Here’s your weekly dose of player encouragement from our friend, Little League coach and commissioner, Rob Monaco. (Show this to your player before his or her next tournament.)
Sometimes kids put too much pressure on themselves. Sometimes players forget that baseball is just a game. I say “just” because at your age… it is. Yes, it’s about development and growth, but you need to enjoy yourself and trust your abilities.
Put the pressure aside for a second. See the big picture. You are good enough to be on a baseball field because you have talent and the ability to play a hard, hard game. And the fact is, you’ve done it for several years now. Some of you are even starting out. Bottom line, you understand the game, the counts, the concept. You are a ballplayer and if you can learn to just trust your abilities and let your confidence consume you… I have news for you kid, You’ve made it! Forget the pressure… just play ball.
The game is hard. The game will try to beat you every day. Know that going in and prepare for it. Think about what comes next after your opponent gets on base. Where will you throw it if it’s hit to you? How many outs are there? How many runs are you up or down? Always be engaged… think about the plays… visualize and most importantly… stand tall and trust yourself to get the job done!
You will not win the game every time. You will not hit the ball every time. But walk up knowing you CAN and as you continue to practice and work hard and build confidence and courage… it will become an easier task.
But let the pressure roll off…because in the end, it’s not about perfect. It’s about being confident.
Be confident in yourself. Do it, and win or lose… it will not matter… as long as you believe in your abilites and don’t let that pressure ride you… you will succeed and you will… WIN.