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Jun 20 2005 10:10 AM

I've gushed on these pages before about soupcan jrs. LL coach and what a great coach and guy he is but what he did yesterday just goes above and beyond.

My town's 2nd grade Little League is classified as an 'instructional league' which means that the coaches pitch, there are no bunts or base stealing and we don't keep score. Teams are up until three outs are made or they score 4 runs - whichever comes first.

Yesterday was the Padres last game of the season and it was a thrilling one to watch. The Pods finally recorded three outs in consecutive innings to retire their opponents. The coaching staff as well as the parents were kvelling. Although we don't keep score some of us actually do and the Pods crushed the overmatched Razorbacks 12-3.

After the game there was a seaon-ending barbeque at one of the coach's houses. Head Coach Bob said that he had some things to give the boys in appreciation for a great year (this was in addition to the trophies that the league provdes) Now Bob had already been giving the boys baseball cards after practices all year so already the guy was just being incredibly generous, but what he gave them on Sunday was just above and beyond.

First he gathered the coaches - 4 of us - 2 official, 2 unofficial - and presented us with mustard colored Nike baseball hats with the old San Diego Padres logo of the friar swinging the bat. When he was done thanking us he pulled out enough of those hats for every kid on the team. Now that alone would've been enough but he then pulled out another box and presented each kid with an official San Diego Padres home jersey with each kid's last name and the number 05 on the back. The kids were ecstatic and all of us were just floored.

Afterwards the boys filled up a huge bucket of water and doused him Gatorade-style. It was just a great, great experience. Bob is a really good guy and a great, caring coach. For those of you with young kids I hope you get to experience a coach like this guy. Regardless of all the swag, he was so nice and patient with the kids, never letting any of them get down, constantly encouraging each one of them and always having enough time to explain and instruct.

My son is a better kid - not to mention ballplayer - for having had him as a coach.

Jun 20 2005 10:15 AM

Props to Bob! Wish I could say I had experiences that great in Little League!

Jun 20 2005 10:57 AM

The final game of the team I coach was played a week ago Saturday and was called on account of lightning with us behind by 4, the bases loaded and our best hitter up. We had a pretty rotten won-lost record this year but had a good time yesterday, picnic, trophy and stat presentation. I didn't get them any Padre uniforms but I did go 0-for-3 in the parent/kid game, much to the delight of the squad.

Willets Point
Jun 20 2005 11:00 AM

I joined up with a recreational soccer team recently, playing for the first time since I was 10. I remember I stopped playing because I hated my coach and teammates even though I liked playing. I wish my soccer coach was like your baseball coach.

Jun 20 2005 11:01 AM

Sounds like a nice Father's Day gift for all!

Edgy DC
Jun 20 2005 11:13 AM

My dad would custom hand-illustrate a baseball for each member of his team.

I don't know where he found the time.

Oh, yeah, he never goofed off on the internet.

Jun 20 2005 11:14 AM

Neat, what did he draw on them?

Jun 20 2005 11:21 AM

Very nice soup - Bob sounds like a fabulous guy!

Edgy DC
Jun 20 2005 11:38 AM
Edited 1 time(s), most recently on Jun 20 2005 11:48 AM

Neat, what did he draw on them?

Fun awards in ballooning letters. For instance, for three seasons he coached the Halperin Shoes team . (Our teams back then bore the names of our sponsors.)

Halperin Shoes

=darkred]Jimmie Diodato

With the 1979

=darkblue]Big Stick Award

Let's Go Bad News Shoes!


Halperin Shoes

=darkred]Brian Boggiano

With the 1979

=darkblue]Super Hustle Guy Award

Let's Go Bad News Shoes!

Thankfully, he spared me the "You-Only-Played-Because-You're-My-Son Award."

If you like, I can scan in the picture of all of us holding our balls.

That didn't come out right.

Jun 20 2005 11:45 AM

Of course we want to see that!

We still have sponsers here, my son played for

Woolrich, Inc. (tee ball)
Miller's Lawn and Garden (minors)
Restless Oaks Restaurant (majors)
Woolrich, Inc. (teener)

My daughter played for

Woolrich, Inc (tee ball)
Chatham Run Mill (softball, but quit cos of bitchy coach)

Jun 20 2005 11:50 AM

Whole lotta Woolrich on that list. Do I sense some nepotism in the team sponsorship?

