teams.
2021 Major League Baseball draft
Sunday, July 11 and ends on Tuesday, July 13
As of April 29, 2021 he is ranked 94th on the Major League prospects this year (Read more ).
Heubeck has been committed to attend Wake Forest University since his sophomore year. He also ranked very high on National and Maryland State Rankings for both Perfect Game and PBR
Peter Heubeck is Gilman’s top weapon and was by far the primary reason and I studied his delivery.
This RHP is very smooth, gets into a nice timing motion with short back step, text book leg kick and had commanding control most of the game. He got into some big trouble early with a HBP followed by a BB which and an 1-3 ground ball error. It turns out this was the ONLY inning both teams manufactured runs resulting in a 2-1 victory for Coach Lou Eckerl.
You couldn’t tell from the press box, but apparently there were dozens of scouts and coaches in the stands with speed guns measuring Heubeck’s analytics (Read more ). I also really enjoyed watching the Gilman shortstop. Very fine player with sound mechanics and some razzle dazzle. He made two terrific plays in the 5th and 6th innings that very HS players would have made it look so easy.
Another reason why game was so significant is because Heubeck’s father was my classmate at John Carroll HS. Rob and I grew up together in Bel Air, MD and were teammates in baseball, we also played years of soccer together. I specifically remember Rob having two younger brothers and all three of them were GREAT athletes. Moreover, Rob has been extremely successful accepting the role as Dean of Students a few years ago @ Gilman.
Then there is Larry Sheets. I never knew this until years later that he was drafted higher than Cal Ripken, Jr. When Larry played left field for the Orioles I remember how the entire stadium would get behind him, rooting him on, “L-A-R-R-Y, L-A-R-R-Y”. Followed by Home Run. Great power hitter. Best of all when I approached him back in 2017 and asked if would be interested in helping my son’s baseball league he didn’t hesitate saying, “Yes”. Great guy and funny sense of humor! Read more
June 6, 1978: Drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in the 2nd round of the 1978 amateur draft (29th). Baltimore Orioles drafted Ripken in the second round of the 1978 Major League Baseball draft 48th overall.
With the Major League Baseball Draft upon us, I thought I would create a sort of Major League Draft cheat sheet, so those who follow can learn the history of the draft, how it’s currently set up and perhaps offer answers to the most asked question, “what do scouts look for?”
The Major League Baseball Draft
The year 1965 marked the beginning of the MLB First-Year Player Draft and for many years since, amateur players and their parents have waited in anticipation of the big day (or in recent years, the big three days). Under the current collective bargaining agreement, the draft lasts 40 rounds, plus compensatory picks.
Who Evaluates The Players?
Each Major League organization is equipped with multiple full-time scouts which include area scouts (and their part-time helpers called “bird dogs”), national cross-checkers and scouting directors. They all work together in collecting names, going out and evaluating players in games and showcases, writing reports on those players and begin to compile information on a white board they will use in the Draft Room come draft day.
Professional scouts are everywhere. Their mission is the find the next “great one,” and they go to great lengths to unearth the next MLB superstar. But for every “can’t miss stars” like Dave Winfield, Ken Griffey, Jr, Tony Gwynn and Mike Trout, there are many others who have been drafted and reach the Major Leagues without much fanfare. It’s this kind of hard work behind the scenes each and every year, that goes relatively unnoticed by the casual fan, but undoubtedly shapes the future of Major League Baseball.
What Are the 5 Tools That Scouts Evaluate?
Speed – how you run and how much range you have. Arm strength – self-explanatory! Fielding – what’s your fielding ability and your actions. How good is your footwork? Hit – can you hit for average? Your overall hitting ability. Hit for Power – hardest thing for scouts to find in baseball. It’s a coveted skill set valued by all 30 teams. Here is the kicker. In today’s game the most asked question is, “Is there a 5-tool player?” In my opinion the answer is NO. There are a few that comes close, possessing 3-4 tools. But to be exceptional across the board and possess all 5 tools, has hardly ever been seen. There are 2 players in my lifetime that might have displayed all 5 tools – Bo Jackson and Josh Hamilton. And it’s fascinating that neither of them will ever be in the Hall of Fame – for different reasons.
Overall, scouts are looking for athletes. They want to evaluate a player who understands how to play the game (which is rare in today’s day game because of showcase baseball and private cage lessons). They can tell the player who has specialized in baseball with private lessons since age 6. They want guys who have experience playing other sports, being coached by different coaches, and have played in different arenas with different competitive experiences.
If you want to learn how your tools can get you drafted, Chicago Cubs National Crosschecker Tim Adkins, laid this out beautifully for us on KWB Radio. You can listen to his episode here.
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What’s the 20-80 Grading Scale Scouts Use To Evaluate?
Scouts use a grading scale using the numbers 20-80 (or 2-8 for some organizations) to evaluate players. 20 is the lowest grade that a player can get, with 80 being the highest. Most prospects will hover around the 50 mark, which indicates the average grade of tools possessed by a current MLB player.
So how do they come up an overall number for a player? They simply grade all tools out on the 20-80 scale, rate them, then divide them out based on the number (5), thus giving you the overall number. Once you get the number, it gives you the parameters of where that player is projected.
What scouts are also trying to project is how can the player meet his upside down the road? Does that tool the scout is putting on him project out a few years from now and develop to play in the big leagues? Physical limitations are different for each player. Everyone’s ceilings are different. Scouts will ask themselves – when a player reaches his ceiling how can he be consistent? Does he have what it takes to be consistent?
This brings up the question, does average play in the big leagues? If you ask the scouts it’s a resounding YES. Most of the prospects they are evaluating for the draft have present-average tools. We sat down with New York Mets area scout Jim Thompson for Episode 18 on KWB Radio, to talk about how average plays and what he looks for when evaluating a player. You can listen to our conversation here.
Are you wondering if selling average to a scouting director is hard?
It’s actually not hard at all.
