Common Cents for June 8, 2012

August 1, 2012, by John Norris

Currently, my son is playing some post-season tournament baseball. When I was growing up, we called this sort of thing All-Stars; however, that was back in the day when you only had 1 All-Star team per grade per community. These days, most of the good players in the league can hitch their wagon to a team after the regular season is over.

It is all in good fun, or should be. Now, I like to win more than the next guy, but some of these other parents make me look like Nero, fiddling while Rome is burning. Regardless, we are all wild-eyed Bolsheviks when it comes to the days of yore, when parents used Little League as a good, if not necessarily valid, excuse to drink beer on Saturday afternoons. Well, many of them.

It might not come as a shock to anyone, but I am the scorekeeper for the team. That is the role the kind of nerdy, involved fathers get. Sure, I will occasionally get in there and throw some batting practice, but my highest and best use for the team, presumably, is keeping the book. In the seeding tournament when are in right now, the home team’s scorekeeper is also the official scorekeeper for the game. Oh, the august responsibilities!

Now, at the Hewitt-Trussville youth baseball complex, the scorekeeper and the scoreboard operators sit in an air-conditioned room above the concession stand, with a picture window facing the field. You can think of it as sort of a press box, although no members of the actual press are there. So, I had a bird’s eye view of the game last night, one which my son’s team lost, and badly.

The game was actually pretty close for a couple of innings, but the other team blew it open in the top of the fourth, and I saw it all from on high and away from the field. The problem? The positioning of the right side of our defense. Our first baseman was no more than two small steps away from the bag, and the second baseman was lined up in the former’s back pocket. While that is hyperbole, let’s just say there was a rather large, if not huge, hole on the right side of our infield. To compound the problem, the right fielder was about 10 feet from the foul line, and our center fielder was positioned to the left of second base.

To read more… June 08, 2012 Common Cents