Jun 20 2005 11:51 AM

We have the sponsors names on the back of our unis too.

The Padres were sponsored by of which coach Bob happens to be the president and ceo.

I like what your dad did Edgy. Very cool - was he a generally artistic guy or just thought it a good idea and ran with it?

Jun 20 2005 11:51 AM

No :)
I didn't even work here then!

Jun 20 2005 11:52 AM

I did a similar thing this year, 'cept I used a computer to do it and attached some digital photos of the kids on their various awards. Sometimes it was a real stretch to come up with something notable about a player, hence the Stylin' at First Base Award. In past years I would give them awards which would link them to MLB players (the Hank Aaron Award, etc.) Our sponsor this year was Yes Bank. Never heard of them, never have seen a branch, seems too MFYish to me.

Edgy DC
Jun 20 2005 12:01 PM

My dad was a generally artistic guy, but rarely found an outlet for it.

When I coached pee-wees, I couldn't not follow the example. What we did was make up fake contracts for them announcing their signing for a million dollars to play their favorite position for their favorite team.

Two thirds, it seemed, had second base as their favorite position and the Mets as their favorite team. So it seems the Mets should have about 10 27 year-old secondbasemen about now.

Jun 20 2005 12:02 PM

A million dollars? That's it? Your players needed better agents.

Edgy DC
Jun 20 2005 12:18 PM

It was like 1984 or so.

And they were rookies.

Jun 20 2005 12:49 PM

If the league were run using the Met organizational philosophy, they would keep sending all the best players back to the instructional league. (is there a Brooklyn team in yor league?)


Jun 21 2005 08:48 PM

Check 'em out...

Jun 21 2005 08:56 PM

I meant to post on this thread, great story and great pic.

Jun 21 2005 08:59 PM

very nice

Edgy DC
Jun 21 2005 09:42 PM

That kid in the middle row to the left flashing some sort of gang sign?

Jun 22 2005 01:37 AM

damn that is a great story and a cool fella. i would have killed to have that guy coach me as a kid. my coach only cared about winning, even at the expense of instruction. i was a fast kid, and our age for whatever reason it was very easy for a fast kid to get on with a bunt. so i was rarely given a chance to swing away and learn how to really hit, i just bunted all the damn time. i hated it. he even had a batting cage in his backyard and i would practice bunting over and over, smashing my little fingers.

and also we had a really intense set of signals that were impossible to remember. mostly we were given the take sign over and over because kids were too young to throw strikes and we would walk alot, and win alot. anyways, once i missed a take sign and hit a triple and the dude actually yelled at me in front of everyone in the middle of a game. it sucked.

i couldnt stand it, and i quit the team. they went on to win something pretty good like city championship after i left. i switched to soccer, which was awesome, but i would have been more likely to stick with both for twice the fun if this dude hadnt been so terrible.

ouch that was a long and stupid story i told. the point is that your coach rules and i will try and be like him if i ever get to coach kids.

Jun 22 2005 06:52 AM

He's buttoning his shirt wise-ass.

I live in Westport, CT man, the only thing that comes close to a gang out there are the 3 10th graders that hang out in the Starbucks parking lot chugging espresso for the caffeine high.

Edgy DC wrote:
That kid in the middle row to the left flashing some sort of gang sign?

Edgy DC
Jun 22 2005 07:05 AM

I don't know, I see Baseball Furies on the neighbor's lawn, getting all baggy pantsed with their shirt-tails down to their knees and caps on backward, I'm making a bee-line for the Volvo, Doris.

Jun 22 2005 07:44 AM

Gotta hand it to you Edgy, you can be pretty funny when you want to.

Edgy DC
Jun 24 2005 07:14 AM

Thanks. So, like, whenever I'm not funny, or desperately un-funny, understand it as I didn't want to be funny.

Anyhow, the Bad News Shoes have returned.

Johnny Dickshot
Jun 24 2005 07:55 AM

Look out, Westport! Here they come!

Frayed Knot
Jun 24 2005 08:30 AM

So are we supposed to play "Guess the Edgy" w/that picture?

I'm going w/the kid in the upper left who looks like he's holding a
slice of watermelon instead of a ball.