In fact, after the first couple of rounds, the argument in the “war room” is who do you think has the best chance to get to the big leagues and perform at that level being consistently average?
What’s the Best Venue To Evaluate a Player?
If you ask the scouts, they want to see a player compete in a meaningful game. In 2013 when I was the hitting coach for the USA Baseball 18U National Team, we played in the IBAF World Cup in Taichung, Taiwan and most, if not all, of the MLB teams were represented by at least one scout, scouting director or front office member. Why? Because for all of the USA players, except one returning member, this was the first time they would play in a meaningful game. The scouts wanted to see if the skills they saw all summer at the showcase events would transfer into high stakes, highly intensive and meaningful games when the players were playing for a Gold Medal.
I understand not everyone is going to have the opportunity to play for USA Baseball, so whenever a scout can see a player play in a high school, college, summer ball or American Legion game, scouts will take the opportunity to evaluate a player in a game setting, no matter where it is.
What Scouts Look For In Position Players
OUTFIELD – If you’re a corner OF, you don’t need to be plus defender, but you also don’t want to be known as below average. With that being said, your bat will have to play better than average. You need to hit. And as one scout puts it, “corner outfielder’s need to display power, power, power.” In CF, they are looking for plus defense and range and they want to see you hit, and if you have any power.
CORNER INFIELD – Scouts are looking for a power/hit combo at the corners. At 3B you need to be able to play above average defense, as well as showcase the power/hit tool. At 1B, you need to be adequate on defense, but most importantly show that you’re an offensive player first and foremost.
MIDDLE INFIELD – At shortstop, scouts are looking for defense (range, footwork, arm strength), see if you can hit, hit for power. At second base, they are looking to see your hit tool, do you have any power, and how does your defense play.
CATCHER – You need the ability to call the game yourself, handle the pitching staff and control running game. Your bat doesn’t need to be as important when evaluating.
What Does a Scout Look For In a Hitter?
The swing has to be simple. Not a lot of extra stuff in swing. Some scouts will differ on what’s more important – bat speed over strength, but they all look for whether a hitter has control of his barrel. They want to see looseness in swing. Being calm in the box = confidence in their eyes. They want to see how it comes off the bat.
Consistency is huge – strikeout to BB ratio is huge – can you square up a ball and do you know the strike zone and have an approach?
Can you produce extra base hits (doubles and RBI’s pay bills at the MLB level)?
Power comes at a premium – it’s the standout tool for hitters.
There are some things that scare scouts when evaluating hitters. A big one is swing and miss. Another is, if you’re fouling balls off all the time, what makes a scout think you’re going to be better than that in pro ball?
What Does a Scout Look For In a Pitcher?
What does his arm action and delivery look like? Can he repeat his mechanics? What kind of athlete is he? They will dig into the background of a pitcher to find things like: does he have a personal pitching coach; does he throw all year long; what makes him tick on the mound? What kind of bullpen routine does he have? Is he a “stuff” guys who pound the strike zone?
They are also evaluating whether a pitching prospect will be a starter or have to go to the bullpen in professional baseball, by observing the ease of how the mechanics work because that will help you stay in starting rotation at the next level. The pitchers who have good feel of a changeup stand out because that helps them move through a minor league system quicker.
A pitcher does not necessarily have to have a swing and miss pitch, to be drafted. If he has average pitches, command is superior in order for the average stuff to play.
And last but not least, what kind of competitor is he?
What Happens During an In-Home Visit?
The purpose of an in-home visit is for the scouts to get to know the player and his family better. They answer any questions that the family has about the process, about the team or anything else that comes up in conversation. If you don’t get an in-home visit from a scout, it doesn’t mean you will not have a chance to get drafted; it just means you probably will have to wait a few rounds (or days) until you get your name called. These visits are typically reserved for the prospects projected to go in the top few rounds.
Will A Player Be Seen If He’s Not On A Popular Travel Team?
YES. With technology today, if you’re a prospect and you’re good enough, scouts will find you.
How Do I Get My Name Submitted For the Draft?
In order to be eligible to be drafted, your name has to be submitted to the Major League Baseball Scouting Bureau by a scout from an MLB organization. Once your name has been submitted, you will be assigned an identification number. You are not eligible to be drafted unless you are in the system and have been issued an ID number by Major League Baseball.
Bottom line, scouts are looking for a player who likes to work. He needs to know the game, not just be a showcase player. There is baseball IQ that is lacking among young players today, and it definitely shows up when the games start.
Scouts will tell you that tools get you drafted, but becoming a baseball player will get you to the big leagues.
If you’re a prospect, don’t forget the most important, but hardest part of all of this – enjoy the process!
Finding-Clarity-ebook-phone-social ORDER MY NEW eBOOK “FINDING CLARITY”
“You won’t find a one-size-fits-all philosophy in Finding Clarity. Instead, players from all levels will begin to find their individual purpose, their WHY and ultimately themselves.”
Adam Haseley (Philadelphia Phillies)
For more than a decade, Kevin Wilson has been one of the most respected hitting coaches in the game. He works behind the scenes as a private hitting consultant to some of the best hitters in Major League Baseball. In 2013, Kevin was the hitting coach for the USA Baseball 18U National Team. Team USA beat Japan for the Gold medal at the IBAF World Cup in Taichung, Taiwan.
He is the author of the Amazon #1 Best Sellers The #GoodBatting Book and Finding Clarity: A Mindful Look Into the Art of Hitting and co-hosts a popular podcast, KWB Radio, that showcases unique conversations with the pros. If you want Kevin to speak at your next event or if you want take advantage of his popular 2-day KWB Experience for players and coaches, contact Kevin today!
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Rating The Physical Tools Of A Potential Major League Player
Major League Baseball’s scout rating system explained
Here’s one of the best explanations of the professional baseball’s scout rating systems that I have found. Some organizations use the 20/80 scale others use 2 to 8. They are the same thing.
A 2 or 20 is the low end of the scale and 8 or 80 is the high end.
