Baseball play­ers shut out of tour­na­ment

The Western Star - - EDITORIAL -

This let­ter is in re­sponse to the ar­ti­cle pub­lished in the Western Star, Au­gust 3rd, re­gard­ing the sus­pen­sions of four, 20-year-old ju­nior baseball play­ers.

The ar­ti­cle en­ti­tled “Fouled Out” re­counts only one side of the story. The ar­ti­cle por­trays th­ese play­ers as poor sports­men and leads the reader to be­lieve that all th­ese young men wanted to do was to go to the beer tent. This, how­ever, is the far­thest from the truth.

The ar­ti­cle does not speak to the real rea­son th­ese four, 20 year olds walked off the field; some­thing which none of them have ever done in their baseball ca­reers. The prob­lem: they were frus­trated with the un­fair coach­ing that was tak­ing place all week­end.

Two of th­ese coaches were mid­get di­vi­sion coaches. They had vol­un­teered to coach the ju­nior play­ers for their provin­cial tour­na­ment – won­der­ful, right?

The is­sue arose when th­ese coaches in­vited ALL of their mid­get play­ers to join the team. They pro­ceeded to play most of th­ese younger di­vi­sion play­ers while ig­nor­ing and leav­ing at least four of the 20 year old ju­nior play­ers, some of whom have rep­re­sented New­found­land and Labrador at na­tional tour­na­ments, on the bench with no play time in their own tour­na­ment.

Th­ese young men be­came frus­trated af­ter a week­end of watch­ing mid­get play­ers, who were sup­posed to help fill out the ros­ter, ac­tu­ally replace them. This re­sulted in some of the ju­nior play­ers not re­ceiv­ing one in­ning of play in a provin­cial ju­nior tour­na­ment. There was no dis­cus­sion be­tween th­ese boys and the coaches about game play or even what po­si­tions they ac­tu­ally played.

To add to the frus­tra­tion th­ese ju­nior boys have been play­ing against the other ju­nior teams their whole lives, some are friends who have ac­tu­ally played to­gether at Na­tional Tour­na­ments.

Some­times stand­ing up for your­self and what you feel is un­fair is not easy, or even done by the book. Th­ese young men, each in their own way, did just that. They have served or are serv­ing their sus­pen­sions.

In my opinion the def­i­ni­tion of poor sports­man­ship lies with the coaches.

I ask how­ever where is the ac­count­abil­ity, and more im­por­tantly, the rem­edy for this poor coach­ing.

In­ter­est­ingly, the only ex­pla­na­tion that I have heard as to why th­ese ju­nior play­ers were shut out of their own ju­nior tour­na­ment has been the word “pol­i­tics”. This is to­tally ab­surd! Why any mem­ber of the Cor­ner Brook Baseball As­so­ci­a­tion would vol­un­tar­ily of­fer this as any kind of ac­cept­able ex­pla­na­tion is be­yond me. Lisa Kelly,

Cor­ner Brook

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