While I won't start getting assignments from my new association for another week or so, I'm still cutting my teeth on games for the local Little League. We have nice little park with 3 fields called Siether Stadium. It felt great to get back out there for my sophomore season. My fiance and sons even came down to the field to watch.
I've been told I call too literal of a strike zone for U12 games so I've been working on "opening her up" a bit... Night and day difference. Hardly any complaints. Only a few scattered walks throughout the tight game. And I didn't feel like I was robbing any kids either.
Right out the gate, I forget the shirt for the LL at home (sigh!). Fortunatly I had my new association shirt and it was plenty acceptable.
The F2 in the bottom of the 1st inning had probably never even seen a baseball glove, let alone played F2 before... Took a shot in the left elbow on an inside pitch early, not too bad, but when he let one right down the pipe past him untouched and off my inner thigh (just missing testing out my new NuttyBuddy) I was starting to become pretty jumpy back there... Luckily, one of the veterans taught me how to deal with this: I caught the coach at the next opportune time in order to be discreet and told him "I can't see those corner strikes if I'm bailing out." He understood and sent a better (though still new) F2 next inning... Being a former F2 myself, I felt a bit bad, but it was pretty necessary.
Had a bit of an interesting play on a wild pitch that scored a run which I will discuss in a separate post (and add a link here)
My game management has gotten a lot better (also a result of calling more strikes) and we almost completed the game. Unfortunately this is the one spot where I dropped the ball a bit today... We play with a hard 2 hour time limit and any unfinished inning reverts back to the score at the start of the inning unless the home team takes the lead... So it's 4-4 in the top of the 5th and we have about a half hour left.. I figure we have plenty of time and don't realize that the 5th inning slowed to a crawl... The HT comes up in the bottom of the inning and plates a cheap LL run (walk, 2 easy SB, score on weak ground ball with no play anywhere).. 2 batters later the coach informs me that we are at time limit. HT wins 5-4... I followed the rules and didn't do anything wrong, but I wish I had realized we were up against the wall and that the R3 carried the game in his pocket. I would have ended the game there instead of leading to the confusion (and minor, expected griping) of having other batters come to the plate... Ehhh, you live and you learn. Maybe it's time for a very not-phone-looking pocket watch so I can keep better track of time without worrying about looking unprofessional.
All in all a great way to get the season started and I already feel the lessons from my new associations school starting to sink in.
Gonna be a great year!
Good luck out there brothers!