Scouts typically use two numbers when grading, such as 4/6 or 3/5. The first number is the player’s current rating on the 2 to 8 scale the second is his “projected” future professional baseball rating. Of course those numbers are based on the individual scout’s opinion.
When only one number is given, such as a 7, it is usually (almost always) that scout’s projection opinion of that player’s professional baseball potential.
This is a tool that is often overlooked by ball players today and one of the most lacking tools at the major league level. With 10 teams playing on artificial surfaces, making fielders play their position deeper, a strong arm is even more necessary today than in the past. The player with a strong arm will have less teams take a chance by running against him thus preventing runs from scoring. Thus a team with a weak throwing outfield or catcher will have more opportunities taken against them leading to more throwing errors and more runs given up.
When scouts are evaluating a players arm strength it is usually during pre-game infield-outfield practice. A scout will get to see several throws by the outfielders to second, third, and home plate. If a player has a good arm, chances are he will show it here, particularly on throws to home plate. Scouts are looking for four things from outfielders: a strong overhand throw, a straight-line trajectory, good carry, and good life on the turf when the ball finally hits the ground.
A strong arm is also necessary for infielders particularly the shortstop and third baseman. Scouts will pay the most attention to throws made from the outfield grass from deep short. If a player has a strong arm, it will show here. Look for a straight-line trajectory, strong hissing noise, and a sharp smack in the first baseman glove.
Foot speed is the only common denominator of offense and defense. This is one tool that does not go into slumps. A fast runner is of greater priority for clubs that play on artificial turf because they are playing in a bigger park and the ball travels faster than on grass. A fast outfielder may be able to catch up to two more balls a game thus saving his ball club an average of one run a game. The same player can steal bases thus putting ore pressure on the defense and making the pitchers throw more fastballs.
A players running speed is usually timed in two ways; 60 yard dash and from home to first. The average major league time is 6.9 for the 60 yard dash, from home to first 4.3 seconds for right handed hitters and 4.2 seconds for left handed hitters. The clock start on times from home to first on the crack of the bat to when the foot hits first base. A fast runner at the major league level can run home to first in 4.0 seconds or below. The ability to run, will force fielders to rush their throws and make more throwing errors. A team without speed will often have to hold their runners at third base thus scoring less runs.
Home To First (Right Side): 8: 4.0 seconds 7: 4.1 seconds 6: 4.2 seconds 5: 4.3 seconds 4: 4.4 seconds 3: 4.5 seconds 2: 4.6 seconds
Home To First (Left Side): 8: 3.9 seconds 7: 4.0 seconds 6: 4.1 seconds 5: 4.2 seconds 4: 4.3 seconds 3: 4.4 seconds 2: 4.5 seconds
This is the one tool that has the greatest chance of improvement. While you can not develop great foot speed or a great arm, fielding has the greatest chances of improvement with contest practice. When judging fielding scouts are looking for a number of traits:
(Quick Feet) the ability to move quickly laterally and forward and back. (Range) how much ground does he cover? (Soft Hands) the ability to catch the ball smoothly in the center the glove. (Quick Hands) the ability to field bad hops. Hitting Ability
This is the most difficult tool to scout because you are judging a hitter on how they will hit do at the major league level, by watching them hit against amateur pitching. There are a lot of amateur hitters that will look great against amateur pitching and then fall flat on their face once they enter professional baseball. A hitter should have these lists of skills:
(Bat Speed) the ability to swing the bat quickly
The ability to consistently hit the ball hard. Knowledge of the strike zone The ability to turn on a major league fastball. The ability to hit breaking pitches. The ability to hit to all fields. The ability to make adjustments at the plate when fooled. Hitting With Power
Hitting the ball for power is one of the more desirable traits for any hitter, unfortunately it is often the most poorly projected tool at the major league level. In order to hit for power, a hitter needs outstanding batspeed. Batspeed is what makes the ball travel and all outstanding hitters have it. A hitter with major league power will regularly hit the ball over the fence in batting practice and should be able to drive the ball over 400 feet.
A lot of care should be taken when judging amateur hitters swinging aluminum bats. The aluminum bat has a greater hitting surface, and because they are lighter they can be swung with much greater bat speed, driving the ball 18% farther than with wooden bats. A 400 foot drive with a wood bat will travel 470 feet with aluminum. So many hitters are home run hitters swinging aluminum become warning track hitters with a wood bat. It is very important for hitters to get used to a wooden bat before signing into professional baseball. Most hitters find they have a tough time getting used to not driving the ball they way they used to in college or high school baseball.
What Scouts Look For – In Pitchers
When scouting a pitcher the first quality a scout will look for is a strong arm. This is a God-given talent that can only be improved to a certain degree. One game under a radar gun will tell if the pitcher has the arm strength to be a major league prospect.
There are two basic models of radar guns used to clock the speed of fastballs. The Jugs Speed Gun (Fast Gun) will pick up the speed of the fastball after it has traveled 3.5 feet and the Ra-Gun (Slow Gun) will pick up the speed after the ball has traveled 40-50 feet. A fastball will lose 8 mph from the time it leaves the pitchers hand to the time it crosses home plate. The JUGS speed Gun is usually 3-4mph faster than the Ra-Gun.
The average major league fastball is 88-89 mph on a JUGS Speed Gun and 84-85 mph on the Ra-Gun. Scouts will rarely if ever sign a pitcher who does not throw at least 85 mph on the JUGS Speed Gun.
