Monday, February 4, 2008

Pele? Or Papi?

I found out yesterday that Rakes is now old enough to play T-Ball this Spring; even though I've been waiting for this time since he was born, I'm sort of torn about what to do.

He started playing soccer in the fall, and to say he liked it would be an understatement. He LOVED it; going to practice, wearing the uniform, and I almost started to get jealous over how much he talked about Coach Bendell (Wendell). He could technically play both, but the twin combination of money/sanity make that option sort of difficult.

Playing baseball in the front yard is one of his favorite things to do, and we actually got to go outside and hit some balls yesterday for the first time in months. I'm a little worried about him in a team environment though. For several reasons.

One, after watching so many games with me, he wants to "hit dat ball in de air like Big Papi do, Dad", after which he flips his bat and does his best Barry Bonds impression. I'm pretty sure that sort of pimpage is frowned upon by the T-Ball league.

Second, part of the fact he loves soccer so much is he NEVER STOPS RUNNING. I'm scared all the standing around in the field and waiting for his turn at bat playing baseball will result in bodily harm to other players, his coach, and the umpires.

Third, he absolutely LOVED Coach Wendell, and he'd have him again this Spring. Plus Wendell is used to his "personality" and actually understands "Rakes speak" pretty well. Also, I'm not sure it'd be fair to put a new person through all that; despite what you hear, I do have feelings for my fellow man.

Right now, I'm leaning toward keeping him in soccer and starting baseball in the fall. He can already hit his Dad's best fastball, so he's used to hitting balls that don't move. And he's actually still shorter than the tee, so he'd probably develop some bad habits swinging UP at a stationary ball just to make contact.

Mostly though, I think he's still too much like a dog; he needs a big open space to run in, butterflies to chase, and territory to mark. His future T-Ball coach will thank me one day.

Lastly, he's pretty fond of that trophy he got playing soccer; sleeps with it on his nightstand every night.

I think I'll let him do what makes HIM happy, not what would make his Dad happy.

So, soccer it is.


Tex said...

I was getting ready to give my two cents but I see you figured it out for yourself. :)

seriously...why dont you ask Rakes? I will say that I think parents over extend their kids lives these days trying to involve them in every thing. some kids can handle that...some cant.

i know its hard cos you love baseball so. but if rakes loves soccer...

Ted D said...

Tex, he wants to play both, but as "exciteable" as he is, he really only needs to play one. With play school, church, sports, time with Mom and Dad, right now one is about all he should have to deal with.

And his choice would be soccer. While I want him to play baseball, there is plenty of time for that.

Plus, I think he'd be bored with all the standing around. It kills him now to have to take turns with his sister; I can imagine having to tell him he has to wait for EIGHT kids to hit before he could again.

Tex said...

maybe he needs to be a designated hitter like Papi. :)

i know Im just messing. there is plenty of time. my good friend's son who is an awesome baseball player AND soccer player (he's 14) he finally had to make his own mind up.

Ted D said...

Tex, I promised myself when I had a boy, I'd let him tell me what he wanted to do.

It's hard not to try and nudge them along, though. ;)

But he loves soccer, so we'll stick with it for now.

Wayne's World said...

I think...

"He can already hit his Dad's best fastball, so he's used to hitting balls that don't move."

Yup...That's one of the funniest lines of yours I've ever read man. :-)

Great post man. I can always count on at least one good belly laugh from every one of your posts, even if they are done on a serious subject (Like this one).

I'm with Tex and you in agreeing with your decision. Speaking of soccer...I can't freakin wait until the spring when our soccer pick-up games start back up around here.

Ted D said...

Thanks, Wayne. I appreciate the kind words.

As a frustrated athlete, it's hard not to push your kids where YOU want them to go. But for right now, I think soccer is the sport he needs to be in. For all involved.

'Preciate you stopping by. And condolences on the Pats, man. Tough loss to take.

JMP said...

Hey Ted,
Good call!!!
Keep him in soccer. Plenty of action where as t-ball is a lot of standing around and really hard on an active kid.
I coached 4 t-ball teams and I know that the Parents enjoy it more than the kids.

Soccer on the other hand keeps them moving.
In t-ball 99% of the balls never even make it to the pitchers mound and then the kids in the field are board stiff and when a ball is hit you have 6 or 7 kids pouncing on the ball!!!!
and never mind about the kids waiting to bat!!!

I know of a lot of Dads who's kids were on my soccer teams and they never let their kids play t-ball ...most called it a big waste of time.

But my kids wanted to do it and they were in spring soccer too... we kept busy!!!

Anonymous said...

It's hard to argue with that kinda logic Tough Guy! (Oh, you know I couldn't resist.) What a cutie sleeping with his trophy! Wonder where he got that from? Hmmm?

Anonymous said...