Edgy DC
Jun 24 2005 08:33 AM

Put the name with the face for your Halperin Shoes.

Ellen Abrams
Eve Abrams
Andrew Appell
David Attonito
John Attonito
Brian Boggiano
Jimmy Diodato
James Farrell
Anthony Fiedler
Eric Gladstone
Artie Hoyt
Edward Hoyt
Rob Kaiden
Stevie Rubenstein
Bob Wolf
Kennny Wolf

Johnny Dickshot
Jun 24 2005 08:57 AM

Bottom Row (L to R): Rob Kaiden, Bob Wolf, Artie Hoyt, Kennny Wolf, Stevie Rubenstein, Jimmy Diodato

MIDDLE ROW (l-r): Andrew Appell , Eve Abrams, Ellen Abrams, John Attonito, David Attonito, Eric Gladstone

TOP Row (l-r): Edward Hoyt, Anthony Fielder, Brian Boggiano, James Farrell

Edgy DC
Jun 24 2005 09:03 AM

Dickshot did some good old-fashioned Little League butt-kicking. Seven out of 15.

Bottom Row (L to R): __________, Bob Wolf, Artie Hoyt, Kennny Wolf, __________, __________

MIDDLE ROW (l-r): __________, Eve Abrams, __________, __________, David Attonito, __________

TOP Row (l-r): Edward Hoyt, Anthony Fielder, __________, __________

Still needed:
Ellen Abrams
Andrew Appell
John Attonito
Brian Boggiano
Jimmy Diodato
James Farrell
Rob Kaiden
Stevie Rubenstein

Willets Point
Jun 24 2005 09:10 AM

I'm sorry but in those lavender uniforms no matter how well you did on the field, I'm sure you got your ass kicked off the field.

Edgy DC
Jun 24 2005 09:25 AM

There weren't a whole lot of good looking unis in that league.

Jun 24 2005 09:41 AM

How come you weren't sitting with your dad? Kenny Wolf got to sit near his dad.

Johnny Dickshot
Jun 24 2005 09:50 AM

Maybe if his dad looked like Bruce Jenner he would have.

Edgy DC
Jun 24 2005 10:05 AM

I can give you a bio for everybody in that picture. I know them (at least who they were at that moment) better than my office-mates of five years. I could tell you the lineup that day also. I don't remember any other baseball, soccer, etc. team I played on this way.

Bob Wolf indeed was a happenin' seventies guy in the Jenner mold. Great teeth and shoulders and a cool sports car to boot. (He drove a Porsche, before we knew how lame that was.) He did commercial acting, though the only one I ever saw him in was for Vivi Jeans, playing the song-and-dance paterfamilias in a commercial pushing Vivis as the designer jean for families.

He also had a swinging baritone voice, a la Billy Dee Williams. He metioned once that he rarely watched football, and it shocked me to think that there was a warm-blooded American male who didn't waste seven hours or more every Sunday watching football.

I was almost jealous that he wasn't my dad, who looked scruffy and smokey and rumpled and slope-shouldered next to he-man Bob. But then I realized that my dad still got to pop perps for a living. And that was really cool. Bob was a really good guy, though, for all his Ken-doll perfectness.

If you have to ask why I'm chilling in the back stuffing my fat face with watermelon, you don't know me well.

Jun 29 2005 02:14 PM

This is a separate Little League issue. Parents who take this stuff WAY too seriously.

My friend and neighbor (who has four kids, btw) is a major Little League volunteer. Not only is she the volunteer coordinator (I don't know how she handles that job - I wouldn't last five minutes before shooting the first person who complained about not getting his bond back despite the fact that he didn't show up for his volunteer duty), but she's also in charge of the uniforms. It's a major task, especially since our kids' All Star uniforms have their names on the back, and there's only a short window of time between the time that the teams are finalized and the tournaments begin. This woman is a saint, IMO, to take on this kind of task.

So what is her thanks for this? Apparently the parents of the 10-year-old All Stars have been giving her nothing but grief. The league president thought that it would be nice to give these kids a nicer uniform this year, and the guy from the uniform shop suggested mesh jerseys, which have been popular with other leagues in the area.

Well, the 10-year-old parents are NOT happy with the uniforms. OK - that's fine. Some experiments just don't work out. But instead of dealing with this like adults and living with the shirts for the next month, these people have been complaining incessantly about the uniforms.