CHECKLIST FOR GRADING PITCHERS
Fastball- The first thing a scout looks for is a fastball with good velocity and movement. A fastball should sink, rise, slide or tail. A major league fastball is in the high 80’s. Curveball- When grading a curveball, scouts look for a fast tight rotation on the ball. A good curveball will break both laterally and downward about two feet. A good curve ball gives the illusion of falling off the table with its sharp downward breaking motion as it approaches home plate. Slider- A good slider can be a tremendous compliment to a good fastball. A good slider will have a tight lateral spin, like a bullet. A slider will break about 6-18 inches as it approaches home plate. It should look like a fastball until it breaks across the plate. Change Up- A good change up can be a tremendous asset to any pitcher by making fastball seem that much quicker to the hitter. A good change-up should look identical to the hitter only it travels 15-20 mph slower than the fastball. It will make the hitter way out in front of the pitch. Delivery- A pitchers delivery should be as smooth as possible. It should look effort-less with no mechanical problems like: throwing across the body, landing on a stiff front leg, overstriding, landing on the heel or his arm lagging behind his body. Any mechanical problems left uncorrected can lead to control and arm problems. Control- The ability to throw strikes on a consistent basis is vital for any pitcher to have success at the major league level. If the pitcher has less than overpowering stuff his control becomes even more important to his success. A good pitcher will be able to throw 70% of their pitches for strikes and can throw breaking pitches for strikes when behind in the count. Pitchers Velocity: 8: 98 mph + 7: 93-97 mph 6: 90-92 mph 5: 88-89 mph 4: 85-87 mph 3: 83-84 mph 2: 82 mph –
What Scouts Look For In Catchers
A good catcher is vital to the success of a championship team. The catcher will provide leadership on the field and work with the pitcher when setting up the hitters and calling the game. The catcher must be durable and is responsible for the teams defense. A catcher needs soft hands , quick feet and the ability to block pitches in the dirt. A good catcher can catch and throw to second base under 2.0 seconds, some catchers can break 1.8 seconds.
Catchers Release Times to Second Base: 8: 1.7 seconds – below 7: 1.7-1.8 seconds 6: 1.8-1.9 seconds 5: 1.9-2.0 seconds 4: 2.0-2.1 seconds 3: 2.1-2.2 seconds 2: 2.2-2.3 seconds
What Scouts Look For In Infielders
A good infield is worth it wait in gold to a successful team. A strong defense will take the opposition out of more rallies and save wear and tear on the pitching staff.
Teams are looking for these qualities in their infielders.
Arm Strength: A strong arm is especially necessary from the shortstop who will often be making throws up to 150 feet flat-footed on the edge of the outfield grass. The third baseman also needs a strong arm when called upon to make throws up to 120 feet from along the foul line. Look to see if the infielders throws are straight and do not die as they approach the first baseman.
Range: Look for infielders with good body control. They need first-step quickness able to field the ball to their left, right, over their head and able to charge the ball and come up throwing. Also they need soft hands, able to move their hands quickly and smoothly to bad hops and sharply hit line drives
What Scouts Look For In Outfielders
A good outfielder is vital to the make up for a successful team. Although most outfielders are in the lineup for their bats, their defensive skills can not be overlooked. Scouts are looking for these basic skills from outfielders
Arm Strength: A strong arm is vital for the defensive make up of the outfield. A strong arm will cut down baserunners trying to score and prevent runners from taking extra bases. When evaluating a players arm strength, it is important to be at the game in time to see infield-outfield practice. If the player has a strong arm, chances are he will show it here. Teams will often decide whether to run on a team by the strength of the arms demonstrated before the game. You should look for four things from outfielders: a strong overhand throw, a straight-line trajectory, good carry, and good life off the turf when the ball finally hits the grounds. A strong arm is vital for right field because he will often be called on to make throws to third base and home plate up to 275 feet.
Range: A good outfielder will be able to cover a lot of ground in the outfield. The center fielder has the most territory to cover, so obviously getting a good jump on the ball and having good speed is vital for a good outfielder. The outfielder must be able to field ground and fly balls and come up throwing. Outfielders need to be able judge how hard a ball is hit and be able to field fly balls hit over his center fielder requires the most speed and the right fielder the strongest arm. A good center fielder can run the 60 yard dash in under 6.6 seconds.
Left and right fielders should run the 60 yard dash under 6.8 seconds.
What Scouts Look For In Hitters
This is the hardest all tools to predict whether a player will hit major league pitching because you often do not know whether they will hit at the major league level until they get there.
The quality the most necessary to become a major league hitter is a smooth quick level swing. A player with a quick bat can wait on the pitches longer therefore have a better chance of hitting the ball harder. Another important quality to look for is a good knowledge of the strike zone. A player will not become a good hitter by swinging at pitches outside the strike zone. The more patient the hitter is, the more dangerous they become.
When watching a hitter play close attention to his hands when he strides. If a player drops or raises his hands when the pitch is being delivered, he increases his chances of not hitting the ball hard. The hands should go back, the less unnecessary movement, the better. The harder the pitcher is throwing, the more mechanically correct the hitter needs to be to hit. A hitter that lunges, doesn’t keep his hands back, hitches or has a pronounced uppercut will not hit at a consistent level.
When evaluating hitters focus on tools, not statistics. You should scout tools not performance. Statistic are good for evaluating weaknesses. A hitter with a high strikeout and low walk total is swinging at too many bad pitches, unless corrected will never hit at a constant level.
A hitter should be able to turn on a good fastball on the inside part of the plate. If he can’t, he has little chance of becoming a good hitter, because pitchers must throw inside to be successful at the major league level. A hitter must be able to hit breaking pitches or he will not last at the major league or minor league level. Once word gets out about a hitters can1t hit the breaking pitches, he will see nothing else until he learns to hit it.
The player’s makeup is vital to his success in professional baseball. Often the player with the greatest desire will develop into a better ball player than the one with better physical tools. Most of the players when they sent to the minor leagues, are used to being the star on their team and often have never been in a slump or have lost a game before. This for many players is difficult to accept. For the first time in their lives, they are knocked out in the first inning or go 0 for 4. If a player can overcome this, they have a better chance of reaching their goal of playing in the major leagues.
One of the most important factors in a player’s makeup is whether they can adjust to being away from home. Most high school players have never been away from home for any length of time and many are not prepared mentally to handle the long bus rides, bad lights, and poor playing conditions. For many college players, the minors is a step down from playing on good fields, good lighting, flying, and large attendance.
