Wednesday, April 1, 2009

'Scuse Me, Blue?

I am glad that while both my boys enjoy the same sports, and are both talented athletes, they excel in different areas. It helps to keep the comparisons, both the ones they will do themselves and the inevitable ones that the adults in their lives will do, to a minimum.

Jock started his baseball career playing catcher and first base. So naturally, since he idolizes all things Jock, Bug wanted to play the same positions when he started that his brother played. And both boys played well at those positions. However, as they have grown and developed as players, they've both found their strengths to be in other areas. Jock is a fantastic left fielder. His arm is amazing, and the strength and accuracy he has is awesome.

Bug? Is turning into a phenomenal pitcher. Even his brother agrees, although he will rarely admit that to anyone. My little Bug throws fast, he throws hard, and he throws straight. (Well, most of the time. He IS only 10, so the stress of the game still gets him sometimes and he ends up throwing balls or hitting the batter. But he hasn't hurt anyone to the point of leaving the game, so it's all good.) He is totally committed to becoming a better pitcher.

Last season, Coach had built a pitching mound in our backyard for the boys. We ended up with either the wrong dirt, or just a bad pile of it, so the mound didn't get used much. By the end of the summer, it had pretty much been leveled out and was just another space in the yard. The pitching rubber was forgotten, and left laying out by the ladders and lawnmower. Last weekend, after hearing Bug talking to himself in the backyard and hearing some strange noises, I looked out the bathroom window (Had to stand on the edge of the tub to do that, too; but it was totally worth it!). There he was, on his knees in the dirt and rocks, attempting to rebuild that mound. He had piled up just enough to anchor that pitching rubber to. Then he stood up, and pretended to pitch.

So what did Coach do? He went out back and cleared an area at the other end of the yard to use as home plate. Now either he or Jock sit out there several times a week and catch for Bug. Occasionally, they'll have to duck quickly and let the ball slam into the block wall; and he's sent a couple over and into the neighbor's pool. But he's getting better.

Tonight, he threw 90 pitches in the game. Struck out at least as many as were walked. And allowed a very small number of actual hits. (We did lose the game, but it was our fielding errors that killed us. Ugh!) And still he managed to hit a double and score the only run our team had.

90 pitches. Now, if I could get him to pick up 90 pieces of trash at home, or brush one of the dogs 90 times (or both at 45 times each...I'm not that picky!) we'd be golden!


Karen said...

You need to convince him that all those extra chores will strengthen his arm. Remember Karate Kid?

Cece said...

Oh yeah, good idea from Karen. lol You need to rent him that movie & show him how doing chores will make him better, then tell me how that works out so I can try it at home. lol

Crazymamaof6 said...

awesome! that is great he is that into and practices so much! WHOOOHOO!

Cecily R said...

I admire all of you in this post...certainly Bug for working so hard and for practicing so much. Jock for helping him (and admitting that he's getting good), Coach for helping AND buiding a mound, and YOU for recognizing how totally completely AWESOME it all is...I love that!! :)

Shellie said...

Cool bug! How great he will work hard at pitching. And yeah, too bad it doesn't transfer over to other areas of life. Maybe when he's all grown up and on his own?

Flea said...

Good to hear about Bug's athletic side. What great boys you have!