Tex: I couldn't agree with you more on overextending your children. I see how some get so burned out as well as their parents. Not pretty!

~**Dawn**~ said...

I am thinking perhaps you ought to justify it *this* way: Rakes maybe ought not play a sport where he is being handed a weapon. ;-) Soccer is pretty much weapon-free, and you can still play baseball in the yard. =)

//Mostly though, I think he's still too much like a dog; he needs a big open space to run in, butterflies to chase, and territory to mark.//

OM what you're raising is a little *Manny*.

Ted D said...

Hey jmp. Yeah, I'm thinking soccer may be the best place for him. And I don't want to be one of those Dad's who live vicariously through the kid; although I think he'll want to play baseball when he gets a little older. Thanks for the advice.

Edge, he didn't get it from me.

::hides little league trophy::

Dawn, you raise a solid point. He definately doesn't need weapons. ;) And I've made the Manny comparision myself before with Rakes, only half joking. ;)

Redbeard76 said...

Sounds like the right move, he's got lots of energy to burn, why not let him run around. Maybe next year he'll have a little more maturity to be able to focus on baseball/t-ball better than he would now.

Ted D said...

Stephen, exactly what I thought. Let him just run himself into the ground; it's better than him climbing up the stairs on the OUTSIDE of the railing.

The boy is going to give me a stroke.

Redbeard76 said...

Better get you one of them life alert bracelets - help I've fallen and I can't get up.

scott h said...

Oh go ahead and let him do both.
So he spaz's a little bit in the field. Now is when they get to play and who cares what they do or how they act. Trust me those days are few and far between.

Ted D said...

Stephen, you don't realize how close to the truth your statement is.

Bub, it's honestly more of a money/time thing. He'll practice soccer 2 days a week with a game every Saturday. He's in school 3 days a week, plus Wed night church.

I don't want him to be on the go all the time, plus Ang would need a jetpack to do it all if we added another sport.

Think I'll stick with soccer until Fall.

Redbeard76 said...

Come to think of it, I think you have the only picture I've ever seen of Bonds smiling. Usually he's a cranky looking b@$+@rd.

Tree Newt said...

I'm with Wayne, the line about your fastball is one of your best. And as much as I dislike soccer, it probably is the best thing for him now. Unlike myself, who rather enjoyed the time waiting for at bats since I could pass it by playing with insects and watching grass grow, Rakes might cause a bit of mischief with that scenario.

HorshamScouse said...

Soccer, but then I'm biased:)
Great news about your Mum, Ted.

Krystle THE Red Sox Oasis said...

I LOVE when when little kids play soccer. All time cutest thing ever because half the time the ball is their size.

I hate when parents try to make their kids do whatever they want. And the have baseball in the fall done in NC?

Tex said...

do not make your kids live out your own dreams.

That is MY philosophy.

oh Scott..i know you'll get a kick out of this...i met this guy a couple of weeks ago who is in the process of moving here. He's coming in next week again on business...wants to see me.

he's an Okie :)

Ted D said...

Newt, every now and then I'll slip a gem in among all the dead weeds I throw out there.

Thanks Horsham. You make it back to NZ yet? Hope the boys are well.

Krystle, it's pretty comical. I did a post back in the fall about him playing; put a lot of pictures up, but can't remember if it was in Oct or Sept.

Tex, you CAN'T date an Okie if you're a native Texan, can you? Doesn't that break some state law or something?

Stacy said...

Ted, I think you made the right decision; soccer is the way to go for now. Let him run off all that energy instead of standing around in the outfield waiting for a ball to get hit.

Jared didn't start baseball until
2nd grade and he's a fair 3rd baseman. :)

Dawn also makes a VERY good point about not giving him a weapon. :)

Krystle THE Red Sox Oasis said...

This is from my friend's pyschology book. Figured you would enjoy it.

although mild and harmless superstitious beliefs and acts are similar in cetain respects to obsessions and compulsions. In fact, superstitions obsessions and compulsions may also have similar origins according to some psychologists. A widely shared superstition was the 86-year old belief by boston red sox fans that their team was suffering the curse of the bambino and would never again win a world series title-a curse supposedly triggered by the red sox's 1920 trade of babe ruth to the new york yankees. In an effort to reverse the curse Red Sox fans performed various superstitious acts game after game, year after year, such as displaying signs written backwards. When the Red Sox finally won a world series title in 2004 many of the fans were forced to acknowledge that there had never really been a curse. Others, however, concluded that their backwards signs and the like had finally done their job

Ted D said...

Stacy, that Dawn is pretty sharp. I hadn't even considered the weapon thing.

Krystle, that's pretty interesting. While I don't believe in curses, I am a believer that wear I sit DIRECTLY affects the game, and I believe in the power of the hat. If I'm wearing one and they aren't playing well, I switch it out.

But people who believe in curses really need to seek professional help. :}