The college player often comes into the minor leagues more mature because he has been away from home, but a player with a college degree may quit after two years if he does not feel he is being promoted quick enough. It is very difficult for players to see their teammates being promoted while they are staying put. A player who works hard and puts up good numbers in the minor leagues will be noticed by the organization.
PLAYER CHECKLIST — (what to look for in a player)
CATCHERS: Arm strength, agility and quickness, soft hands, aggressiveness plus leadership.
INFIELDERS: Arm Strength, speed, instincts, aggressiveness, soft hands, hitting ability (especially from the corners).
HITTERS: Strength, bat speed, plane of swing, absence of fear, aggressiveness, top-hand extension, and follow-though.
PITCHERS: Arm strength, velocity, movement, and a curveball with tight rotation, free arm action and proper delivery, with complete extension on the follow-though (basically a live, quick arm, aggressiveness, and the ability to concentrate.
MAKEUP: Strong desire to succeed, coachability, maturity, temperament, improvement, drive, hunger, consistency, knowledge of the game, competitiveness, (how badly does the player want to reach the major leagues and how well he will work at.)
PHYSICAL CHANGES: Has he reached his full height yet? Can he gain or lose weight? Will he become faster or slower? Has he filled out yet? Does he a have history of being hurt? How much has his skills improved from last year.
Does the player have the physical tools plus the strong make up to play in the major leagues. Only about 10% of the players who sign a minor league contract will.
Former Calvert Hall infielder Jose Torres and Gilman pitcher Peter Heubeck taken in third round of 2021 MLB draft
Two former Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference baseball standouts — Calvert Hall 2019 graduate Jose Torres and recent Gilman grad Peter Heubeck — were third-round selections in the Major League Baseball amateur draft on Monday.
Torres, who was The Sun’s 2019 All-Metro Player of the Year and played shortstop at North Carolina State, was taken by the Cincinnati Reds with the 89th overall pick. Heubeck, a 6-foot-3 pitcher who is a Wake Forest commit, was selected by the defending World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers with the 101st pick.
Heubeck, who turns 19 on July 22, led the Greyhounds to their first league championship title since 2010 in May. He added to his special year when he got a call from the Dodgers on Monday afternoon.
Recent Gilman grad Peter Heubeck, pitching against John Carroll in the MIAA A Conference tournament at Gilman on May 20, was taken by the Los Angeles Dodgers with the 101st overall pick in the MLB draft on Monday. (Kim Hairston/The Baltimore Sun) “That moment was unreal and I still haven’t processed it fully, but it’s the best feeling ever. It was awesome,” he said.
A hard-throwing right-hander who touches the mid-90s with his fastball and also throws a curveball and change-up, Heubeck switched from catcher to pitcher in his freshman season in 2018 and was a varsity standout throughout his career.
MLB Draft 2021: Dodgers select RHP Peter Heubeck in the 3rd round
With their second pick in the 2021 MLB Draft, the Dodgers selected right-handed pitcher Peter Heubeck from Gilman High School in Baltimore. He’s currently committed to Wake Forest.
Dodgers selected him with the 101st pick in the third round. This was their second selection in the MLB Draft, as they lost their second round pick with the signing of free-agent pitcher Trevor Bauer.
He’s ranked as the No. 105 overall prospect by Baseball America
slender, 6-foot-3, 170-pound righthander, Heubeck has flashed a loud three-pitch mix and has only improved his game since flashing stuff with inconsistent control last summer. Heubeck has a loose and fast arm and has been up into the mid 90s at his best, though he more typically sits in the 90-93 mph range. His best secondary pitch is a hard, downer curveball in the mid 70s with 12-to-6 shape and impressive depth. He also throws a low-80s changeup that was seen as a distant third pitch last summer but scouts this spring…
Orioles AA Affiliate – CLICK HERE Cheap seats ONLY $16 Bowie Baysox. Only 30 minutes away $8 Military discount. Plus FREE gift magnet. Buy Tickets Here
More importantly I have never been to Bowie I’ve been to Ripken Stadium a few times but I think the Minor League games are better cuz you can it’s it feels more like an old-fashioned baseball game and you can get down really close and sometimes get autographs from the players 2 years ago the current Baltimore Orioles had two pictures that were in the minor leagues that are now playing in the pros Zimmerman and another relief pitcher.
Zac and Brianna Lowther crashed just after Saturday night’s Orioles game ended, having put their 3-month-old daughter, Isabelle, to bed just a few hours earlier. Brianna and Isabelle had joined Zac in Maryland earlier in the day, getting to spend some time with him as the left-hander pitched at the Orioles’ alternate training site in Bowie awaiting a promotion to Baltimore.
As the couple faded to sleep, Zac’s phone rang loudly, with him having left the ring tone volume up high. He worried it would wake Isabelle. Instead, it startled Brianna, who asked what happened.
“Oh, I just got called up,” Zac replied. “Is this a dream?” Brianna asked in a daze.
In some ways, it certainly was. Zac Lowther, the Orioles’ No. 19 prospect per Baseball America, was promoted to the major leagues for the first time. After Baltimore officials delivered the good news, he went into the bathroom to call his and Brianna’s parents and share it with them. They were all in attendance for Sunday’s 8-1 victory against the Oakland Athletics, in which Lowther pitched a scoreless ninth inning in his major league debut. Read more
What is it called when you strike out 3 times in a game?
Joe DiMaggio recalled he had more difficulty batting against Harder than just about any other pitcher, hitting only . 180 lifetime against him, striking out 3 times in one game in 1940. His nickname was the chief and he played his entire career with the Cleveland Indians. Read more
Everyone often remembers the great batters (offensive players), but forget who were the amazing pitchers (defensive players) in baseball. For example, ask a young player today if he’s heard of Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan or the “Rocket” Roger Clemens? Often you’ll get a response, “never heard of them”. However, Mel Harder is the notorious pitcher who struck out DiMaggio. Read more
Strike 3 (Times Five). Giancarlo Stanton’s Whiffs Make the Record Books
When Giancarlo Stanton struck out for the fifth time on Sunday and left the field at Yankee Stadium to a chorus of boos, he was not merely having a bad game. He was putting himself in the record books. And there may well be more record-breaking, of the wrong kind, to come. Read more
This morning I “googled” the number of times a MLB player struck out 3 times in one game. Unfortunately, my son Blake struck out 3 times yesterday in a “single elimination playoff game” against some of the BEST 13 year old boys in the region.