Come on people - get a life! In six months, is anyone on this earth going to care about these uniforms? Even if they are horrible (I don't know whether they are or aren't - I haven't seen them), it's just for a few weeks. Meanwhile, my friend and the league president are volunteers here - without them, there wouldn't be a Little League at all in this township.

Get a life people!

Jun 29 2005 02:32 PM

Parents whining about the uniforms?

That's just stupid. Our kids played the season in t-shirts with the team name screen-printed across the front, sponsor and number on the back and they were tickled.

Do I like the uniforms? Not particularly, but I'm not the one wearing it so why does my opinion matter?

Jun 29 2005 02:36 PM

It's better to look good than to play good.....

Jul 09 2005 04:25 PM

Mini Knight's 8-year-old All Stars team is in a tournament. Last week they won their first game by forfeit (against a team that also forfeited a game today, and lost another game in between). On Thursday they won a game by the Mercy Rule, and today they lost a game by the Mercy Rule. So tomorrow is a Big Game for his team - if they win, they advance to the elimination round.

I don't think they have any expectation of winning the whole thing - the team that clobbered them today is one of the favorites to win the tournament. But it would be nice if they could win a couple of games before this tournament ends.

Otherwise, a new tournament starts next weekend....

Jul 09 2005 06:16 PM

Mercy Mercy Mercy.

Jul 10 2005 12:23 PM

MK's team recovered from an early 3-0 deficit for a convincing 8-3 win. MK took a ball to the back ribs while at the plate, but he recovered from that and came around to score the tying run. He's a little tank <g>

Now onto the elimination style playoffs, starting Tuesday!

Jul 11 2005 02:12 PM

We had a sandlot pickup game on Sunday morning. There were about 10 kids so we did a dads (and mom) against the kids.

We let the boys pitch but since the lot of them have never pitched (they are 8 and they'll all pitch, catch and stea bases next season) I was the catcher.

I am bruised something awful today. While batting against these imps they twice plunked me, while catching the little freaks I two balls off my ankles.

Still and all a fun time.

Jul 12 2005 07:28 PM

Wow - MK's team scored two runs in the bottom of the 6th to win their quarterfinal game 4-3! MK had an RBI in the second inning. The other team's three runs came on sacrifices and walks - it was actually a no hitter.

So they play again tomorrow. MK is actually scheduled to pitch two innings, against a much tougher opponent. Eek!

Jul 13 2005 08:33 AM

Scarlet, what time is today's game?

Jul 13 2005 08:38 AM

6:00 pm, weather permitting.

Which means that, in order for me to see the game, I'll have to drop La Diva off for her Bye Bye Birdie rehearsal over an hour early, since she's supposed to be there 7:00-10:00. Ugh.

Jul 13 2005 08:45 AM

She'll have a license soon...

Jul 13 2005 08:47 AM

A year and a half is not soon.

Jul 13 2005 08:56 AM

I thought she would be sixteen this fall?
My, you are strict!

Jul 13 2005 08:58 AM

Hey - I'd let her drive tomorrow if it was up to me.

She can't get her permit until she's 16. Then the lessons start. Even if she gets her license in short order, she has to have it for a full year before she's allowed to drive on her own.

Such are the rules of the suburban hell in which I live.

Jul 13 2005 09:07 AM

Praise the lord, you are getting her lessons!

I swear when we were in NJ last week, our common thought was that it takes very little to gain a drivers license in NJ. Also, turn signals do not seem to be required.

PA is much less strict than that, six months with a permit (50 hours minimum practice with a 21 year old or over in attendance) and you're golden, though you are not allowed to drive past midnight alone.

Anyway, the reason I asked in the first place is, if I am able to access our PC this evening, I will be available for email moral support...

Jul 13 2005 09:17 AM

They are required to have a set number of driving lessons in order to get their licenses.

And thanks. I'll have the Sidekick with me. And, unlike last night, I don't think my friend will be free to come down to watch the game with me.

Jul 13 2005 09:58 AM


Little League.

Driver's Ed would be in another forum thankyouverymuch.

Jul 13 2005 10:03 AM

Tough. Schlepping one's other children to other events and racing back to the field is part of the Little League experience in these parts.

