I don’t really want to start out this post with a complaint, but I will. I know I have to bite my tongue just a little bit longer but it will seem like an eternity if I don’t just vent right here…right now. Here in Illinois we have an organization, Game Day USA. They host a great deal of youth baseball traveling tournaments. This may seem one sided and for now, it is.
We were scheduled to play a game on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The time on Friday was one that was not exactly convenient…for anyone, and especially, the Plainfield Diamond Kings. Why? Because the first game was scheduled at 4:15pm on Friday. So, you are thinking, what is the problem, right? Well, the problem is that our boys do not get out of school until 3:40pm. We are about 45 minutes (on a good traffic day) from the field. There is/was no way we would have made it there…even if we didn’t get a pre-game practice in there. We tried to get the time pushed back a little…we provided additional options, but the organization basically said, we can’t change the time….people like to socialize with friends and family on Friday….they actually prefer an earlier game…that they have to work with many different teams, blah blah blah and if you can’t make it…well then you are left with no other choice but to forfeit. I am sure their sponsors (according to their website, Baseball Youth Magazine, Rawlings and a few others) wouldn’t be too happy to hear that they prefers to line their pockets instead of working with teams and setting reasonable game times. After all…all schools are still in session! And, much to my surprise, the team we were playing made a comment on their own website stating the time of the game wasn’t great….but that Game Day wouldn’t change it. Instead of pulling our boys out of school early…we stuck to our guns *as it clearly would send a wrong message to our kids* and accepted our forfeit.
So…we move on to Saturday. We had an 8am game time and then again at 10am. We arrived at the field at 7:15am in the freezing cold (33 degrees to be exact) and watched the boys as they began to play the game they love to play…baseball. All the parents were bundled trying to stay as warm as we could while being the best cheerleaders ever!
Game 1, we played the Wasco Warriors. Scott’s first at bat he got a single and his second time at bat resulted in a walk.
It was a great game (even though the other team did an annoying clapping thing to try and distract our pitcher…sorry, it didn’t work with our boys…they brought their A game). Even with their somewhat sly tactics, we ended up winning by slaughter, 16-1.
Game one…ovah!!!! On to game two.
Game two started at 10, and we played the Southside Rage. The boys were just getting started. And, it was still FREEZING!!! We noticed a slight problem as the boys were running to home plate, that once they got there, if they didn’t slide on their own, their cleats didn’t catch very well and they ended up slipping and sliding on the plate itself which caused a few to stumble, twist an ankle and while none of our boys were seriously injured…they very well could have been.
Scott’s first time at bat…here’s what happened…(listen for the “thump”, lol)
And here he is getting ready to slide into home.
By this time, we were telling the boys to slide into home plate no matter what! Scott went on to get another single. It was pretty uneventful in the outfield today. However, we went on to win game two…slaughter rule…16-1. It was quite the exciting time. You see, because we were forced into a forfeit on Friday, it was essential for us to win both games to qualify for the championship spot on Sunday. We were more than happy that they boys went there with a mission to win, and did. We were some pretty proud parents, to say the least!
We all left the field, still cold, but I think that being so excited with our two wins, it warmed our hearts just enough to get us home…we had two victories under our belt and we needed one more in order to play for the big prize on Sunday…first place.