In slang, when a batter strikes out three times in a game, he is said to have completed a hat trick. If he strikes out four times, it is called a golden sombrero. He receives a platinum sombrero if he strikes out five times, and this dishonor is also known as the Olympic Rings.
Age (years) 50th percentile height for boys in inches (feet)
8 50.4 in. (4.2′) 9 52.6 in. (4.5′) 10 54.5 in. (4.6′)
11 56.4 in. (4.8′) 12 58.7 in. (4.11′) 13 61.4 in. (5.1′) 14 64.6 in. (5.5′) 15 66.9 in. (5.7′) 16 68.3 in. (5.8′) 17 69.1 in. (5.9′) 18 69.3 in. (5.9′)
In baseball or softball, a strikeout (or strike-out) occurs when a batter racks up three strikes during a time at bat. It usually means the batter is out. A strikeout is a statistic recorded for both pitchers and batters, and is denoted by K. A “strikeout looking”—in which the batter does not swing and the third strike is called by the umpire—is usually denoted by a ꓘ.
Although a strikeout suggests that the pitcher dominated the batter, the free-swinging style that generates home runs also leaves batters susceptible to striking out. Some of the greatest home run hitters of all time—such as Alex Rodriguez, Reggie Jackson, and Jim Thome—were notorious for striking out.
Rules A pitched ball is ruled a ball by the umpire if the batter did not swing at it and, in that umpire’s judgement, it does not pass through the strike zone. Any pitch at which the batter swings unsuccessfully or, that in that umpire’s judgement passes through the strike zone, is ruled a strike. Each ball and strike affects the count, which is incremented for each pitched ball with the exception of a foul ball on any count with two strikes. That is, a third strike may only occur by the batter swinging and missing at a pitched ball, or the pitched ball being ruled a strike by the umpire with no swing by the batter. A pitched ball that is struck by the batter with the bat on any count, and is not a foul ball or foul tip, is in play. A batter may also strike out by bunting, even if the ball is hit into foul territory.
A pitcher receives credit for (and a batter is charged with) a strikeout on any third strike, but a batter is out only if one of the following is true:
The third strike is pitched and caught in flight by the catcher (including foul tips); On any third strike, if a baserunner is on first and there are zero or one outs; The third strike is bunted foul and is not caught by a fielder. Thus, it is possible for a batter to strike out, but still become a runner and reach base safely if the catcher is unable to catch the third strike cleanly, and he then does not either tag out the batter or force him out at first base. In Japan, this is called furinige (振り逃げ), or “swing and escape”. In Major League Baseball, it is known as an uncaught third strike. When this happens, a strikeout is recorded for both the pitcher and the batter, but no out is recorded. Because of this, a pitcher may occasionally be able to record more than three strikeouts in one half-inning.
It is also possible for a strikeout to result in a fielder’s choice. With the bases loaded and two strikes with two outs, the catcher drops the ball or catches it on the bounce. The batter-runner is obliged to run for first base and other base-runners are obliged to attempt to advance one base. Should the catcher field the ball and step on home plate before the runner from third base can score, then the runner from third base is forced out. Read more
Upper Reserve Section 344-354 (Rows 13-25). The individual ticket price is normally $17.00 for Upper Reserve. Additional 10% transaction fee ($1.00 per ticket). If you are having trouble connecting to MLB ticket order entry site, copy & paste the following url into your browser address bar: www.orioles.com/rolandpark
What do people learn going to a professional baseball game? Well, if you have never been before, it’s FUN! Not to mention, Camden Yards is considered one of the BEST stadiums in Major League Baseball in the entire country. It’s both exciting and entertaining. It can be very competitive and suspenseful depending on the pitchers.
As a Head Coach for over 10 years, I am a “student of the game” and continue to learn new things going to a live baseball game. In my own experience, the benefits are countless!
Whether you are going with your son or going as a team, it’s a great bonding experience. Plus, the coach often can learn more about the player be better able to relate to them. Best of all, the kids witness first-hand, real time some of the best professionals in a chosen field of discipline – baseball. Watching MLB players performing at the highest level of skill is awesome, especially when you consider how much they are getting paid.
Coaches and baseball teams can build on all the PRACTICE hours, days and weeks trying to run drills by explaining situations and the reasons why. There is also a well-known FACT in the “Art of Pedogogy” – people can learn from reading it in a book, listening, watching or doing.
Teaching fundamental skills is very difficult if you don’t have much passion, interest and some natural ability. Read more
Having been to a large number of summer/fall showcases and tournaments, I can tell you the wasted feeling of having your son play in front of nobody. We’ve been to tournaments where you feel there isn’t a scout within a hundred miles. Now partly that’s on the showcase organization. They have the opportunity to pick the tournaments well in advance and they know which ones are going to attract the most colleges.
But you want to be able to walk around and simply bump into a half-dozen college coaches on your way to the restroom! Call it the “restroom test” or whatever you want to call it. It’s a feeling that there are a ton of scouts watching and thank goodness my son has the opportunity to play in front of these guys, whatever the result.
So without further delay, here are my top five tournaments for college recruiting followed by my top five showcases for college recruiting. Note, these were selected with college recruiting as the top priority versus pro-scouts, and without any hard college attendance numbers (I’m always skeptical of these numbers anyway). It’s the “restroom test” based on our actual experiences from what we’ve seen with our own two eyes or heard from other reliable parents.