Jul 13 2005 10:04 AM

Eh, we safely delivered it back to LL when I offered moral support.

Lets see some Sunday sandlot pictures.

Jul 13 2005 10:07 AM

Argh - I tried to post a photo of the kid, but it didn't work :(

Jul 13 2005 06:15 PM

All good things must come to an end, including MK's team's participation in this tournament. It was a tough game against a very good opponent, and the fact that the mercy rule didn't kick in until the bottom of the 5th with 2 outs was something of a moral victory.

MK did pitch an inning (for the first time in this tournament), and got knocked around a bit (although a little help from the defense would have lessened the damage a bit). He's a perfectionist at the best of times, and tonight was not the best of times. But I'm proud of him anyway (albeit worried that the kid is going to give himself an ulcer over Little League - with everything else in life he rolls with the punches, but he expects nothing less than perfection from himself while he's playing, and when he's less than perfect he's very hard on himself).

Thanks cooby for your company and moral support during the game - I really appreciated that!

Onto the next tournament, which starts this weekend....

Edgy DC
Jul 15 2005 07:34 PM


Rockin' Doc
Jul 15 2005 09:47 PM

Disgusting to think that there are people like this insensitive ass coaching children. That idiot should never be allowed to coach or teach kids again.

Edgy DC
Jul 15 2005 10:25 PM

Well, it's still alleged, but I hope, if true, that he may get a sanction apart from any that a youth sports league might give him.

Jul 16 2005 04:43 AM

Whoah indeed. That's a disturbing story.

Rockin' Doc
Jul 16 2005 05:06 AM

Edgy - "Well, it's still alleged, but I hope, if true, that he may get a sanction apart from any that a youth sports league might give him."

Agreed. I definitely placed the cart before the horse so to speak regarding this incident, but the thought of such actions against a child is simply revolting to me and I let my emotions take over. Until the event in question can fully be investigated, the coach should refrain from all coaching of children. Should the allegations be found to be true, then he deserves any penalties that the law allows for such crimes against a minor.

Unfortunately, I have witnessed enough over zealous coaches and parents during my years of association with youth league sports that I would not be surprised if such an event actually took place. There are far too many adults trying to live out their own fantasies of athletic achievement through their children and/or players.

Jul 16 2005 06:27 AM

Sheesh! And I thought the coaches who were trying to decoy the umps into making bad calls last week were bad.

There are some real wackos out there :(

Jul 16 2005 03:42 PM

I had a great game today! We won 15-4 (the game was called early on account of lightning). At bat, I struck out my first two times but then I launched a triple into right field! I played a pretty good game on defense, with an outfield assist at home plate from center field!

Hope I do well tomorrow.

Jul 16 2005 04:03 PM

Nice game, MK. Go out there and win one for the Gipper tomorrow too.

Jul 16 2005 04:34 PM

Thanks seawolf. MK is now asking his dad to explain to him who The Gipper was <g>

Jul 18 2005 07:30 AM

MK had a nice game yesterday - he got a hit, and he pitched an inning. He's still new at pitching, and developing. He only gave up one run, which is definite improvement. My stomach still knots up with tension seeing him on the mound, but he's making some real progress.

His number this summer is 16, so when he's at first he's Mientkiewicz, and when he's pitching he's Gooden (except he's white, a lefty, and not a cokehead).

Jul 19 2005 07:19 PM

Alas, the playoffs are not in the cards for this tournament. Our 8-year-olds lost to our cross-town rivals this evening. Even if they win on Friday night, that will be our last game of the season.

On the bright side, our boys have had their first taste of kid pitch baseball that counts, and I think they had a good time participating in the two tournaments this summer. MK got a lot of good experience this summer.

Jul 23 2005 10:30 AM

As we figured, MK's team finished up the All Stars season last night. It's just as well - he went right from the regular season to All Stars, and I think we could all use a break before he starts Fall Ball.

Edgy DC
Jul 29 2005 08:55 PM

"Hey, Julio, shut-o el mouth-o."

Aug 10 2005 11:15 AM

My 12-year-old just showed me how to post this image of MK. He'll be helping me with my IT class this fall.

In the meantime, how do you like that form?

Aug 12 2005 08:13 PM

In case anyone's interested, the playoffs have started on ESPN, they'll get more interesting later.

I hate this, it makes me think summer is over.