Good morning Orioles! I want to say thank you to the family members who helped run practice on Saturday. That was awesome and the kids got some excellent instruction on fundamentals. Having one or two kids per coach was huge and that was a great practice.
This week, we practice on Friday, the 17th at 5:30pm. I messaged the commish but I assume we get jerseys and hats that day. Opening Day for us is the next day, Saturday, the 18th at 2:00pm. Both will be on the same Tee Ball 1 field we have been playing on.
At Friday’s practice, the kids will hit live pitching just like in the game on Saturday. They get 5 swings and if they don’t hit it, they’ll hit off the tee and run the bases just like the game. We’ll rotate the hitters through to get them as many at bats as possible in the first 45 minutes of practice. If any siblings or other family members want to shag some grounders/line drives, bring your glove. The kids not hitting, on deck, or on the bases will be in the field too but the more the merrier.
See you all on Friday at 5:30!
WCWAA Orioles - The Week Ahead
Good evening Orioles. We have our first practice under our belts and I was very happy with the work that the kids put in. They have a lot of personality and I am looking forward to getting to know them. Thank you so much to the parents who helped on Tuesday night. That would have been a mess without you. I do need help with the team this year and so far I have heard from Trey Putman, Jordan Vliet, Andy Grant, and Cameron Richardson for helping with the team. I am still learning the names so I apologize if you spoke to me on Tuesday and I didn’t mention you here. Please just remind me. If there are any other parents who would like to help, please let me know. For practice on Saturday, we are going to try to streamline it a bit more. We are going to begin practice for the first 40 minutes (or so) doing stations. It is going to be hot and I want to make sure the kids can take breaks and not overdo it. I think the setup between drills in the first practice took too long so I want to have 4 stations already set up and have the kids rotate. 10 minutes per station with 2 players and at least 1 coach would give them a really good chance to get some repetitions and instruction on the basics.
Tee work. They can start out hitting on a tee, about 10 cuts per player and alternate out and repeat, progressing to soft toss if they are comfortable with that. We will hit live on the field at the next practice on Friday, 9/17.
Fielding ground balls. We ran out of time on Tuesday before covering this but I want to work on alligator hands with no glove, only about 10 feet apart and have them work on getting both hands down for the ball. This will really help them transition the ball from their glove to the throwing hand when they get older if they learn it this way from the start.
Throwing. This would be similar to the beginning of the last practice. Depending on skill level, let’s open it up and let the kids just work on throwing the ball with good form. We can throw with wiffle balls, tennis balls, or baseballs. I will bring all 3.
Catching. This is very important as we have our first game a week from Saturday and I want to make sure that the players are able to catch the ball when hit or thrown to them. This is a process and the more practice we can give them, the better. We’ll use tennis balls for this one so they don’t get hurt and can build up their confidence.
I know that the remaining 20 mins of practice time will include water breaks throughout practice and I have a throwing competition to finish with where we will have 2 teams and the kids will throw baseballs to a target. I think they will like it. 😊 I am hanging 2 hula hoops on the fence. 2 teams of 4. Stand at a set distance and the first team to hit inside of it 10 times is the winner. One ball for each team so there aren’t a lot flying. If we have time we can do this again from a little farther back.
I don’t want for the team to go to the first game without hitting live pitching on the field, so next Friday, 9/17 at 5:30pm at practice, we will really focus on hitting live pitching on the field for all the players. We will keep rotating the players for about 45 minutes so a player gets 5 swings on the field and then can hit off the tee if needed, then rotate. I hope that keeping them moving next Friday will keep them interested.
Our first game is next Saturday, 9/18 at 2:00pm. We have many more practices and games this season and I am really looking forward to seeing the kids progress. Please email me or text me with any questions, issues or suggestions. 704-726-0536.
We do need a team parent to coordinate the snack schedule for the team so if anyone is interested in volunteering for that, please let me know.
All of the kids need rubber cleats, gray baseball pants, and a batting helmet. I assume we will get uniforms by practice on Friday night for me to hand out, but I have not heard anything about that yet.