Top 5 Tournaments For College Recruiting
PerfectGame – 16U WWBA National Championship (Cartersville, GA – early July)
Honorable Mention: ProspectWire – World Series (Pt. St. Lucie – late July), Prospect Select – Black Bear Classic (Greenville, SC – late June), Prospect Select – Boston Open (Boston – mid July)
Note: The PerfectGame WWBA World Championship held in October in Jupiter, Florida, is a phenomenal tournament, but from what I saw, it was mainly for pro scouts. Many of the players were already committed to colleges years prior.
Top 5 Showcases for College Recruiting
PerfectGame – Junior National Showcase (Ft. Myers, FL – early June)
PerfectGame – Fall Top Prospect National Showcase (Cartersville, GA – late Oct)
PerfectGame – National Academic Showcase (Cartersville, GA – mid July)
ProspectSelect – Black Bear Select (Clemson Univ, SC – late June)
ProspectSelect – TOPPS Palm Beach (Palm Beach, FL – early June)
Honorable Mention: Many large showcase travel team organizations have their own showcases in November or early January. These showcases can attract large numbers of college coaches. I’ve been at one where there were close to 80 colleges. These are fantastic showcases to attend in lieu or in addition to the above.
Note: The PerfectGame National Showcase is “the” primetime national showcase. However, mostly all the players who attend have already committed to college and this is mainly a pro-scout showcase.
Behind the Curtain
But the caveat is that your showcase travel team better play at the right venues when they get to the heavily attended tournaments. What do I mean by that? Well, these tournaments are huge. 200+ teams in just one age group. Yes, that’s right. Some have over 300 teams. Imagine what the scheduling is like. A nightmare. They take every minor league complex and high school field within a 50-mile radius.
Thankfully there’s usually a hub centered around a minor league complex with eight+ fields or if you’re PerfectGame, you build a state-of-the-art complex in north Atlanta with a dozen+ fields. The scouts, as you might imagine for efficiency reasons, congregate around these “hubs”. It’s easier for them to see more players rather than driving 30-minutes away to some remote high school where they might just see one, maybe two, players. Sure, the scouts will go to the remote high school but if you’re constantly playing at these remote high school fields, then your coaches better be texting or hitting the phones non-stop to get the colleges to show up. It’s tough. Yes, your son can send emails or texts to coaches with his tournament schedule if he knows they’re at the tournament. But normally that’s hit or miss.
If your son plays for a larger showcase travel organization who brings 5+ teams in the same age group, then the likelihood of the best “prime” team getting to play at more “hubs” is greater than the organization who brings just two teams. Just saying. I have no hard evidence that this indeed happens regularly, but I’ve seen the scheduling and that’s just how it feels.
Also, with regards to showcases, be very cautious. Some are very expensive and at the end of the day, they won’t give your son the exposure. Some require tryouts and further progression in order to get to their national showcase. You can spin your wheels going from tryout to tryout with little to no exposure and then be left out of their “All-American” game or national showcase in the end. Read more
Travel Baseball: The Ultimate Guide for Parents and Players
For many families, the transition from Little League to travel baseball comes with stress, anxiety and questions about what to look for in a team and what to expect from the experience — not to mention the question of whether making the switch from a more laid-back rec ball program to a more competitive (and expensive) travel club is the right decision in the first place.
What is Travel Baseball? First, it’s important to understand what a travel baseball team is and how travel baseball is organized. There are tens of thousands of travel baseball teams around the country, and their popularity has exploded over the past two decades. As recently as the 1990s, travel baseball was a niche experience limited mostly to elite players in baseball-rich areas like Texas and California. Today, participation is seen by many as a near necessity for talented players to develop their skills and hone their game against the best competition they can find.
Whereas Little League is the dominant organization when it comes to recreational youth baseball, there are multiple organizations throughout the country that host hundreds of travel tournaments each year. Some of the biggest and most popular are USSSA (United States Speciality Sports Association), AAU (Amateur Athletic Union), Triple Crown Sports, and Perfect Game. Travel baseball teams often participate in tournaments organized by more than one of those organizations.
A team can be started by anyone. Many are formed by parents, but many others are formed by high school and former college coaches. Depending on their organizational goals, some programs have just one team that participates in one age bracket (such as 10 and under), while some are run like businesses and have teams that compete in every age group.
Here are eight things to think about when evaluating teams. These factors will make a big difference when it comes to your overall experience, so take the time to think about them, and don’t be afraid to ask questions of parents and coaches.
Coaching: A coaching staff can make or break a team. How coaches manage players, keep the game fun, instill the fundamentals, and focus on development — not only as athletes, but as young men and women — is extremely important. Some travel baseball teams have parents or grandparents serving as the head coach. While that can be fine, it’s important to make sure those coaches don’t make keeping their own child on the field a priority. Before committing to a team, spend some time researching it by watching a practice and talking to current and/or former players and parents.
Cost: For many parents, this is the most terrifying aspect of travel baseball. Just how much of a toll is this going to take on your bank account? The specific answer varies, but the typical range of cost for participating in travel baseball is between $500 and $2,500 per year. There are a number of specific factors that go into how much it costs to be on a team: * Where you live. * Whether you have to buy your own equipment. * Whether you have to rent facilities. * Whether or not coaches are paid. * How competitive the team is.
Location: As stated earlier, location is a key factor in deciding which travel team to play for. If you’re fortunate enough to live in California, Florida or Texas, you’re going to have a lot of opportunities to play with and against high-level competition right in your backyard. But outside of those states, it’s a little bit tougher, and you have to decide how committed you are to playing at the highest possible level. So you’ll be faced with the following choice: play on a lower level team that’s closer to home, or drive a hundred miles or more for twice-weekly practices? It may sound crazy, but many families do just that. Why would they commit so much time and money to their son or daughter’s athletic pursuits? It comes down to goals. Better teams often provide better coaching and more opportunities for exposure to college and professional scouts.
Mission: What’s the team’s mission? Is the focus on fun, player development, college exposure, or a mix of all there? Teams can have many different goals and missions, and there’s no right or wrong approach. However, it is possible that a team’s mission does not align with your values and goals, and you need to think about this before committing, as a compatibility mismatch can lead to coach-parent and coach-player tension.
Organization: Consider the reputation of the organization you’re evaluating. When you join a team, you and your son or daughter will essentially be endorsing everything the program stands for. If they’re known for dirty play or being disrespectful to the game, you’ll be associated with that. And believe it or not, the baseball world is a small and surprisingly tight-knit community. College coaches tend to know which programs produce bad apples — and they avoid them. In fact, many college coaches will completely write off an entire organization that has a reputation for not playing the game the right way or for having disrespectful players.
Playing Time: There’s an important balance between getting enough playing time and being challenged. Before committing, ask the coaching staff what kind of playing time your child can expect — including at what position. If there are two returning shortstops, he or she most likely won’t be playing there and might have to learn another position. That’s not a bad thing: college coaches want players that are versatile, and many players change positions as they get older and their bodies develop.
Skill Level: Be realistic about your child’s skill level, and pay attention to the level of competition around him or her at tryouts (i.e., the skill levels of the other players). If your kid has the fight and desire to compete for a spot (like they’ll have to do if they make it to college ball), then putting them on a team where they’ll be challenged is the best option. But if he or she is there to have fun and make friends, with no burning desire to be constantly improving, then choosing a travel team that’s more low-key will be the better call.
What You’re Giving Up: Travel baseball tournaments are on weekends, and players often have to sacrifice certain things that are part of a normal childhood. Is your son or daughter willing to miss out on things like birthdays, sleepovers and school dances, because most of their time is spent doing homework, traveling to and from games and practices, practicing on their own (possibly including private lessons), and spending nearly every summer weekend at the ballpark?
For some, their love of the game is so great that giving up these things is a no-brainer. For others, they may regret missing out on these social activities. And that’s perfectly fine! Just be honest with each other and talk about the true costs of travel baseball — because it’s not just the sticker price.
Travel Baseball Pros and Cons
There are positives and negatives when it comes to travel baseball. Here are a few of each.
Better competition: Players are more serious about the game and more driven to improve. This higher level of competition will help push your son or daughter to improve their own skills.
Better coaching: Travel baseball coaches tend to be better qualified, more knowledgeable, and better-connected. At the highest levels of travel ball, teams often employ former professional coaches.
More exposure: Aside from high school baseball, travel ball is the primary means of exposure to college coaches and pro scouts. Plus, travel teams often attend showcase tournaments and camps.
More games played: Travel teams play significantly more games per year than rec ball teams.
Facilitates travel: Sometimes seen as an ancillary benefit, the travel itself can be a valuable and eye-opening experience for players. Many kids don’t have an opportunity to travel out of their own area or state, and travel baseball can provide that.
Encourages character development: Because travel teams are more serious, there’s a greater emphasis put on things like being on time, demonstrating maximum effort, and having a good attitude.
Cost: Travel baseball is expensive — sometimes absurdly so. Families often spend around $2,500 per year, but the costs can be even higher.
Time commitment: Even a moderately competitive travel team can consume an entire summer’s worth of weekends.
Ultra-competitive: On most travel teams, there’s a balance between player development and winning. What you won’t often find is an “everybody plays” approach. For the most part, the best players will play the most, which makes for a highly-competitive environment.
Tougher workouts: This can be a pro or a con, depending on the player’s perspective and goals. Tougher workouts can lead to better outcomes, but they can also be mentally and physically taxing if the player isn’t fully invested.
Lack of diversity: Because travel baseball is expensive, it has often been criticized for a lack of socioeconomic and racial diversity.
Remember, this is your child’s choice to. Help them see the pros and cons of each option. And although we stated it earlier, we cannot stress this enough: you cannot dictate your son or daughter’s commitment to the game of baseball. It’s up to them. So, support them in whatever capacity they want to participate. If you do, they’ll never regret or forget the amazing experiences, friends, and lessons learned playing this great game. Read more
Tippy Martinez, retired MLB pitcher showed up after the Championship game for a “photo op”. He was a major weapon in the 1983 Baltimore Orioles World Series Championship over the Phillies. Read more
Notice the diversity of kids. This was another banner year because Emmanuel who batted in the 4-hole struggled all season. However, he came alive when it counted. He hit 2 bombs completely out of the ballpark (over 300 feet as an 11 year old). They are still the longest balls ever hit on Memorial Field.
The Panthers are looking for rising stars to join our 14U travel baseball team this coming season. Players must NOT turn 15 before May 1, 2021.
Saturday, September 5, 2020 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM Fullerton Park
4400 Fullerton Avenue, 21236
Those interested in a private/Covid-safe tryout need to register online and send an email to email@example.com.
About Our Program:
FUNDAMENTALS! As Head Coach, I could not say enough about the mistakes many, many young players, parents and coaches make when it comes to teaching kids the basic ingredients of baseball. “Repetition is the MOTHER of SKILL”. Cal Ripken says, “Practice does not make perfect. Rather Perfect Practice does”.
It doesn’t matter if you are 8 years old or 18 years old, the key ingredient is: Development, Playing Time and being around a Competitive Environment. My Top 3 Goals at every practice and every game is to have FUN, do your BEST and always behave in a way that exemplifies good SPORTSMANSHIP.
Coach Brooks played little league travel baseball since he could walk and won the 18U Maryland State Championship, was a former high school athlete with over 8 varsity letters and even played competitive baseball on some semi-pro teams. He has been coaching for over 10 years and has experience coaching on several high schools in the Baltimore area.
Scott Massengill, Assistant Coach also has enormous sports background and great attitude about the game. He has coached for over 5 years and loves seeing players develop!
We will compete in the M.A.B.A. as well as Regional Tournaments in the Fall, Spring and Summer. Approximate cost will be $500 per player (subject to change depending on sponsorships and fundraising). We have a variety of training opportunities offered throughout the off season and in season such as position specific development clinics, indoor facilities @ Extra Innings and NCAA college player instruction.